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Don't Buy The Baseball, It'll Only Break Your Heart

2003-10-23 - 1:04 p.m.

Secret Word: George Washington

Listening To: BFF, Beck, Dylan, Pixies, David Byrne, Pearl Jam

Quote: "Well, well, well - if it isn't Abercombie and Bitch." - Peter


Brief delay. I guess you could call it that.

Where were we? I know Peter came to visit at the end of last month. That's for sure. And then we went to Bridgton. To meet Jackie. Wait, I'm jumbling it all up now. Let's take this one load of bread at a time.

----------Frog Day Afternoons----------

Peter and Titie descended onto New Hampshire that last weekend in September. All the talk was about the A's, my burgeoning crush on Johnny Damon, the Netherlands, people's lack RSVP etiquette (specifically Hannah S., Keith, and Rick), new techniques for cheating at Beirut, and trying our best to insert ourselves into domestic violence situations in beautiful downtown Rollinsford.

To say we were all happy to finally see Peter and to meet Titie would be a vast understatement. We threw a BBBQ, hosted none other by the Chefest of the Chens, Kenichi, and it was attended by such luminaries as Shannon & Matt, Chad & Mackenzie, Phil & Andrea, Brooke, Rich, Jeff, Ben, Al-Y, and of course, we can't forget my mother. It was fun and we watched the Red Sox win win win. Of course, this was back in the day when one could watch the Red Sox.

We ate out, a LOT. I think I spent more money on food the 4 days Peter and Titie were here than what I'd spent on food all summer. We frequented The Friendly Toast, Poco's, Warren's, Smiley's, etc. Titie was a great girl and I won't even hold it against her that she's Dutch. If anything, it was a plus. She taught me more about the Netherlands than I already knew. Which isn't too difficult since my most burning question to her was, "Why don't we call it Holland anymore?" [Make fun all you want, but I bet you don't know the answer!] Peter and Titie collaborated on a Mix CD for me called, "Frog Day Afternoon" and I must say it was a smashing success. It was listened to during the copious amounts of Beirut and Estimation we played. Yes, yes, ESTIMATION! How many times in the last year or so have I mentioned something along the lines of, " . . . and then we played Estimation and oh how it sent a sharp pang of sadness into our clockwork hearts that Peter couldn't be there to join us . . ." - or, you know, something along those lines. Anyway, he was there. And we {Ben, Peter, Titie, Zach - occasionally aided by Brooke} drank WAY more than we should have. And I gave Peter and Titie my bed while they were there, so i was couchin' it for quite a while. But it was worth it. Even if we didn't make time for Donnie Darko. But fear not, I convinced them to buy it. The wedding seems to be set for either April or May. In Florida. I am excited about it. It should be a fun trip and a great wedding/reception.

Oh yes, and I suppose I should add that while playing Asshole at the BBBQ, Peter found it necessary to refer to Ben and I as, "Abercrombie . . . . . . and Bitch!" I asked him which one each of us was and he said it all depended on our moods. Fair enough.

Here's a picture that I got from Peter and Titie's stay with us in the ol' Granite State. I find it indicitive of both our time with us, and their overall personalities . . .

. . .and by "indicitive of", I mean to say that Peter always had a crazed look in his non-symetrical eyes while yelling out for someone to "Beer" him, whilst Titie, very much the Cyclops would mostly just guzzle down letter Q's and mumble something about "Avagadro's Number". Those crazy kids.

----------Kayaking Amongst The SwampMonkeys----------

Fast forward a week or so and Ben and I are packing up the old Grand Cherokee for a visit up to Bridgton, for a long weekend with the Curtis/Webster clan. To be specific, Tim, Tim's Mom & Dad, Nancy, Nancy's parents, Ryan, and Jackie, Tim's girlfriend from San Fran that my MOTHER already met when she went out there a few months ago. My mother was goo-goo ga-ga over Jackie. Which made me slightly apprehnesive, because I didn't want to agree with my mother on anything, but, I must be truthful - Ben and I liked Jackie a lot. The only thing that was weird to us is that our good friends introducing us to their 29 year-old blonde girlfriends each weekend was starting to seem like a pattern.

