Short But Sweet

First Impressions

I was volunteering at a local college while I was job-hunting in my chosen profession. I was really excited on Monday morning because the following day I had an interview lined up at a terrific university. I'd spent a relaxing weekend at the beach, and was fired up for my meeting. The Director of the office was chatting with me about my upcoming interview, excited for me at the same time she would lose her free help. After talking a few minutes, she asked me about my mini-vacation at the beach. I told her a few details and then with a big grin held up my ankle for her to see. "And look at the cool tattoo I got, too!" I exclaimed. The Director's face assumed a look of surprise, then amazement, then shock as she took in the black "bracelet" tattoo prominently displayed on my ankle. I knew what she was thinking - how could she go and do that right before an important interview?!?! I just started laughing. It was a fake tattoo but well worth the $5 I paid to see that priceless look of disbelief.


When I got my job offer for my current position I was so excited. I called my mom to tell her about it. The phone was busy. It never gives me a busy signal because they have call waiting. I knew my mom was on the Internet again, chatting on the web page I introduced her to. I hopped my my car, drove to the local college's library, logged on to a computer and found my mom in her favorite chat room. "Here you are," I wrote next to my alias. "And to think I had to go to a chat room to tell you about my job offer!"

"I'm sorry," wrote my mother, "But do I know you?"


My mom used to take me to the mall when I was a kid and a teenager. I think she did it half the time just so she could have an excuse to get an ice cream cone before we left. We'd get in the car with our cones to eat on the way home. She would stomp on the brakes on purpose so that I'd bop myself in the face with my ice cream. Years later, when I had my license, I took her out for ice cream. Heh, heh, heh! Gotcha, Mom!

Wednesday at 10

My undergraduate college sponsors these "Wednesday at 10" series that feature lecturers, musicians, films, and other cultural events. When I was in college, me and Iho (see Why Do Indian Guys Like Me) used to sponsor our own 'Wednesday at 10' series. Every Wednesday night, one or the other would walk across campus carrying a backpack containing Hiram Walker's Red Hot Schnapps. Then we'd sit and drink and talk to about midnight making "red-hot Cokes" and laughing our asses off. Sometimes we talked about our problems of the moment. We made big plans. Sometimes one would crash over, but more often than not, one of us would stagger back across campus. Back to our own dorm. Those cool nights in spring, walking alone in the dark, having had an awesome conversation, were some of my most awesome times. Somehow the stars seemed brighter with a belly warmed by liquid fire.

Shared Passions

Before we were married, Bob came to my parent's house for Thanksgiving. It was a special occasion because my brother, "Matt," was home, which was rare. A smart fellow, he's been studying for most his life. He's got a Bachelors and a Masters degree, and is working on his Doctorate. In some kind of astro-physic-cosmic-particle kind of science that's so over my head I feel like Ralph on The Simpsons.

My brother and Bob really hadn't gotten to know each other well and I guess I was desperate to make some kind of connection between them. They didn't have much in common so I was fairly screwed from the beginning. Matt had studied Astronomy, Physics, liked computers and science, Ultimate Frisbee, and D&D growing up. Bob had lived in Spain for a year, dropped home-made water bombs on campus, and liked classic cars. O-k-a-y, not much at all.

But then my steel-trap mind (yeah, right!) caught hold of a connection and blurted it out:

"Hey, you guys have something in common. Matt, you've studied heavenly bodies and Bob studied "a-broad!"

Needless to say my dad wasn't real pleased with THAT dinner conversation!

Leather and Laces: a shortie by Bob

Last night before I went to bed, I decided to take out the trash. I found my leather timberland Mocs beside the couch, and put them on. When I tried to tie them, I had about one pitiful inch of rawhide lace in each hand with which I could hardly be expected to tie a knot. Cricket (our cat) has struck again.

I tripped outside to perform my chore anyway in my new, loose, floppy shoes.

Cricket must have felt really bad about what she had done, and this morning in the bathroom, she gave the stolen laces back to me. I saw her start to writhe and stick out her tongue in a rhythmic movement that could only be compared to some obscene, satanic Hokey-Pokey ritual. Picking her up off the rug in front of the sink, and putting her ass in the sink, I watched her as she projectile vomitted (bazooka-puked) all of my missing laces.

Then she just stared at them in the sink for about 5 minutes, not really knowing what to think about what had just happened.

I decided to wear loafers today, by the way.

The Foot-Bone's Connected To - Someone Else!

I was sitting in a restaurant booth with my husband, Bob, and his brother, Scott. I could feel Bob's foot next to mine, so I started rubbing it. He moved it away. My foot found his, and again, started to rub it. Suddenly Bob's foot moved in an IMPOSSIBLE way. It swung out three feet in a direction it'd take a broken limb to re-create. Suddenly I realized I'd been playing footsies with my brother-in-law!


I had a headache that made Phineas Gage's metal bar seem like a toothpick. I was sitting on the floor, during my weekly Resident Assistant staff meeting. Looking from one face to the next, I was so puzzled I couldn't concentrate. Finally I had to interrupt the Head Resident, and the other five women I'd known for months, to ask an important question. "I have such a horrible headache. I know your name (pointing) is Jen, but can the rest of you tell me your names again because I can't remember who you are."

