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8:31 a.m. - 2001-06-30

HERE'S A HOT DOG...TRY NOT TO GET TOO EMOTIONAL

So yesterday I had my "Goodbye" luncheon at work. Monday's my actual last day, but it's going to be a busy day so we had it yesterday.

You know how most companies will have a goodbye luncheon and it's a big extravagant affair? Everyone goes out to eat somewhere and they all sing "For He's A Jolly Good Fellow" and shower the departed with parting gifts?

Not my company.

Nope.

Our secretary went and bought three packs of hot dogs, some buns, two cans of chili and a bag of Fritos.

Goodbye Uncle Bob...have a hot dog.

Oh yeah...and since I'm the official grillmaster at the newspaper, it was up to me to go out in the back parking lot and grill my goodbye luncheon.

And then...heh...I ate by myself at my desk while everyone else went to their respective desks and offices and ate their hot dogs.

Oh yeah...and ice cream sandwiches for dessert.

Nine years. Here's a fucking hot dog.

Actually...I'm kinda shocked because THAT was more than we do for most people when they leave.

But I've been kinda pushy about a "goodbye luncheon" for the last two weeks.

I told them that I wanted not only a giant cookie from the mall with the words "Goodbye Uncle Bob, We'll Miss Your Ass" written on it in chocolate frosting, but I also wanted a chocolate peanut butter cake from one of the ritzy bakeries in town.

And I wanted a pinata for my going away party. Which...we've never thrown a going away party for anybody either.

But I've been very adamant about the pinata. And I've told everyone that I'm the only one allowed to hit it...nobody else can do it.

And I keep all the candy that falls out.

Because I'm the one going away.

Of course...this has all been a joke and I was shocked that the hot dog luncheon even took place.

If I walk in Monday and there's a pinata on my desk, I'm going to squirm.

I just know it.


Susie came home last night and we decided to go to Flip's for dinner.

Flip's is this local diner...they specialize in hamburgers...it's all decorated to look like a 1950s diner...lotsa chrome and neon all through it.

I like Flip's but not too many of my friends do. I had a pastrami burger ... it's the best pastrami burger in town, dammit.

Andy was the perfect baby while we were there. Never spoke, stared into the mirrors around our table and just grinned. Gave toothy grins to everyone else in the restaurant and got three compliments on what a beautiful baby he was.

I'm almost to the point where I'm going to start telling people that he won a contest for Most Beautiful Baby in Town, just to see if they believe me.

Almost, mind you.


After dinner, we went to K-Mart which now demands to be called "Big K" which is pretty foolish to me. You're K-Mart, dude. Deal with it.

Anyway, we go in and they're doing construction to transform this K-Mart into a Big K. Which means lotsa dust and white trash in the store.

Our K-Mart is in a pretty good section of town. But we saw the scourge of society in there last night.

We saw one family...and I know it's not nice to make fun of other people, so fuck ya...but they were just the nastiest looking family I've ever seen.

The dad's clothes were FILTHY. He was covered in dirt and grime, like he had been crawling on his belly through a junkyard.

Mom's hair was all matted and she was wearing a Jeff Gordon t-shirt that was faded and full of holes.

The kids looked so nasty like they hadn't bathed in weeks. The boy's face was covered in dirt and his t-shirt had several dozen stains on it.

I instinctively held my breath as we walked past them.

I'm sure they were nice people and lived in a very nice truck.

I just didn't wanna smell 'em, that's all.

We bought Andy a Pooh clock for his room and while we were waiting in line, I gave the clock to Andy and let him hold it and look at it.

I then noticed a pretty large spider on the package crawling towards Andy's hands. I grabbed the clock out of his hands and slapped the spider dead.

Welcome to K-Mart, soon to be Big K! Hope you've had your tetanus shots and brought along some snake venom remover!


We then went to our local Waccamaw Homestore which is going out of business. We went because everything was 60-80% off.

We found an inflatable bed for Andy or his friends when he starts having sleepovers. It's pretty cool. Also got him a shelf for his room for his toys and some lamp oil.

Everything was 60% off. Everything we saw was 60% off. We saw nothing that was 80% off.

So this prompted Susie to ask the cashier just what exactly was 80% off.

The cashier told her all damaged merchandise was 80% off.

Jesus Christ.

So if you want that pile of broken glass in the corner that used to be a vase...it's 80% off. Or maybe that coffee pot box with the coffee pot missing from it...it's 80% off, you lucky devil!

We got home and there was a message from my Coke-stealing socially retarded brother-in-law. He wanted Susie to call him.

I knew something was up.

This sonofabitch wants to borrow our camcorder next week to take to his 20-year high school reunion.

Holy shit.

First off...this camcorder cost over $1,000. I always say it costs $1,500, but that's with tax, and some software programs I bought that are supposed to make MPEGs of the videos and make my own DVDs according to the dipshit asshole kid that sold me the $100 program (It DOESN'T make DVDs...the kid lied to me).

Now then ... I can't stand my brother in law. Why on earth would I let him borrow one of my most expensive possessions to take to a party where people will be getting drunk and obnoxious?

My brother in law has a reputation for being a "breaker". I know I've written about it here before several months ago ... but he's broken more things in my home than Susie and I have broken combined. He's broken two phones, two clocks, our kitchen sink, my lawn mower, our television, my stereo ... that's just the stuff I can think of off the top of my head. Oh...my recliner as well. It still reclines, but it catches sometimes...he broke that with his fat ass.

It wouldn't be so bad if he broke something and then offered to pay for it. But if he breaks something, he's like "Oh well" and just continues doing whatever he's doing while I stand there with my jaw dropped.

If he breaks my camcorder (which history has proven that he probably will), he would NOT reimburse me for any work done on it and could NOT afford to buy me a new one.

Remember...the fucker's owed us $6,000 for almost two years now and hasn't paid us a dime.

ANNNNNND ... here's the real kicker ... this guy was HATED in high school.

And I mean HATED.

He was such a nerd that the other kids at school would throw rocks at him as he exited off the bus each morning.

I used to work with a guy about ten years ago who went to school with my brother in law. He even admitted to throwing rocks at him because (as he stated) "Everyone did it." He told me that my brother in law was the type who still tattled on people in high school, reminded the teachers of pop quizzes...and was just an overall geek.

My brother in law was tortured throughout his school life. My wife, his own sister, tried to distance herself from her nerdy brother in school. She sure as hell didn't want to be catching rocks with her forehead just by association every morning.

So now this dumbass wants to go to his high school reunion to face these people one more time???

Holding MY camcorder???

I don't think so.

I could understand wanting to go to your reunion if you had pulled a Bill Gates and did something with yourself in order to shove it in other people's faces.

This guy works in a local bank on computers. He's 38 and lives with his mother. He hasn't had a date in 13 years and is more than likely a virgin. He lives for Star Trek and all that shit and drinks way too many Cokes for his own good.

And he wants to face the people he was tormented by with all this information.

Holding MY camcorder.

Jesus Christ.

It really makes me want to go over to their house, and when he opens the door, pop him in the head with a large stone and say "SNAP OUT OF IT, YOU DORK!"

He's not getting my camcorder. He'd be there all of 30 seconds before one of the former jocks snatched it out of his hands and stomped it into a million pieces while he stood there with his hands behind his back and his head hung low.

It ain't happening.

It ain't.

Now I just have to come up with a good reason why he can't borrow it.

I think I'll tell him I sold it.

Yeah.

That's the ticket.

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