Ben had been to Bridgton within the last year, but I hadn't been since high school. It was quite a flashback. With the exception of an addition of an upstairs bathroom, some minor remodeling, and the switching of most of the Mad Magazines for The Onion, it was virtually the same place as the last time I was there. Less Swamp Monkeys though. They seemed to keep a pretty low profile this time of year. But in the middle of the summer, hell, you can't run a three-legged race without tripping on some leisurely Swamp Monkeys sunning themselves near the lake. It was a fun and laid back weekend and I LOVED IT. Not having to get up to go to work was like heaven. Things that weren't like heaven were me not getting 5 winks of sleep, let alone 40, due to someone accidentally leaving an operational buzzsaw in the room while we slept. Jackie was smart and travels with earplugs. Smart, smart Jackie. Seriously, at one point, I was almost in tears and I was ready to run over to her bed and rip them out of her ears and put them in mine. But I didn't. Instead, I just counted my tears as I fell into a pseduo-sleep. And dreamt about Johnny Damon and the Red Sox making my dreams come true - Laverne & Shirley style.

We spent our nights moose hunting by moonlight and hot dog cookin' around the campfire. And we spent our mornings eating heartily, reading, and kayaking. Ben and I definitely got our thirst for kayaking out of our system for the rest of the year. Which, you know, is good - since I don't know where the hell else we're gonna do it this late in the year. Well . . . maybe at Virtual Kayak at FunSpot, but who knows if we'll be able to fit that into our busy schedule. Tim's mom was running around half the time hell-bent on catching herself a pet loon. I think she came up empty handed. Anyway, Ben and I were also introduced to Pumkinhead beer, and as cute as that sounds it tasted even cuter . . . I mean better.

Bridgton in the early AM. Well, not that early in the AM, since the place is so covered in fog and mist around 8 that it looks like Swamp Thing's HQ. Towards the right side of this photo is not only where Ben and I ran afoul a Heron, but it's where we had all gone Moose Hunting Saturday night.

The excitement in the air over the Olde Towne Team was palpable even surrounded on all sides by bristling Maine conifers. We {Ben, Tim, Jackie, Zach} decided to try to find a good sports bar in Northern Maine that would be showing the Sox/Yankees game on a big screen. But we knew it would be tough since much of Maine still doesn't have indoor plumbing or combustible engines. Screw Bat Country, this was Robie Country. [How come I never get to go to Flavor Country? - Me. You don't smoke. - Ed. Oh. Right. - Me.] We made it to the bar and proceeded to get tanked on Pumpkinhead and Miller Light with no worries as we knew Jackie was driving. Things devolved into the ugliest of eye-popping ugliness very soon. Despite Ben being the only registered Yankee fan in the joint, everyone was shocked at what happened in that game. A game that wouldn't have been so bad in it's freakishness had the Red Sox actually won. Everyone knows what happened. There's no need for me to go into it now. You all remember.

A little bit of this:

Mixed with a healthy dose of:

Looking back . . . maybe that was the beginning of the end. Hard to tell. All in all though, Sox game aside, we had a great weekend eating, reading, drinking, hunting for apple cider, kayaking, roasting moss, attempting to sleep, avoiding the ghost of Effie, and having Jackie tell me scary Amusement Park stories that will scar me for life. Thank you Jackie. God knows I need more non-Phantom of the Muppet Show related scars. I don't have any pictures of Jackie and Tim developed yet, but after getting an eyeful of the one of Peter and Titie, they're probably not too sad about that fact.


Time marches on. The girls here at work {Hannah, Al-Y, Hayley} are still addicted to the dru . . . ah, I mean comics that I supply them. Jumpgate even started supplying me with one free comic each week, a week before it's released to the general public, so I can review it on their website. Isn't that just grand? Hell, I'll eat dog food for free advance comics. Well, maybe not dog food, but at least Mo Rocca approved Snausages. ["Damn it, we almost had the boy eating dog food!"] Not that any of you pluckwicks would be interested in it outside of Andrea and the Vertigo Posse (the aforementioned girls), but here's the website where I review the comics. So far, NYX has gotten the greatest review.

