Tag Archives: vacation

We’re Back! (PS: there is no “we.”)

3 Sep

blog image jim gaffigan

Following our busiest summer EVER (what with the book tour to Paris and all- more about that later), FA&S is pleased to announce that we’re BACK!  With even more of the sarcasm you’ve come to expect (and love).  Mostly love.

Here’s a quick run-down of what to look forward to this fall.  (Note: due to time constraints such as feeding The Boy, conversing with Spouse, disagreeing with Spouse and ultimately no longer talking to Spouse, FA&S is simply TOO BUSY FOR FULL WORDS AND SENTENCES just now.)  And yet, somehow, we have plenty of time to type in ALL CAPS.  Go figure.  Until then…F.U.

“You leave me little notes on my pillow. I told you a hundred-and-sixty-eight times I can’t .. stand .. little notes on my pillow! ‘We are all out of Corn Flakes.” -F.U.  It took me three hours to figure out that ‘F.U.’ was Felix Unger!” ~ Neil Simon’s “The Odd Couple.”

See, we don’t always abbreviate, only sumtmz.  (PS: there is no “we.”)

FYI, here’s how our summer went (also, there is no “our”):

ALB to CDG.

UTI– best place to get a UTI?  Paris, France.  30 minutes and $3 later, antibiotic drugs delivered to my apartment;  I felt like Jim Morrison without the bloat.  Ego, yes.  Bloat?  Non.

POS– as rust eats away at the tailgate of my little red car, we head south on the

GSP to

NYC

and

LBI while listening to

NPR and, of course, the sounds of The Boy whining and Spouse yelling while stepping on an imaginary brake pedal that doesn’t exist.  Why anyone would need to brake while driving on a highway is beyond me.  With so many lanes to choose from, just glide over to one that you like better.

IRS– just when I thought summer vacation was paid for, a FY2012 adjustment shows up.  (Ended up at DQ for Blizzard Therapy.)

KGB– killer ground bees.  I didn’t die but my arm swelled up like Kathleen Turner’s head on steroids.  Not a good look for her, a horrible feeling for ME.

M.E.– because that’s who was attacked by the bees and that’s who is entitled to high drama (and eggplant parm) until the swelling goes down.

W-E-D- as in “til death do us part.”  As in, the average life span of a pioneer was 40 years.  “Death” was lurking around every corner in the 1700’s.  From bad squirrel meat to well, good squirrel meat, “death” was a just part of your first marriage.  Well anyone can honor a commitment like that.  (Side note: “W-E-D” begins with a “W” and contains three letters.  As does “WHY?”  Just an observation.  You’re welcome.)

WTF– which, until recently, I thought meant “with the fries.”  I now understand why friends would often text “?” to my answers.  Like when Harry texted: “ordered burger medium-rare and it’s burnt, wtf?”  And I replied: “enjoy the f- especially steaming hot with a little vinegar and cracked pepper.”  Or when Lucy wrote:  “wtf!  At Costco and they sold out of toilet paper!”  To which I replied: “I hope they’re warm.”

Oh, and about that book tour of Paris.  Well, in June, I did visit the City of Lights where I was, again, treated to the sounds of The Boy whining and Spouse yelling (plus bread, wine and cheese.  And wine.)  Also, I read a book on the flight over.  Hence the book/tour.

The book was Jim Gaffigan’s “Dad is Fat” but I think it still counts.  Also, I figure that the only way I will ever have a book/tour of my own is by linking words like “book” and “tour” and “me” into sentences and then releasing that energy into the universe.

And I’m pretty sure that I have the “ME” part down.

Plus, I’m certain that Mr. Gaffigan appreciates the plug.

Until L8R.

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My Long Beach Island Vacation

30 Aug

Staying with family is a great way to save money on a hotel room and a quick route to Regressionland- make a left at the corner of “I’m not getting back in the car to drive over and see your new kitchen; you haven’t been to my house in twelve years” then a right at “it’s probably not a good idea to put sugar on the baby’s broccoli” and there you are: the teenage middle kid trying to keep quiet and go unnoticed.  P.S: nothing I say matters anyway, so why even bother?

And while on the subject of adolescence, nothing is more scary than watching The Boy’s moods shift with the tides.  It’s “Goodfellas” and “Sponge Bob Square Pants” rolled into one gritty peanut butter sandwich (“this has sand in it”) washed down with paper cupfuls of lukewarm Vitaminwater.

So when remaining silent was no longer an option and I asked The Boy why he hated having to hang out with me and he responded that he, in fact, “does not hate me right now,” I felt that the six hours of driving and the never-ending schlepping of beach toys and coolers was well worth it.  The constant flow of money (in one direction) is simply the price you pay for truth.

Speaking of truth, here’s a tip: when your wife asks you to tug on that part of her swimsuit that she can’t quite reach, don’t yell “Hoist!”.  It makes her feel self-conscious which results in her sitting on the beach desperately flipping through damp, hand-me-down Oprah magazines in an attempt to overcome self-consciousness (and become a better friend) while completely forgoing all thoughts of swimming which, to me, is the primary reason for vacationing at the ocean.

Otherwise why not just put a sandbox in the backyard, download a “crashing wave” app and sleep on our own scratchy, low thread-count sheets?

Question: why is it always too late to realize that the people who I went away with are the people I need to get away from?

And why didn’t anyone tell me that Priceline has rooms at LBI starting at $119?  My relationship with my family could have remained dysfunctional, but well-intentioned, and I wouldn’t be sitting here now wondering if we are still invited for Thanksgiving.

Assuming that The Boy doesn’t hate Pilgrims by then either.

