Ladies and Gentleman, Meet Dark & Twisty Meredelf Grey, Our Elf on the Shelf

I never PLANNED to get an Elf on the Shelf. In fact, the first I ever heard of the damn thing was when a co-worker told me about Jen Mann from People I Want to Punch in the Throat being a hilarious mom blogger who wrote about the Elf on the Shelf. Until then, I was blissfully unaware.

After that point, I jumped into the elf judgement. The elf hatred. The oh-my-god-really-Santa-isn’t-good-enough-for-you-people judgy judgy bullshit. I swore I’d never get one. I planned a life without an elf. Even if tiny humans were to happen upon my world, it would be tough cookies for the kids, because their elf was still secretly hidden (and never coming out to spy visibly.) I was down with this plan. Until I wasn’t.

A Skypeversation with Katie

A Skypeversation with Katie

I still think the elf is SUPER creepy. But I kept thinking of all the fun I could have with the elf.

And so a few weeks ago, I went out and bought one. And then I took her home and put her on a shelf. And I thought about names for her… I wanted someone strong, and maybe a little sassy. So I came up with a little list of possible names for her.

Name ideas for your girl elf on the shelf

Grown-Up Names for Elf on the Shelf

Okay…Sort of grown-up names… *cough* kid at heart *cough*

Elizabelf Bennet. She won’t settle for less than love.

Princess Elfsa. She can build ice castles in her sleep.

Britnelf Spears. She’s stronger than yesterday…and she’ll probably do it again.

Katniss Elferdeen. She fights hard, and she’s not afraid to say no.

Jennifer Lawrelf. She might fall down a lot, but she’ll laugh with you about it.

Hillary Clintelf. Because she gets more flack than she deserves. And she’s a pretty strong lady.

Meredelf Grey. She’s stronger than she thinks, and she can really hold her tequila. Sold to the tequila drinking doctor with mommy issues who’s bad with sisters.

When I brought her out for the holidays, she BEGGED me to take her Black Friday shopping at the liquor store. She said tequila was on sale, and she just HAD to get a bottle. While I shopped for wine and whiskey, Meredelf scampered off to another aisle. I found her in the tequila aisle swooning.

Elf on the shelf at the liquor store Meredelf Grey loves tequila

I really had to drag her away from the booze, but we made it home safely, and sober. She was practically pleading with me to buy it. Unfortunately, I tapped my budget with other shit. I think she’s going to take it out on me. I’ve heard she’s really good at holding grudges.

Do you have an elf on the shelf? What did you name her (or him)? If you don’t have one, what would you name your elf?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Things NOT to do When Spring Daylight Savings Time Hits. A Cautionary Tale.

And by cautionary tale, obviously, I mean shit I already did. And probably shouldn’t have done. Because holy fuck, I’m feelin’ it today. And yesterday.

Mostly, I think Daylight Savings Time is stupid, but that’s another topic for another day.

Instead, let’s get into the ridiculous shit I did this weekend without thinking about the time change designed to fuck up one’s life. Let’s just call this… A letter to me 365 days from now. Don’t forget, Christine (that’s what I call myself when I’m lecturing myself). This shit’s important.

  1. NEVER plan on going out drinking (when you pretty much never go out drinking) and expect to be functional the next day. Just don’t. Even if it’s a bachelorette party. You plan on a day wasted napping, snacking, watching House of Cards, New Girl and playing Simpsons Tapped Out on your tablet. You won’t even get to write a blog post. Trust me. You’ll be useless.

  2. Honestly, you probably shouldn’t consume more liquor in one night than you have in the last month combined. You’re not in college anymore, sweetheart.

  3. NEVER leave your blinds cracked open. You don’t remember this from last fall when it was still warm (pretty much EONS ago), but the sun coming in your room in the morning? Sucks. Especially after a night of drinking. When you’re crabbier than normal. Dumbass.

