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4 kittens

Goober Sliders

Posted on 2017.03.19 at 23:08
I'm tired. It certainly works better when I have a rough draft developing over the whole weekend, instead of saving the whole thing for Sunday night. But here we are.



Maybe 5% of the houses in my parents' neighborhood have flat roofs. These are the flat roofed, hidden houses of central Gainesville.  I'm very fond of this style.



Two stories, flat-roofed.

I love seeing my parents. I love visiting them. I don't love having the kids at my parents' house for a week. It really drives home how boring my childhood was - how many endless days there were. No kids in the neighborhood, just an expectation that I should entertain myself. Long hours stretching out. Waiting, killing time, until dinner. (I read a lot of books, but didn't we all. I was bored a lot.)

Pokey and I went shark tooth hunting with my dad. Here was my haul:



Not bad for an old lady. That big one is a Hemipristis tooth. It's about the size of a quarter.



....

I showed my mom my tattoo plans. At first she did not like any of them, but couldn't articulate what she didn't like. We tried lots of combinations.

I used to read a lot of Archie comic books. In one completely unremarkable episode, Archie is discovered by a talent agent who wants to turn Archie into the next pop sensation. "Whatsya name, kid?" asks the agent.
"Archie Andrews," says Archie.
"That's terrible!" exclaims the agent. "We have to find a better name for you!" The agent and his cronies start riffing on Archie's name - Archie the Amazing? Astounding Andrews? etc.
Finally the agent shouts, "I've got it!" - and everyone snaps to attention - "We'll call him...Archie Andrews!"  Archie shrugs and goes with it, and the episode continuies on.

Somehow that dumb scene became a giant metaphor for life that I see all over the place.  At the very least, that was my mom with the tattoo plans. After trying out a half dozen combinations, she suggested the original combination and I agreed that it just might work.

(There is a bit of photo-shopping to do, but I think it is feasible. The first appointment is June 2nd.)

.

(It looks like this roof isn't flat, but you're actually seeing a partial half-story in the back of the house. This roof is F-L-A-T.)

It is possible that Pokey and Hawaii do not fight quite as much as they did one year ago. They still fight a lot.

Last year:
1. We did not take Pokey to the ballet dress rehearsal, solely in order to separate him and Hawaii. I wanted to take him to see Carmina Burana, but it was more important to just get those two apart from each other. This year, my mom was photographing dress rehearsal of another ballet. It was no big deal to take all three big kids to the dress rehearsal of the ballet Firebird. We never thought to leave Pokey at home.

2. On the drive home last year, we got so mad at Pokey and Hawaii that we separated them in the car, for the last day.  We  switched Ace to the third row. This year we got angry, but we never got quite that angry.

Another possible explanation is that Jammies and I are becoming deadened to the interminable fighting.



(This is one of my favorites.)

We saw a birthday party where everyone had matching Batman shirts. Ace said that she'd like everyone to wear costumes to her birthday party.
"What shall we wear?" I asked her, "What kind of costumes?"
"I'll wear my ballet outfit," she said, "and Pokey and Hawaii will wear their dance recital costumes."
"What about me and Daddy and Rascal?" I asked.
"You guys don't have dance recital costumes. You'll have to wear some kind of suit."
I pictured us wearing business suits.
Ace continued: "Like the Firebird."



The Firebird had a couple red feathers here and there in his costume, in addition. This is going to be the best birthday party.



(I see you hiding in there. With your flat roof.)

Pokey tagged along to a salvage yard style junk store. He came to a wall of old trophies and could not believe it. "WHO WOULD GIVE AWAY A TROPHY?!" he kept exclaiming. "ARE YOU KIDDING ME."



Pokey clasped his hands to his headm and could not get over his shock.

Also Pokey made up this joke:
Q: How do you cock a soda gun?
A: You drop it on the floor!!!

(Because sodas are carbonated, so it will get shaken and explode, see? No?)



On the drive home, we stopped at the secret relative's house again, in Mobile, Alabama. (Mobile is a funny place to read signs as you drive through, now that "mobile" has become such a common e-word. Mobile Dentistry? Oh, Mobile Dentristry. Right.)

(The very abbreviated version: my grandfather - who died in 1981 - told my grandmother and his kids that he was a rural hick who was estranged from his antisemitic family. That he wanted to protect us from their antisemitism. In 2014 we discovered that he was a New York Jewish kid, not a rural goy, and was not estranged from his family whatsoever. He'd made secret trips to visit them from 1940 until his death, a few times each year.)

My grandfather had one sister, Rose, who had one son. The son is about 70 years old, and lives with his wife in Mobile, Alabama.  So when we drive home from Florida, we stop and visit with Elliot and Rachel. This is our third visit. They're super nice and warm and welcoming.



