Monthly Archives: July 2013

There’s No Place Like Home?

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Wizard of Oz

Unless you grew up in a cave (or are my kids), the statement “There’s no place like home” immediately brings to mind a young girl, three strange and oddly familiar companions on a seemingly impossible quest to be granted their own heart’s one desire – in Dorothy’s case, to go home.

This summer, I performed in my fourth stage production of The Wizard of Oz.  The first time – at 6 years of age – I was cast as a munchkin (‘cause, well, I was short).  The second time – at 9 – I played Dorothy (with some bizarre glow-in-the-dark, dancing skeletons).  The third time – now 12 – I was the Scarecrow (because I could do the splits, of course).  And the fourth time, this summer – at the age-which-shall-not-be-named, I filled a variety of roles including dance captain, flying witch double, jitterbugger and Ozian.

All this really means is I have spent the summer, and possibly, a lifetime contemplating the whole idea of “there’s no place like home”. I guess you could say, since the age of 6, I have been trying to make sense of the concept – if you ever go searching for your heart’s desire, you shouldn’t look any further than your own backyard, because if it isn’t there, you never lost it in the first place.

This whole backyard idea is a problem for me. You see, I have always had the sense that searching in someone else’s backyard would garner better and more exciting results.  Clearly, the writer of this classic just could not have had my backyard in mind.  Nobody could possibly find anything in my backyard.  My backyard is always in some state of needing to be mowed.  It is filled with biting and blood sucking bugs, and the occasional snake.  It looks back on a house that is in bad need of a paint job and a back room addition that is 8 years in the making.   My backyard is perpetually messy, chaotic, and often flat out wild- weeds discernible from actual plants, big mole hole pit falls, branches falling on you when you least expect it, and dead squirrels hanging from trees (ok, this just happened once, but still…).

In someone else’s yard the pickings seem greener, lusher, much better groomed.   In someone else’s yard, I might not get bit, scratched, hit by unexpected objects or fall into holes.  In someone else’s backyard, maybe my heart’s desire wouldn’t be masked by an exploding termite nest and I might just stumble upon it instead of a fallen tree limb.

But just at the moment when I have had enough of my backyard and am ready to madly run into someone else’s and begin frantically rummage through their shrubs – hang the strange looks and possible police escort – something always happens…

I make the most perfect cup of coffee ever.

My cat, who usually denies my existence, comes to sit with me.

A random guy, holds the door open for an eternity waiting for me to enter.

Or best of all, my husband finally figures out a way we can get away for a few days before the dog days of summer are completely gone.

When this last one happens, I know then what is sure to come.  I will at last be allowed (welcomed even) to hang out in someone else’s backyard for a while. I will be able to look under a few of their rocks, contemplate their view, and dig around in their shrubs.   I will swat at their bugs, peer into their mole holes and dodge their flying greenery.

And when I return home my backyard will magically look a little bit greener, seem a little lusher,

and at the very least…feel freshly mowed.

Then, I will be ready to start searching in my own backyard again.

There’s no place like home.

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Word-Up: Show Me Your Weenus

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My summer has been as crazier than a redneck at an opera (my husband should know).   And while I continue to chuck back lemons at life , the little suckers appear to be getting smaller and easier to manage.  Anyway, all that means is that I have had less time to hang here on Sweet Spot.  So, I thought I would share one of my favorite moments from last spring.  Some things just never get old…especially boy humor, at least in my world.

I knew it!  I feared the day would come – the moment when I would finally be presented with undeniable proof I was failing as a parent.  I wanted to deny it, but the evidence was right there staring me in the face.  Clearly, I was raising a depraved sociopath.

You know the age old story, in the aftermath of a sociopath’s identification, when the neighbors wax poetic for the press?  Statements of disbelief such as:  “But, they were such a nice family”…  “Never heard a peep out of them”…”mostly kept to themselves”…”They had a lot of garden gnomes.”

Right, well, I could just see the entire future unfolding. How had it come to this?

You see, last weekend as we drove endlessly in the car from one activity to another, the irrefutable proof of my impending catastrophe occurred. I don’t know, maybe my kids were bored.  And what is it ‘they’ say?  Boredom is the devil’s playground?  Boredom is the Mother of Invention?  Either way, from the depths of the backseat, my son called out,

“Mom, I scraped my weenus, could you put a band aide on it?”

What?!

Before I could even process his statement, the situation deteriorated further. Apparently, my parental fiasco was farther reaching than just one dissolute sociopath as both boys continued in a flourish of depravity.

“Mom, my weenus is exposed”.

“I need some sunscreen for my weenus”.

“Hey, get your weenus out of my face”.

“Look, my weenus is all wrinkled”.

“I am going to touch you with my weenus”.

“I have the weirdest weenus, want to see?”.

The situation seemed dire at best.

But then, just as I was getting ready to take preventative action (you can google for a psychotherapist, right?), I was saved.  In the nick of time, I was informed by my little backseat degenerates their particular word “weenus” came with its own specific definition. However, just to be sure (and to have proof for possible future penal encounters – ha, get it?), I googled it myself- lo and behold:

According to Urban Dictionary:Weenus is the flap of skin on your elbow”.

Sigh of relief.  Apparently I am not raising a couple of depraved sociopaths, just a couple of depraved smart alecks.

But that I can live with, proudly.

For more word abuse, check out these earlier posts!

Word-Up:  Poop

Word-Up: We’ve Got Big Balls

Word-Up: Opus Anyone?

Word-Up: Get a Yob!

The Hippie: What’s Your Idea of a Good Time?

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There is this guy who lives in my house.  He has been around for a long time.  Point of fact, I married the guy 17 years ago this week.

He has some special skills:  he can fix most anything, never panics and makes me laugh on a regular basis.

He is fond of sending me notes like this – Destroy This Note After Reading, and this No Joke Left Behind.  And he is never one to shun a gratuitous laugh.

Every once is a while, when he has exhausted his home audience, he takes his “act” on the road…or rather, down the street to our local theatre, where he is sure to find  a fresh group of listeners (victims?) for his humor.

To celebrate my anniversary, I wanted to share the laughter with Sweet Spot readers in the form of a recent performance of his character,  The Hippie.

Gratuitous? probably…Funny? definitely.  In fact,  I can promise you some laughs. The wig alone, should get you started.

Enjoy

The Hippie

How we met:  True Love By Way of a Kitty Dance and a Bucking Horse

Other stuff: Til Death Do Us Part, Which May Be Sooner Than You Think