Stupid Things I Have Done

Hey World, it is Twoferone Day. Who knew?

So…stupid things I have done…yes…there are many.

Disclaimer: This is not a complete listing. It is late and 2010 is upon us. Entries are posted in random order and should not be perceived as a timeline of Chicken’s life.

1. The inspiration for this blog and a cautionary tale: Last weekend I finally got around to cleaning out my pocketbook, purse, bag, fifth circle of hell, whatever…anyway. In the bag I came across three of those little key chain spray things that you can buy nowadays. Two were breath freshener. One was antibacterial spray. Guess which one I have been spraying in my mouth for the last two weeks?

2. One of my first waitressing jobs was at a (then) ultracool restaurant/bar called “Raoul’s Roadside Attraction” (yes, named after the book and yes, the only reason I weaseled myself in there). Anyway, one of the owners of said bar, P, was this guy who wore pirate shirts, black leggings, and wore his hair long and curly long before Johnny Depp made it cool. In fact, P was so out of style for his era that he was, obviously, beyond style and thus, like his bar, ultracool. P was an original. P made me nervous. One morning I am going through the opening check list and P is sitting at the bar most likely making a drug purchase (but of course I am thinking ultracool boss is making ultracool business deal) and I am making coffee. The way I always make it. And in that annoying mosquito buzzing in your ear fashion that you only notice after 10 seconds or so, I realize I am being watched. P says, “Chicken, are you pouring HOT water into the coffee maker?”. “Yes, P, I am” says I. “Why?” says P. “Because”, I say, very matter of factly, “it takes less time for the coffee to get hot this way”.

3. My favorite cousin’s name is CCool. When we were growing up, I spent nearly every weekend at her house. Why? Because her parents were kind enough to practice the then favored child rearing strategy of benign neglect. So CCool and I are on the sun porch of family home, which happens to be 20 feet or so above the ground. Maybe I exaggerate. I don’t know. I was 8 for God’s sake. It was high, though, and built over the driveway. The concrete driveway. CCool and I are sitting there in the middle of summer vacation and we are BORED!!! CCool has the very bright idea of playing parachute. We lug some couch cushions down to the driveway because, hey, we are not dumb. Concrete landing pads may be fine for people with actual parachutes, but that would not be us. Then we go back up to the sun porch and hoist ourselves onto the railing. Man, it was high. CCool says, “okay, go ahead”. I say, “Why do I have to go first?”. CCool says “because it is more fun to go first and you are company. But don’t worry, I will be right behind you, stick a needle in my eye and hope to die”. Well. That’s serious stuff. And off I go. I am lying slightly to the left of the couch cushions nursing my broken ankle when CCool says, “okay, here I come….”

And I say, “Don’t do it CCool”

4.) I did not make CCool stick a needle in her eye.

5.) After jumping around all night on one foot pretending I was playing a game of seeing if I could hop around all night on one foot, I was eventually found out. And when asked by formerly benign neglectful parents but now fairly pissed off CCool Aunt and Uncle, “Who the hell’s bright idea was this?” I said…”mine. my idea”.

6.) I used to play trumpet. It was one of the ways I defined myself in my youth, being a little too nerdy to know that being a girl trumpet player was not really where it’s at in eighth grade. Around about November or so, the cool radio station that my older brother listened to after school every day held a talent contest. Based on the Gong Show, Contestants would call in and if they were the 10th or 8th or whatever caller, they would have the opportunity to display their talent on air and the listening public would have a chance to vote on whether or not this person would be eligible to compete in the grand final LIVE talent show, hosted by radio talents ‘whoever’ and ‘whatshisname’, or gonged back into anonymity. Inspired by the comedic renderings of three goofballs in my class who gave it a try and made the grade, I decided to have a go.

7.) I called and called and called, trumpet in hand, and finally got my chance. And I also got through to the finals and did not get the gong. Which has, frankly, always been somewhat of a mystery to me. Was no one listening to radio that day?

8.) I considered this a great victory and I went. To the finals. And having been a late bloomer and still more admiring (secretly) of the Tom T. Hall and Charlie Pride 8-track tapes my father listened to rather than Casey Kasem’s top 40, I played ‘I Walk the Line’ on trumpet for three hundred 13-22 year olds. LIVE. In my Sunday School dress.

9.) My oldest child was always precocious and, maybe because I was young and immature when I had her, always seemed to me wise beyond her years. S was a great little companion. Great conversationalist, brilliant at memory games, very athletic, and never one to do worrisome things like get into cabinets, go outside alone, put things in her mouth…I say this in defense of what comes next. Normally, S was a very good traveler but when we were transferred to Connecticut (right around the time she turned a year old) and driving home often on the weekends, she eventually got tired of the four hour trip and had no problem sharing her dissatisfaction with her parents. Here we are, on 89 during rush hour on a Friday night, and S has been screaming her head off for pretty much the past hour. We stop at McDonald’s. We get French Fries. S likes them. All is good for 10 minutes. Then it starts again. Nerves are fraying. S’s father, who is driving, says, “Can’t you DO something????” And because I am not the type of mother who would EVER endanger her child by taking her out of her car seat in a moving vehicle in order to comfort her, I give S a container of pennies to play with. Because…read above…rembember? She NEVER does that. Except now S is mega-pissed. All is quiet in the back seat. Husband sighs. Chicken Sighs. S… awfully quiet…I look back to see how the penny playing is going. And there is S sitting in her car seat, glaring at me, with both cheeks stuffed full of pennies.

10. Between the years of 17 and 21, I traveled around a lot in New England and lived in a few different places. One of them was North Conway, NH. I lived there for about a year, made a lot of friends, and when I moved again, I often went back to visit. When I moved to North Conway, I had been living in Portland, ME. When I left No. Conway, I moved home to central Maine. So I knew how to get to North Conway from Portland. When I moved home, I still thought I knew how to get to North Conway. You take Route 4 to 95, drive towards Portland, get off in Gorham and take 116 to North Conway. It was a long drive, like four hours, but no sweat, it was worth it because I loved my friends. Until they dug out a map after listening to me whine about the long drive and showed me how, effectively, I was driving from point A to point B to point C when I could have just skipped point B and made it in 1.5 hours. To say that I am geographically challenged would be an understatement. Someday I will write a post about places I wanted to go and couldn’t find.

Okay that’s enough fun for y’all at my expense. Sleep tight and remember, it’s not the destination but the journey that counts.

Take care,

  2 comments for “Stupid Things I Have Done

  1. Celeste
    December 16, 2009 at 7:08 am

    See now, I knew there was a reason I couldn't sleep…my subconcious knew you were posting again tonight. Good stuff, you can cross me off your Christmas list as this is the best present ever…what?!?! I wasn't on your Christmas list?!?! That hurts Chicken, that really hurts…Now I have to return the custom made Les Paul guitar I bought you 😉


  2. December 16, 2009 at 2:32 pm

    No, you were definitely on my list, CB. Jake talked to Santa/Jesus who got in touch with your wish list. Glad you like it. I'll be watching the mail and thanks. I smashed my last guitar in one of my Rockstar fantasies. It seemed like a good idea at the time. Now am adding it to the “list”.


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