  4. NEVER plan your time at the gym at the crack of dawn after the time has jumped ahead an hour. And more importantly, DO NOT schedule an appointment with your trainer at 9 am. That’s just stupid. You’re a moron. If you’re lucky, the aforementioned blinds will wake you up long before your training session…with enough time to text your trainer and tell her you’ll be in late. Like 6 hours late. If you get to her in enough time to not leave her house, she’ll be cool about it.

  5. Really you probably shouldn’t schedule an appointment with your trainer after a night of heavy drinking in general. I don’t care that you want to work off the calories of the taco dip, potato chips, penis cake, mozzarella sticks, nachos, and Greek fries from the night before…or the eggs, hash browns, corned beef hash, biscuits and gravy, and pancakes from your ginormous hangover breakfast…it’s probably not worth it. And it’s going to take more than one sesh to burn those calories, doll.

Obviously, I had a stellar weekend. And now it’s Monday. How was YOUR weekend? Did you do anything spectacular? How well did you handle the time change? Did you have to push your Sunday back a few hours or were you ready for it?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Let Me Tell You a Little Something About Beer and Working at a Bar

Happy Monday, Blog friends!

OK. I revoke my statement. I’m exhausted. And you probably are too. Weekends just sort of…take it out of us, don’t they? Especially when it feels like you’re trying to cram a week’s worth of life into 2 days. BUT…I had a great weekend. I hope you did too.

One of my many adventures this weekend was a pub crawl with a couple of my cousins. 4 bars. 4 bars that progressively got a little trashier, and I felt like we were in a college town (which we weren’t). The first bar was pretty nice. A tiny Irish pub with decent food and cold beer. But, being tiny, it got crowded. Fast.

So our plan was to stay one step ahead of the bar crawl. Which worked out mostly well. As the rest of the people showed up, we got our stamps and moseyed on out of there…on to the next bar… Except we had problems at every. Single. Bar. And not like normal problems.

The first bar was the most normal of issues…we ordered food and it took almost an hour for fried cheese curds, a reuben, and a BLT. And they ran out of the cider Brian and I were drinking.

The second bar…Oh the second bar. After enjoying a couple of 20oz Guinness’ at the first bar, my cousin wanted a smaller size glass of Guinness, so he ordered a small Guinness. I asked what they had on draft and she made it seem like the list went on forever. Then I asked if there was a beer list…Nope. I wanted something dark and devious, so I asked our waitress what she had that was dark. Her first suggestion was ciders. *cringe* OK. No. How about a porter? Just…bring me a porter. So she comes back to the table with a “Baby Guinness” shot for my cousin (Kahlua and Bailey’s) and Newcastle Brown for me. I’m sorry. What?

A Twitter response summed it up pretty succinctly…

Brown Ale is not PorterSo on top of our flighty, bitchy (and soon to be non-existent) waitress, the Heineken girls were wandering the patio in the most ridiculous dresses on the planet. I had to say this because. Gross. Tight white dresses that barely cover women’s asses just don’t do it for me. Especially when you can see every crevice and every line. I Googled it and apparently there are much better costumes out there for these sample girls…even the same dress in black looked better. The white was just…Gross. Guys, does that really do it for you? Seriously.

Obviously, we moved on.

So the next bar, the waitress was nicer, but she didn’t know what Leinenkugel was. She tried to repeat the name back and said it all wrong. Even though of the 4 tappers behind the bar, there was a Summer Shandy (by Leiny) she had no idea.

At the last bar, they finally had a beer menu posted. They had Adult Rootbeer (OMG, go drink this now) and Left Hand Milk Stout and a slew of other delicious beers. And I knew it because they had a freakin’ menu. They also apparently had pizzas, but weren’t serving them because the bar crawl was bringing food in. And I was starving. And had to wait another hour before the food.

Bar crawl

We managed to keep our spirits

So what did I learn? Bar crawls probably aren’t my favorite pastime. Not since college anyway.

Oh and if you’re going to work in a bar…Know the difference between a brown ale and a porter.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Wordless Meets WTF Wednesday: The Adventures of Olive Baby

Yeah… I have no clue. This was taken a few years ago on “Sunday Funday.”