(This is NOT a flat roof, but I like the tri-color paint choice.)

This time, Rachel and I got to talking. Her perspective, as an outsider, was that my grandfather was kind of a jerk. Rose had to do quite a lot of work to take care of her parents as they aged, and she could have really used my grandfather's help. But instead my grandfather showed up a few times a year, got doted on and fawned over like the prodigal son, and left Rose holding the bag entirely on the eldercare.

My grandfather's parents, Rose, Elliot and Rachel were all given the impression that they were too shameful to be shared with his nuclear family. They knew about us, they saw photos, but they were not told any identifying information, like my mother's married last name, for example.  For some reason he had to protect us from them.

Rachel feels that my grandfather abdicated his responsibility towards his parents, dumping all the work on Rose, in order to keep his new, shiny family from meeting his shameful, Jewish family.  There's probably some truth to this.



(This is my favorite house, on my favorite street. Under the walkway on the right, a ravine drops down.)

On our side, we had no idea that they existed. We were the favored side, but we didn't know.  We put my grandfather on a pedestal. I think he loved being on this pedestal of being wise and gentle. The wisest, the gentlest. Maybe, maybe not.

We think that he changed his identity to drop the Jewishness, then met my grandmother under false pretenses (during his first marriage, to boot) and got caught up in the lie. That he trapped himself in the lie and never had the courage to come clean. That it didn't have anything to do with finding his parents and sister shameful. But who knows.



Rascal got a bag of cheese puffs. Each time he pulled one out, he exclaimed, "A RAINBOW!" Every one. Then he sang, "Rainbow, go away. Come again another day." He's very cute.

We ate a lot of Goober sandwiches. To use up some hamburger buns, I made Jammies some Goober Sliders. It's a funny phrase to me: Goober Sliders indeed.



Ace, getting an Elsa-from-Frozen bandaid: "Please make me happy, band-aid! Please make me happy!"
I looked at her with raised eyebrows.
She said sheepishly, "I mean, please make me healthy, band-aid!"

Ace, making some questionable feng-shui choices with my old dollhouse:




Beds across doorways? Impractical.

New art in my parents' house:



I kind of admire it.  It's both abstract and straightforward: flying hairy penises.

When I was growing up, school let out early on Wednesdays. "Short Wednesdays", they were appropriately called.



I guess they are still a thing, at least at the elementary school level. As an adult, short Wednesdays seems mind-bogglingly dumb. In middle school, we went to all seven classes, but they only met for 20 minutes each, on Wednesdays. I think the justification was to save money?

Any more flat roofs, Heebie?



This one.

We also took the kids to Busch Gardens, down in Tampa. I'm awaiting a couple photos from my mom, though, before recounting it.  We had a good time.



This is not a true flat roof, but I admired the general griminess of the roof, which is at least partially flat. There is a full-blown mossy cover to this house.




Not a flat-roofed house, but I'm always game for consecutive arches. I know that consecutive arches are called an arcade, but without context that sounds too much like a room of video games.

Comments:


Kelly Jennings
Kelly Jennings at 2017-03-20 04:51 (UTC) (Link)

Goober Sliders?


What is a goober slider? Is that like a peanut butter sandwich on those littler slider buns?

I am trying to imagine my parents having penis art on their wall, abstract or otherwise. Nope.
heebie-geebie
heebie_geebie at 2017-03-20 12:31 (UTC) (Link)

Re: Goober Sliders?

Goobers. Swirled PB & J, in a single jar, because we're classy. It bugged the crap out of me that our kids were too delicate of pansies to eat PB&J, so I broke down and started buying this crap, which they love.

So basically, yes! a PB&J sandwich on those little slider buns.

Edited at 2017-03-20 12:31 pm (UTC)
pfgechoes at 2017-03-20 20:47 (UTC) (Link)
I think a fairy godmother needs to send a pair of these to Ace for her party!
https://www.amazon.com/Girls-Canvas-split-sole-Ballet-Slippers/dp/B005NKBE2A

Ditto on parents and penis art...I love it! Is that tile? Bathroom or kitchen?
heebie-geebie
heebie_geebie at 2017-03-21 02:04 (UTC) (Link)
Maybe Ace needs an entire firebird outfit, starting with those ballet slippers, methinks.

Bathroom tile, but they have it all over the kitchen as well. I love the 4" tile so much that I made a play to do our kitchen counters in it, but Jammies said the seams would drive him nuts. But at some point we'll redo the bathroom, and I think the 4" tile lowers, with wallpaper uppers, will find a home there.
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