This is part two of our celebration of the beginning of our eighth year together. The podcast this week features the top five downloaded stories from the Personal Audio Cds. I was really surprised at some of the results, and you might be too. But we’re talking about Audio here, so to check out the list for yourself, please go to www.dicksummer.com/podcast
Meantime, you might be interested in a trip my Lady Wonder Wench and I took to the Wallmart up the street. It was time to replace our outdoor grill. So we looked at the picture on the boxes that were stacked up to oxygen mask levels, and picked one out.
I didn’t see the small print notice on the box until just before the checkout guy ran his magic ray gun across the bar code, and the cash register said ca-ching. The small print said, “Free assembly available.” I froze. My Lady Wonder Wench was with me, and she said, “What’s the matter?” Not wanting to stammer in public, I simply pointed to the notice. She immediately went into wise guy wife mode. She said, “Don’t worry about that, you can ask Randy next door to help you with it.” “Oh yeah?” I replied… in that incisive, confident, worldly way that is the trade mark of “Louie Louie Generation” guys everywhere.
If you’ve been connected with this blog for awhile, you’ll remember that Randy is my next door neighbor… a very nice guy…a top flight fish whisperer, the neighborhood New Year’s Eve party giver, and a fellow plastic potato pop gun warrior. But if you are a “Louie-Louie Generation” guy, you know damn well there would be a blizzard in August before you would ask your buddy next door for help in assembling ANYTHING, let alone something as simple as an outdoor grill. “Ha,” I said to my Lady Wonder Wench with a disdain verging on panic. Then she did it. She gave that Lady Wonder Wench Witchy Smile, and purred, “Maybe I can help.” Any experienced wife will do that when she wants something done quickly and she knows exactly where her husband thinks he has his ego safely hidden.
You probably know the rest of the story. Box manufactured in Taiwan, frame from Bangladesh, bolts made in Kazakhstan that don’t quite fit the nuts imported from Nigeria, and instruction manual written in Baghdad, by a terrorist wannabe who took the job because he was seething with anger at the United States but was rejected for a suicide assignment by his neighborhood terrorist organization by reason of excess insanity.
His revenge was swift and sweet… helped by the fact that the manufacturer made several models of the grill, but only this “one size fits all” instruction book. Ooohh, you’ve been there, guys…I know you have. But I did it! And the end result bears a distinct resemblance to the picture on the box. Except for the pieces left over. And a wire hanging down. And the kind of rakish angle of the cover. And the propane tank doesn’t quite fit. But… “Oh, you’re so wonderful” said my Lady Wonder Wench…as any experienced wife will do when she wants something else done quickly. The “something” being that it was about time that I cut the lawn for the first time this season.
I have a question. Why do we cook out? We have a nice kitchen, with a microwave oven and granite counter tops on which we can put our meal. Does hamburger really taste better served with ketchup, relish, flies, bees and moths? And why do guys who never cook indoors, do all the cooking outdoors? I guess when it comes to smoke, flames and blood on an outdoor grill…it’s a guy thing.
And while I’m asking you questions, why do we buy grass seed, plant it, water it, fertilize it, grow it, then cut it, and cut it, and cut it, and cut it…and then throw away the stuff we cut ? I think something has come loose here…besides the handle that looks like it’s about to fall off the propane grill.
Gotta back up a little. If you just connected with this blog, you may be scratching your head and asking, what is the “Louie-Louie Generation?” If you remember record hops… you are a member of the “Louie-Louie Generation.” I did a lot of record hops when I was a disc jockey. And any time the kids stopped dancing, I’d haul out “Louie-Louie” and the party would start cooking again. “Louie Louie” was the perfect guy dance…no complicated dance steps, and an excuse to get very close to a girl’s ear and softly sing your version of the “dirty” lyrics. I seem to remember that some of the more popular girls liked “Louie Louie” too…and I think it was for some of the same reasons.
As I have carefully explained in my new book, Staying Happy Healthy And Hot…available at Amazon dot com…it doesn’t really matter how many birthdays you’ve had…you can consider yourself a member of the “Louie-Louie Generation” if a lot of your conversation these days includes words like “prostate,” “ouch,” “vitamin E,” “cholesterol,” “stress,” “diet,” and…”whaaaatt?” It happened so fast, didn’t it? It seems like just when we started getting rid of our pimples, we began suffering from precocious ab-deflation.
“Precocious ab-deflation” is a highly technical term I made up a few years ago. It comes from the ancient Latin word “pre,” which means “before” … as in “pre-marital sex,” and the ancient Brooklyn-ese word “coaches…which in ancient Brooklyn-ese means “wise people”…as in “good sports teams have wise coaches.” So “precocious ab-deflation” means we are losing our abs before we’ve had a chance to get wise to what was going on. (It works better when you say it out loud.)_
Any way…the hamburger patties are made, there’s a big wooden spoon in the potato salad, a couple of cold brewskies with our names on them on the ice…so it is now time to turn on the propane, hit the igniter, and we’ll have a delicious start to our eigth year together. Assuming when I hit the igniter, that the back deck doesn’t blow up.