Meet Olive Baby

Meet Olive Baby

Olive Baby loves a good snack

Olive Baby loves a good snack

Olive Baby works hard for the money

Olive Baby works hard for the money

Olive Baby is hanging out

Olive Baby is hanging out

Olive Baby gets thirsty sometimes

Olive Baby gets thirsty sometimes

Olive Baby goes for a swim

Olive Baby goes for a swim

Olive Baby goes for a swim

Olive Baby in her hot tub

Olive Baby takes a nap

Olive Baby takes a nap or gets stabbed. One of those.

 Blog Friends, Have YOU ever done anything strange when you were out at the bar? Tell me! Don’t make me feel totally alone and embarrassed here.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Monday memories: Because Valentine’s Day is totally stupid anyway

So this is the only peep you’re going to hear from me on the subject of that Hallmark holiday couples everywhere waste money on and singletons everywhere cry into their beer. As the theme for this morning’s Monday Memories is LOOOOOOOOVE, I thought I’d tell you about the one time before Brian that I had a “Valentine.”

I was in college and dating Rockabilly. (We had already broken up and gotten back together once, as I spent 2 weeks in London and he missed me and blah blah blah). So we had been back together for a couple of weeks when the VD rolled into town. Neither of us had really ever done anything for it…so I planned some stupid shmoopy crap and cooked dinner. I won’t tell you about the shmoopy crap (because I’m totally embarrassed for myself that it involved a scavenger hunt…), but I will tell you that dinner involved a bottle of champagne. That I drank. By myself. Rockabilly enjoyed a bottle of PBR, and I enjoyed a bottle of Korbel.

After dinner, his single buddy called to say he was at the bar. I told Rockabilly to head over there, I wanted to clean the kitchen first, and I would meet him there.

He left, and I immediately went down to the bedroom for a “nap.” An hour later, I saw that he was calling my cell, but I was groggy (read: drunk on champagne and passed the fuck out) and opted not to answer. I fell back asleep and woke up at 4 AM to discover that he had called me like 5 times, leaving messages as to which bar to find him at each time. And that he was home. Whoops! Guess I slept through the evening’s festivities. And I didn’t really feel all that bad. And neither did he. So I guess when we broke up (again) a few weeks later, it shouldn’t have been that much of a surprise.

Join me and my pals as we write memories to make you laugh. If you’d like to get involved, next week’s theme is FOOD!

Monday Memories
Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Shit I’m Really Glad My Mom DIDN’T Do

There are some things that I see and I think, Seriously?  I look back on my own childhood and thank the world that I had my mom doing things the way she did things.

Sometimes (not always, of course) I feel like my mom’s a little too hard on herself. Even though there are definitely times that my mom drives me or drove me up the wall…I think she did a fucking bad ass job of raising a couple of relatively normal human beings. So I’d like to take this opportunity to thank her for the shit she didn’t do. Because I am a better person for it.

Things My Mom Didn’t Do

Call alcoholic beverages “mommy juice”

Please. Please. Please for the love of God. Stop. Your children will eventually find out that you’re a lush. Calling it “mommy juice” doesn’t make it any better. It makes you sound silly. And drunk.

Now, I grew up surrounded by alcohol, without having alcoholic parents. My parents owned a bar. I knew alcoholics. I knew I didn’t want to be one. So I knew what booze was. I even knew when my parents were drinking it. Big fucking deal. Get over yourself. You aren’t the first parent to need a glass bottle of wine after a rough day. Call it what it is. Wine. Vodka. Beer. Whiskey. Name your poison…It’s okay, I promise. Your kid will thank you one day. Besides, I think I turned out okay.

Make alcohol seem taboo

I was allowed to taste everything, including, but not limited to wine and beer. I hated alcohol. It tasted gross. Children’s taste buds don’t actually LIKE booze (unless you’re drinking the super fruity stuff that tastes like candy. Don’t share that with the kids.) It’s the idea that it’s forbidden that makes so many kids experiment.

