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5:49 a.m. - 2003-08-11

TAKE ME TO THE RIVER

Hi!!!

For those of you who aren't weekend warriors, there was a whole buncha updating going on in this lil' space!!!

You can go here to read a quick recap of my excursion last week that kept me from updating like the bitch I am!!!

You can go here for a more in-depth look at my week!!!

And you can go here for a cute little survey thingie that I filled out because I'm all about the cute little survey thingies!!!

Does that sound like fun?!!!

Of course!!!

I am the king of the three exclamation point exclamations!!!

Yay!!!

...Alright...enough of that cheery shit.


In yesterday's entry, I alluded to a Riverfest that the family went to on Saturday.

It took place in this ... well ... keep in mind we're in Alabama ... this hillbilly podunk town where the locals share one set of dentures and pass it around on "Corn Night".

Even though the town is about 20 miles away, I've managed to avoid visiting it for the past seven or so years because I'm a bit taken aback by cities where every house has a front porch with a mongoloid sitting and playing a banjo and staring an evil stare at me as I slowly drive past, shivering and shuddering.

We get to the "downtown" area and the place is crawling with large men in torn t-shirts with strategically placed tomato sauce stains on them, swigging beers at 10 a.m.

Yay.

I get out of the car, tear a few holes in my shirt, pour some of Andrew's juice on it and we're off to Riverfest.

Susie was actually working a S0uthern Living booth at the Riverfest. So we found that and she introduced me to her cohorts in home decor crime. I was Mr. Nice Husband, shaking each hand and telling them that I had heard a lot about them. Truth was ... she talked about them a lot ... I just never bothered to listen.

Andrew and I decide to go explore the area and see what Redneckfest has to offer.

It didn't take us long to stumble across the Petting Zoo. Naturally, the acrid smell of goat shit hanging in the air like a thick blanket of funk helped us in our endeavor.

We get there and it's a buck to get inside and pet the shit out of some animals.

Fine. I've got several dozen bucks in my wallet for a change. I can afford to pay for the poor sad little redneck kids standing on the outside of the petting zoo who don't have any money to go inside and pet the animals as well.

I DON'T do this.

But I could have if I wanted to.

I mean...c'mon. If I had coughed up ten bucks for these kids to accompany us, they would have petted all the animals to death, leaving nothing for my son.

Fer chrissakes...they probably would have eaten the one-legged chicken or something.

Anyway, I get Andrew in there and he is terrified to get down.

"Do you wanna get down and pet the sheep?" I ask Andrew.

"No! No! No!" he says shaking his head violently and clinging to me like Liza Minelli clinging to her last shred of dignity.

"How about the piggies?" I said, gesturing to some baby pigs. "Do you want to pet the baby piggies?"

"No! No! No!" he says.

Fine.

That's a buck well spent. I'm wallowing around in random animal shit, lugging a 30-lb kid around who's fucking horrified at the prospect of touching miniature animals in a 10 by 10 pen.

Whee indeed.

So we leave the petting zoo and he sees a bridge going across a small ravine.

"Bridge! Bridge! Bridge!" he shouts, pointing at the bridge and wriggling out of my arms.

I blame that goddamned Dora the Fucking Explorer.

In Dora's defense, she's probably taught Andrew more than any other source on earth at this stage. The kid can count to five in Spanish, 20 in English and has learned a slew of new words from that show.

Including "bridge". Because it seems like Dora, who's always fucking exploring, never fails to run up on some bridge and act like a bridge is as good as a mind-numbing orgasm.

So Andrew hauls ass to the bridge as I lollygag behind him because it's 92 degrees in the shade and this fat old man ain't as spry as he used to be.

Plus, I still had enough alcohol in my system from the previous week to kill most college students.

So he gets to the bridge, I'm about 20 yards behind him and I'm yelling "Wait Andrew! Wait!"

You know...huffing and puffing my ass off.

Andrew sticks his head through these slats and looks down at the small creek 50 feet below.

I panic.

These slats are so far apart that he could easily maneuver his body through them and take one last leap to his little baby death.

And there I'd be. Standing there, wheezing like a cancer patient going "Gasp....STOP!! Gasp...STOP ANDREW!!!"

It ain't easy to stop when you're plunging at 90 mph.

Somehow, somewhere, I get this burst of energy. It's like that energy you always hear about where a Mom lifts a car off her kid like Superman and rescues the goofy little shit, but it's a little too late because the kid's ribcage and bone structure now has the consistency of the insides of a Pixy Stick.

I zip over to Andrew at lightning speed and snatch him away from the edge of the bridge.

"Wait for Daddy," I instruct him.

"Bridge!" he says...hauling ass to the other side of the bridge.

He did some strange Dora dance where he would stop running, stick his arms out to his side, and teeter back and forth on his feet while blathering something about a bridge.

He did this like every ten feet.

Luckily, as stupid as this dance looked ... we were currently in the City of Rednecks and he didn't really stand out.

We crossed back and forth on the bridge for about an hour as Andrew ran head first into several redneck crotches that were trying to cross the bridge.

Finally, he tired of acting like Dora and we moved on.

Where Andrew spotted ... The Booth of Cheap Plastic Crap!!!

This booth had several blow-up toys like crayons and cell phones as well as whistles and plastic ants.

It was shit that the rednecks probably bought in bulk at the Dollar Tree, blew it up with their toothless, drooling mugs and sold for five bucks.

...To idiots like myself.

Andrew saw a blue ladybug and fell in love with it.

"Ladybug, ladybug, ladybug," he said, hugging the air out of this cheap piece of shit.

"How much for the ladybug?" I asked the wretched old hag in the mildewed lawn chair.

She had to think for a second and size me up in her head, trying to guess how much I'd pay for this ugly assed crap.

"Five bucks," she said, wiping the tobacco spittle from her chin with her forearm.

"I'll take it," I said as Andrew had already thrown the ladybug to the ground and was dry humping it like a wild dog.

As SOON as I paid for the ladybug, Andrew tossed it aside to see what else the Booth Of Cheap Plastic Crap had to offer.

He spotted some key chains.

Now, to the best of my knowledge, the boy doesn't have any keys.

But damn if he didn't need him two keychains...one with a duck wearing sunglasses on it and the other with a soccer ball attached to it.

He put those rings on his fingers and slung them around like he was the proudest kid in the whole Riverfest.

Fifty cents apiece.

A small price to pay for my son's happiness.

So now I'm out six bucks to Granny and her Plastic Crap.

Granny senses I'm an easy mark.

"I bet that little boy likes Dora the Explorer," she says, pulling a blow-up Dora doll out of thin air.

Andrew's eyes lit up and he screamed "DORAAAA!!!"

She handed Dora to Andrew and he hugged her so hard I thought he'd bust her cheap plastic blow-up spine.

Now I had a ladybug and two keychains in my hand as Andrew strolled off, hugging the shit out of Dora.

"How much?" I grumbled.

"Five bucks," she toothlessly grinned.

I plunked yet another five bucks down on the table and said "Thanks a lot" really sarcastically.

Goddamned toad woman.

By the time we got home, each of these cheap pieces of crap were a distant memory.

He was more happy with a plastic ball that he's had since he was born.

Kids.

They've got a mind of their own.

Except redneck kids, who apparently have to take turns sharing one.

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