Signed: “Fresh Air and Sarcasm’s” Mother

5 Jul

(Names have not been changed.  You wanted to be a vice principal, you’re going to BE vice principal.)

Dear Vice Principal Klenk:

This week’s “Fresh Air and Sarcasm” is absent due to clement weather, pleasant breezes and a laissez-faire attitude that Jean-Baptiste Colbert would be proud to call his own.

See you next Wednesday.

(Make hand gesture of choice here.)

Refrigerator Post

31 May

You know how sometimes you invite people over to dinner so that the house will get thoroughly cleaned?  (Not necessarily by me, you understand.)

I have also noticed that the only time that my refrigerator gets totally cleaned is just before vacation.  I find it easier to deal with the refrigerator when I’m already sweaty from cleaning litter boxes than to come home to dangerous mayo, moldy sauerkraut, or Coors Light.  The Coors Light was probably left by a well-meaning dinner guest (circa the last time the house was clean).

Also, I sometimes refer to spouse as “Moldy Sauerkraut” but only when I’m really mad.  Like while cleaning out the refrigerator.

I try not to think of cleaning the refrigerator as throwing money away.  I like to focus, instead, on the time wasted procuring the food. Time that I could have spent researching recipes, buying Le Creuset cookware from Williams-Sonoma and then becoming overwhelmed at the thought of it all and, instead, taking a nap.

So as vacation nears, I often employ my “make-do method” of nutrition.  Basically I halt all grocery shopping until our immediate food needs are assessed.  Items at, near or past expiration must be consumed first: I’m not about to throw away two-week old yogurt based on some random date that the grocer applied.  Don’t even get me started on “Best Before” dates.  I am at my best between 10 and 11AM but you don’t see people lining up to hang out with me then.  Sometimes life hands you lemons, juice or freeze them before they look like limes and all will be fine.

The closer the departure, the weirder the meals.  You know we’re leaving tomorrow when dinner is mango smoothie shots followed by assorted noodles of varying thickness in pesto/grape sauce.  If anyone is still hungry, there’s relish.

Consider yourselves warned.  A dinner invitation means this: the house will be clean and there will be food .  Not everyone may be eating the same things but the hot stuff will be hot and the cold stuff will be tepid.

I’ll be gone pass the beans.

Over the River and through the Wood

22 Feb

To grandmother’s house we go.  Why?  Because my husband and I think it’s important for our son to maintain a relationship with his grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, etc.  And it is.  It’s so vital, in fact, my husband says he will think all about it while the boy and I actually drive it- 500 miles in two days.  He’s a real trouper, that spouse.

In some ways it’s good that the spouse stayed home.  Like when I stress ate, for example.  With my family around, not only is stress eating a given, it is fully supported and encouraged via a cornucopia of day-old baked goods sitting on the counter waiting to sustain a person until dinner at 3:45PM.

So when I stress ate the cheese Danish, the apple pie and the sprinkles- no ice cream- just sprinkles, the last thing I needed was my husband “supporting” me with words like: “you don’t even eat candy on Halloween and now you’re in the corner scarfing down Skittles like they’re a bowl of flax seeds,” or “I’m certain that your folks have pictures of our kid somewhere in the house- did you check the closet?  That’s a pretty big closet, maybe they decided to decorate it.  With pictures.  Of our son.  Now let’s put those cream puffs away, shall we?”

His support can be so cloying, I just want a milkshake.

Also without the spouse, traveling was pleasant for most of the trip.  Almost the entire ride went well until late yesterday when, with 15 miles to go, the boy turned on me.  Tired, hungry, stiff and bored, he declared that: he was tired of being in the car, our entire iTunes playlist needed to be chucked, school was a waste of time, I was a mouth breather and he missed Dad.

Well, I missed the spouse too.  Not because I needed someone to turn down the music, defend my large adenoids, note which artists were inappropriate (Beastie Boys, Eminem) or tell me that I drive too fast, too slow, too crazily or too vengefully.  Nor because I missed having someone slam on a brake pedal that doesn’t exist, or claw at the air like the brother who lives in Verdi’s “Il Trovatore.”

I missed the spouse because, in an attempt to make me feel better about my family, I know that he would say that the three pounds I gained (in two days) ended up in all the right places.  And I needed to hear it.  He’s a real trouper, that spouse.

Summer Vocabulary List

30 Aug

The best souvenirs are free and timeless.

I came home from last week’s trip to the Jersey shore with the following:

“creamify”: to pour heavy cream over fresh peach slices and then freeze.  Useful for those who are no longer able to have sugary ice cream due to recently diagnosed type 2 diabetes, Dad.

“appeasiate”: between appease and abate.  A useful reply to husband yelling “what the hell are you doing?!”  Used when one is driving in Rt. 17 traffic with a crazed BMW on her rear and a kid in the backseat insisting that the only acceptable lunch is Panera Bread which isn’t even good and will later make his stomach queasy, so driver cuts off the BMW with a sharp right turn in an attempt to make everyone happy, thereby “appeasiating” the entire family.  For a folksy, down- home twist, substitute “appeasiatin’.”

“hain’t?”: classic Mom.  Used at the end of sentences when one is attempting to garner support or jog Dad’s memory.  Often combined with “hain’t no?” when an extra syllable is required.

“pownie”: a one pound brownie.  See also: self-medicate, the way the food pyramid ought to look, bliss and guilt.

P.S. We had an earthquake on Tuesday and a mandatory evacuation due to hurricane Irene on Friday- also free and the stories are timeless.

Asperger Moment

14 Jul

To the Aspie Kid road tripping the US for the summer, I asked: “where are you now?”

“In the backseat,” he replied.

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