Sure I made jokes about drinking when I was a kid… When told I should drink MGD when I grew up, I told my older sister, Deven, that I would “drink Bud Light like my Daddy.” When she later told me that she would take me to a college party (at the age of 9) and get me a beer, I responded with, “I prefer cocktails.” In kindergarten, I drew a picture of a bar for what I wanted to be when I grew up. Instead of playing house or grocery store, we played bartender. But I’m almost 30 years old and I drink MAYBE once a week. So I think I’m alright on that front as well.

Give me a time out

Nope, I was never given a “time out” and asked about my feelings. Instead my parents would slap me on the ass and tell me that what I did was wrong. Seriously. Just like Pavolv’s pup, I knew when I did something bad and when I did something good. I was praised for good behavior, and taught not to be an asshole. I grew up with a healthy fear of punishment. Which is part of the reason I was such a Stepford child.

When I was an education major (twice), all of the books for child development were saying that you need to ask children about their feelings and why they did bad things. This pissed me off to no end. I even wrote a paper for Argumentative Writing in favor of corporal punishment for kids (when combined with a lot of affection.)  Mostly this pissed me off because I know kids who had that kind of parent…and I know kids like me who had parents who actually punished their kids, and you know what? We were the teenagers who didn’t end up drunk off our asses and naked in the middle of a public street…(Yes, this actually happened to someone).

Let Me Run Wild

Whether in a restaurant, the grocery store, or even a kid-friendly locale, my mother had us on strict orders to behave. We weren’t allowed to run around like assholes, we had to ask to leave the table at a restaurant (even to go see the lobster tank at Red Lobster), and we had to stay close to her in stores. In other words, we were well-behaved little assholes. Most of the time.

I remember being pulled out of a restaurant and getting spanked in the parking lot, after which we returned to the table, and I was a silently crying, but sitting and not yelling, little girl. Another time, I remember playing in someone’s basement for 20 minutes, and mom thought we were outside. When she couldn’t find us, we were no longer allowed to go to the pool with our babysitter that day.

Consequences. There were consequences to running wild. I see too many kids who dominate their parents, and the parents look frazzled and unsure of what to do…At which my point my mother would look at us and say, “I am the parent. You are the child. When you’re the parent, you can do what you want. Until then sit down and shut up.”

For the record, my dad’s pretty fucking awesome, too.

My first legal shot with my parents. (Isn't my mom short and adorable?)

My first legal shot with my parents. (Isn’t my mom short and adorable?)

What about you, Blog Friends? What are you glad your mom did or didn’t do? Will you do the same for your kids?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Confession Friday: Things I Did in College…

Ahh… not just things I did in college; but things I did in college that I STILL do today. Don’t judge me. In fact, I bet you do some of these things too. Be honest.

6 Things I Did in College That I Still Do Today

1. Use Febreeze as a substitute for washing clothes. Sometimes, I just don’t have time to wash my favorite pair of jeans…and I’ve already worn them 4 or 5 times. They could use a little freshening up. Especially when I pull them out of the hamper. From the bottom. Febreeze still works like a charm. (I don’t do it often and it’s never acceptable for socks or underwear…but I know it’s sometimes okay…until I find a pasta sauce/chocolate/soup stain on the shirt in question…several hours later…from the week before. Oops.)

Things I did in college that I still do today

I swear there’s a hamper under that pile… Also…this was a week ago. And I just did the laundry yesterday.

2. Waiting as long as possible to do laundry. I know that in college it was either take the laundry home for the weekend or break…or trek down several flights of stairs to the over-used laundry rooms, where dangerous or naughty things happen often and unexpectedly. (Seriously, go click that link. It’s one of the best stories I’ve written.) And I know that now it is a mere 4 feet from hamper to washer. But for some reason laundry just doesn’t happen as often as it should. (Of course, because Brian has significantly less clothing in general, I do have to do it more often than I did in college…but back then I would just go commando if I ran out of clean underwear…)

3. The 48 hour shower rule. Yes, I tend to shower every other day. I’m okay with this. If I’ve worked out, or have some strange odors coming from my body, I’ll shower sooner…But I mean, I wear deodorant. I brush my teeth. I wear clean underwear every day. I’m not totally gross. But when you’ve got hair the color of my hair and you want to keep it that color (especially considering how much it costs to get it that color)…you gotta be cautious with the hair washing/wetting.)