With amazement upon their faces, they went around in a circle telling me their names. After the meeting I returned to my room and slept for three straight hours.

The Family Jewels

My family used to rent a beach house every summer in Ocean City, New Jersey, until we couldn't afford it anymore. After coming in from the beach one day, my dad decided to take off his trunks outside, right on the front porch. He'd sorta hid himself behind a towel, and walked in wearing only that. My family was a little shocked that he'd done that, with the chance that neighboring renters might see.

As my dad walked passed me, a sudden impulse seized my eight year old self. I acted on it. I grabbed the back of his towel and showed my dad's ass to everyone, screaming something probably, like "Eeeeee-eeeeee!" Everyone laughed, but suddenly I realized what I'd done and I took off running. Locked myself in the bathroom for two hours, scared that he'd be mad and want to spank me.

Early Bird

When I was going to graduate school, I liked to arrive to class early. Even though I only lived about 10 minutes away, I would arrive about 45 minutes before class started.. Sometimes an hour early. Iíd sit and read until everyone showed up. One time, at the beginning of a new semester, I got to class early as usual and waited. And waited. Finally, 45 minutes after class was supposed to start, I left and went home totally confused, to check my schedule sheet. I had shown up early, all right. An entire week early.

Thatís not the worst of it however. The following sememster the same thing happened. Me. No professor. No students. Checked my shedule, which I had again forgotten at home. Iíd gone to class an entire MONTH early.

Random Act

Driving home from work the other day I stopped to get gas. I noticed this grunge-looking kid at the opposite pump. Big baggy jeans, knit cap pulled low on his head, and a sullen screw-you look on his face. But he was driving a classic Mustang in great condition and I decided to surprise him. As he walked nearby after cleaning his windshield, I spoke up. "Is that a í64 Ĺ?" (The half part is very important.) His head jerked up in surprise, "Yeah, it is." "Itís nice," I said. A big grin spread over his face. "Thanks! Youíre the first person that ever said anything."

Ignorance Is Just Plain Silly

True story that supports my theory that people are getting stupider all the time:

Two young women were talking in the business where my husband works. One was talking about Marthaís Vineyard had how nice it was. The dialogue follows:

"Marthaís Vineyards is a great place to visit in the summer."
"Oh, Iíve never been down there before."
"You mean up there, right?"
(considering that Marthaís Vineyard is very much North of here.)
"Oh, yeah. Iím not real good with history."
(Another pause. Not quite sure if sheís joking)
"Well, how are you with geography?"
"Oh, Iím terrible at science, too."

Uh, boy. This is the same girl who went out and bought a brand new Jeep Cherokee that she couldnít afford. She was going to school to get her Bachelors degree so she could get a better-paying job. Therefore she quit school to afford the Jeep. A year later, she decided she could make it through that deeply flooded street, and her jeep was filled to the gills with water. Pass the scalpel and the speculum, please. (Oooh, what I said!)


When my mom was a kid, Pepto Bismol didn't exactly coat, soothe, and relieve. The taste of it so disgusted my mother that it made her toss her proverbial cookies. One day she walked outside her house to discover her brother painting his car that exact lovely shade of Pepto Pink. After staring at it a few minutes, she ran inside. And threw up. (Note: Just after my uncle finished painting his Pepto car, and he was taking it for its first ride, he got into an accident. Totalled it. You'd think a neon pink car would be so easy to see?)

Grade School Cheater

As fourth graders we all had to create posters and slogans for a safety contest. My poster was pretty lame. I had no idea what to write for my slogan. But there was this sign on one of the streets in my town and I thought it was pretty good, so I copied it down. It said, "If you want to avoid that run down feeling, LOOK both ways before crosssing the street." (The o's in look were eyes.) I won two tickets to a Phillies-Cubs baseball game. No one knew I cheated (I think). I never went to the game. My father didn't feel like taking me.

On Horseback

I lived in a very residential neighborhood as a kid. Just house, house, house. The sister of a friend of mine (on that street) used to take care of a horse boarded at a riding school up the road a bit. So every once in a while, she'd bring the horse down to the neighborhood to groom it.

Whenever I heard that clip-clop of hooves I'd shoot out of the house like a rocket and run up the street. After they groomed Shadoo, all the kids would ride it. Bareback. Once, the sister handed me a little stick, and told me "Shadoo will obey you better if he thinks you'll smack him with the stick." So I climbed up, got seated, said "Giddyap!" and tapped Shadoo with the stick.

Well Shadoo took off like a rocket right down the street! I clung to his back, legs cramped around his barrel chest, two fists full of mane. And stupidly, I kept saying "Whoa, whoa!", pulling on the reins, while still tapping Shadoo's rear with the little stick! (Stupid rider, Shadoo must have thought.) Shadoo finally stopped when I ran the horse right onto my front lawn, my mom at the door with her mouth open like Shadoo was coming in for tea. (The next morning I couldn't pull my legs together they were so sore from holding onto the horse!)