A slice of life in Laconia. Expect not. At all.

There were close calls of all sorts of varieties. There were feverish IM's to Eliza over who was the better man, Damon or Millar - which is funny for too many reasons. One day poor Eliza will see the light. There was the annoyingness of not sharing this taste of the cusp of victory with Kate and Rick as I had floated them both into limbo at the time. There was this feeling that everyone was just electically charged. Everyone knew what everyone else was thinking: "What time's the game?", "What's the score?", "What inning?", "Who's pitching tomorrow?" I'd go into all of the insanity over that final baseball game but I just don't have the energy or the heart. I wore that Johnny Damon shirt every day for almost 2 weeks. I still haven't cut my hair. The last hair cut was 8/01 for KP's wedding. And now I am the shaggiest of shaggy D.A.'s (District Attorney's, not Dumbledore's Army). I'd tell you if I cried that night. But I don't remember. It's a horrible blur all in slow motion. Sort of like a second to last dance with Ellen Castro to Air Supply. You know all the details and how bone-crushingly horrible it all was, but when your forced to recite how it all got to that point, the words fail you . . . A few days ago, this little 3 1/2 year-old boy came up to the counter with two Bungee Balls. They're these stupid foamy balls we sell that are connected to bungee cords and then an wrist or ankle band (whichever you prefer). He couldn't decide which one he wanted. His mother asked me which one I thought would be good. It was a basketball or a baseball. I told him, "Don't buy the baseball kid, it'll only break your heart."

----------The Arrival of General Zod----------

At least General Zod's early arrival, a.k.a. - Cameron Pierce McIsaac, made things quite a bit lighter in the gloomy corner of the country known as New England. It's not hard to see Renee as a mom, but my circuits are still being blown at the idea of Justin as Daddy Dearest. Mommy definitely knows best in this situation. How long until daddy smuggles Zod to a match? Not too long at all is my guess. Andrea and I visited the happy family last Friday at Frisbee Hospital. Despite my protests that I would either drop the baby or accidentally feed him to a dingo, Justin still made me hold him. I did fine. Even though Justin claims I look like the baby's lesbian grandmother in the picture he took. Great. All my dreams are finally realized. I'm someone's lesbian grandmother. Don't let them tell you dreams don't come true kid. Unless their Maura Tierney-sized dreams. That's the exception.

----------Curling the Ribbon----------

So yeah. Anne claims to have met Rockapella in downtown Portsmouth and I've already colored myself 4 different shades of jealous. Brad and Caleb's birthdays passed with me visiting LA to grant them birthday wishes, as well as jump start Brad's car. He and I are getting along again - at least tentatively. Hell, I even broke bread with Rick when I was home. Crazy huh? Brooke, Shannon, Matt, Jeff, Amy and I enjoyed a hilarious story of Jeff's involving him having to be rescued, drunk and injured, from his own roof last weekend. Meanwhile, Andrea even joined Brooke, Ben and I for some rare Beirut. And will I EVER Cosmic Bowl again? Time will tell. Time will tell. And will I EVER get over Reno 911's season being over? Well, probably not. But it being reordered for a second season and watching I Love The 80's Strikes Back certainly soothes the wound. Christmas may not be here for all of you, but it's slowly creeping up on the FRM like so much red and green Kudzu. And aren't we all pleased? Actually, I'll tell you what would please me: Ben and I successfully pulling off our secret plan in a few weeks, or me moving to Hawaii and being Liz and Laura's personal Flying Cockroach Exterminator. Assuming they don't hire one first. Oh what do I know - don't ASP me, I'm only a snake!! HA HA HA HA! [It's ok Frederick, who cares what the rest of the world thinks, WE know what's funny!]

It's been real,


Better times, better times . . .

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