MAN, you guys probably think I’m the dirtiest creature ever. I promise that I’m not. I have excellent hygiene…I’m just a non-germaphobe who doesn’t like to do laundry and sometimes considers showering a chore. I don’t smell. I swear.

4. Go out of my way for a free meal. I know that I’m a grown up. I have some money. I am well-fed. But something about getting a free meal is exciting. And necessary. because I’m Polish and I don’t like to spend money if I don’t have to. So, I find free meals. And then I drive x amount of time to go and eat them.

5. I will fall asleep anywhere. Just last month…the night before Christmas Eve…I was exhausted. It was 3 AM. And yes…I passed out with my purse as a pillow on the floor of an ER curtained room. My mom freaked out on me for fear of the germies…but really it was the floor or a plastic chair. At least on the floor, I could stretch out.

6. I drink vodka. OK, so I don’t drink vodka in the mass quantities that I consumed in college, but I’m pretty impressed that I can still hold down my college poison without feeling like I’m still in college…Alright, so I can’t drink flavored Smirnoff anymore…but whatever. Bring on the Stoli.

There you have it kids…College me meets grown up me. Do you still do any of these things?

 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

5 Things I Learned From Yelp

In honor of my third year as Yelp Elite, I’d like to take a few moments to recognize Yelp for its utter awesomeness…And share with you a little poem I wrote.

After a conversation with Heather from The B(itch)log, I felt the need to share with you some really bad poetry. And by bad, I mean truly and most inspiredly awesome. (Yes, I made up inspiredly. Just think of me like the next Shakespeare. Trust me…it will make sense in about 5 paragraphs or so–depending on how long I ramble this morning.)

Heather believes that there is no such thing as bad poetry. I informed her that I once wrote a sonnet about Chicklets (yes, the gum) and asked if she wanted to take her comment back. She said no, which made me hunt for my sonnet about Chicklets…and I couldn’t find it in my vault of bad writing. One day…I promise. One day. But I did write another sonnet in my life. One to the people of Yelp. But first…

5 Things I Learned from Rockin’ with Yelp Across the Country

  1. You see, Yelp is not just a website. It’s a way of life. Whenever we’re looking for somewhere to eat, something to do, somewhere to go…we ask Yelp. We make friends around the country and they help us by writing honest reviews. Yelp is a community of good folks working together to make the positives and negatives known. Yelp is what you make of it.
  2. Not all reviews are created equally. You need to learn to read what’s not being said. That very very very sickly positive review? Might just have been written by the owner or an employee. That very very very angry review? Give everyone a break and read other reviews of that business as well as other reviews from the person writing. You’ll get a feel for whether you trust their judgement or not. I know that I never trust someone who wrote a positive review about the local dive club where everyone shares STDs and drugs. Ew.
  3. You can make new friends just about anywhere. When Brian and I arrived in Orlando for our trip to Disney World, I received a “Welcome to Orlando” compliment from one of the wonderful Yelpers in Orlando. How freakin’ cool is that?!
  4. Business owners who don’t like your review can be ass hats or rock stars. After I reviewed a certain cheese “mecca” poorly, I got a NASTY message from the manager. It was spiteful. And mean. And written with really bad grammar. And then I did some research, and discovered that he had written his very own review of his business. And I called him on it. And was nice. Because that’s how I roll. I’ve had other owners contact me and invite me back for a second chance. I almost always go. Because that’s how Yelpers roll.
  5. It’s OKAY to act like a kid. When Yelp gave me a giant bouncy ball with the Yelp symbol, I knew that I had found my place in this world. S’mores bars and dance floors and so much more…Yelp is fun!
S'mores bar

S’mores Bar-and you thought I was joking.

Things I learned from Yelp drinks

This was a “Jack Frost Martini,” but it was deadly and tasted like college (fruity with the taste of potent alcohol).

A Sonnet to the Big Wigs at Yelp

In order to maintain my elite status for the year 2013, I was asked to write to the big guys with an application and a good reason why I should be elite. I figured the best way to secure my status would be to write a poem. But not just any poem. I wanted it to be a motherfuckin’ Shakespearean poem. And so…I wrote a sonnet.

Quirky Chrissy: Sonnet 2

And now, a sonnet:

To the dear higher ups at the great Yelp,
The holidays and time to choose are here
My Yelp status is floating like a kelp
To be elite Twenty-Thirteen, it’s clear

My application for this honor, bright
with Yelp reviews, comments and stats so fair
includes a poem for your heart’s delight
to show you just how much I really care

And if I am worthy of this status
You can count on me to keep reviewing
Unless I get a sweet pet platypus
Because then I would be busy playing

Do not fret, dear Yelp elite deciders
I love Yelp, please keep me with insiders

Yelp Photo Shoots (Photos Taken by Andres D. and Swiped from Facebook)

Yelp Elite Event

Gettin’ my locks conditioned at the Yelp Fab Femme Fete

Excellent organic conditioning courtesy of Eko Salon and Spa in Orland Park, IL

Excellent organic conditioning courtesy of Eko Salon and Spa in Orland Park, IL

Yelp SWAG panties

Yelp SWAG! Panties anyone? Too bad they were a size small. Too tiny for my bootie!

Yelp Hair Salon Pictures

Just a funny picture of my faux ginger flying high

Yelp events

A Yelp Event at the Wilder Mansion with my pal, Cletus (remind me to tell you the story of this event sometime)

Yelp events with elite yelpers

The Rick Moranis look with the Yelp Crew at Glen Prairie

Thing I Learned from Yelp Elite Events

Making new friends at the Ylep Elite Events

Yelp Egg Nog Rumchata Martini

Sipping on a Rumchata Egg Nog Martini at the Glen Prairie

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Confession Friday: In Which I Talk About Black Wednesday

Confession Friday: I went out on Black Wednesday. In sweat pants. And drank water. At a bar.

I’ll bet you thought I was going to talk about Black Friday, didn’t you? Admit it.

So, every year since turning 21, I’ve joined in on the “everyone’s home for the holiday, no one has to work tomorrow, let’s go out and get shmammered like we’re still in college” holiday. The busiest bar night of the year, I spent many a Thanksgivings praying over my grandmother’s toilet, unable to consume so much as a piece of cheese throughout the day. (To be fair, this had also happened on Christmas and Easter…I was a bit of a lush back in my younger days.)

Some years, (back in the owning-of-the-bar years), I would be working–though I often turned down the shift in order to participate in the debauchery of drinking with my peers, my brother, and my dad.

Last year, Brian and I went out to a fancy-pants dinner with some friends, where we ate, drank, and were merry…instead of doing the bar scene. But there was that air of “we don’t have to work tomorrow” excitement.

This year, one of my best girlfriends is leaving me. Lily is packing up all her stuff tomorrow and moving to freakin’ Iowa. (I know what you’re thinking…who the hell moves from Chicago to Iowa?) I’ve been thinking that since the day she told me. But she’s moving.

And since her going-away-party was not really a chance to actually hang out with her…because she has a lot of friends and I couldn’t really get some legit Lily time out of it, I made her go out last night for karaoke at our local tavern of choice. Where we both drank water. And sang some karaoke. And I argued with some young early 20-something dude about almost everything.

Singing Karaoke

This was not Wednesday night. But I like this picture. Because I was skinnier then. And I was singing karaoke at Sal’s. Which is what I was doing on Wednesday night.

So I had fun doing the things we used to do before we got old. Except for drinking. Because we were both tired. And I don’t like to drive on amateur nights with any alcohol in my system. Because people are stupid. And my insurance is high enough.

Enjoy the long weekend, kids!

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Cheers to the Forest Fire

I promise I’m not really an asshole. I have a point.

(Hey Mom, let Dad read this one. Also, don’t cry. It’s awesome to have such great memories.)

So, Saturday was my dad’s 70th birthday.We were chatting about my blog, and he asked how he could read it. I explained it to him, though I’m not sure if he still understands. He’s really cute when he says, “Quirky Chrissy.” One day I’m going to film it and put it up here. But he asked if I ever wrote about the forest fire. I hadn’t, but I knew that I had to.

Mom shamelessly plugs my blog–I can tell she’s really proud that I am able to write about the crazy and make it sound adorable and endearing. I love that she does it though, because it spikes my readership. Moms are good like that… but she forgets to show my dad the tales I write…and he’s the opposite of tech savvy. His last technological achievement was playing Pacman on a table top machine. (Oh and the cell phone I made him get by bribing him with the Notre Dame Fight Song ring tone).  But he’s the best dad ever.

No one can believe that he’s 70. Especially not me. Back in my heavy drinkin’ days… Dad was one of my favorite drinking buddies. My first legal shot was with my parents. I used to hang out with dad at the family bar, doing shots of Jamo, showing off my mad skills that I learned in college (like how to open a beer bottle with my forearm), and reigning as Princess Flaherty, by my dad’s side.

My first legal shot

My first legal shot. Happy 21st birthday to ME. (Less than 2 hours later, I would have no idea which hand I wrote with, which was up, or that my skirt should be below my belly button…not above it.)

One of my earlier memories is of my estranged sister (obviously, before she was douchey and estranged), Deven, telling me that MGD was the best beer ever. I looked her square in the eye and said, “When I grow up, I’m going to drink Bud Light, like my daddy.”

And I did.

Of course, not for a while. My parents were pretty brilliant in the boozin’ world of raising kids. Nothing was ever “off limits” so to say… there was no mystery in alcohol. “Can I try?” was always met with a “sure, one sip.” This would typically be denied after a whiff of the beer, cognac, whiskey, wine, etc. in question.  But occasionally, my brother and I would go in for the kill and take a tiny swig, which we found revolting. Alcohol is definitely an acquired taste.

So we didn’t drink. We made it through high school relatively straight-laced. Friends of our parents called us the “stepford children,” because we weren’t drinking and driving, doing drugs, having sex, getting arrested, or any of the other crazy shit that many of their own children were doing… we were goodie two-shoes’. (I was terrified of my mother’s wrath…rightfully so, obviously. I was also afraid of getting caught and kicked off the cheerleading team. I fear reprimand. In life. Still.)

So, then I went off to college. And my dad bet me that I was going to come home and say, “Hey dad, pass me a fuckin’ beer.” He was always is always putting “fuckin” into my potential quotations. His biggest fear was always me meeting my future mother in law for dinner with this beauty: “Pass the fuckin’ potatoes,” which I would never say in front of Brian’s mom!

Not wanting to lose a bet…I made it a point to dislike beer. And find some nice older student to buy me liquor. As evident from previous posts about my college drinking habits…this was not a problem. For the first week, I called home every night. And every night Mom would ask, “Did you get drunk yet?” And every night I would say, “Nope, not yet.” Until one night on Geisert 8. And all hell broke loose.

So when my parents came out for parents weekend…and took me on a massive stock-up grocery trip at the Super Walmart…I was a little surprised, yet ridiculously excited when we walked down the booze aisle, and Daddy said to me, “What do you want?” I was like a kid in a candy store. It was the greatest thing ever. For a college freshman. I picked up a bottle of Smirnoff Raspberry and a bottle of Malibu. They were pretty much gone before my parents left for home that Sunday. I. Will. Never. Drink. Them. Again. Ever.

I came home that summer and not once did I ask Dad to pass me a beer. I still hated beer. I said, “Pass the fucking vodka.” And he laughed. The following summer, Dad and I shared many Bud Lights over long chats by our pool. One night we were talking about cheers and toasts. My dad looked at me, and said, “Christine, you come from a family that would drink to a forest fire.”

And so every once in a great while, Dad and I will drink to the forest fire. But only the ones that are done on purpose. We’re not monsters.

 

 

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