Thursday, August 26, 2010

Frowst has a fragile little mind

Tuesday was a hot day in San Francisco. It broke all records, ending up as the hottest day of any August day here in recorded weather history.

Frowst, an animal with a large mass of thick, long, fluffy black fur, did not handle things well. Normally he is the sort of independent, energetic cat who spends very little time with his owners, but it turns out that if there is a record-breaking hot day, he will stay close by his Drunken Housewife, following her from place to place, sprawling near her on the floor and looking like he'd been shot in the gut.

At night the heat did not break. The children had a rough night, finding their room too hot. Iris in particular was reminded that heat rises, as her top bunk bed was unbearable. I learned the next day that she negotiated with Lola that she get to sleep on Lola's cooler lower bunk, and Lola slept on the floor (which Lola cheerfully reported was cooler than her own bed). They were awake much of the night due to the heat.

Meanwhile I could have slept just fine with the heat, and the Sober Husband got an excellent night's sleep. My problem was with Frowst. Frowst, driven mad by the heat, kept coming upstairs, crying all the way, and then walking onto me, meowing sadly and standing directly on me. I gave up, unable to get back to sleep after he'd woken me up yet one more time, and I went downstairs to read sleeplessly. Once I was out of bed, Frowst's mental breakdown became even more maddening. The cat seemed to feel that if he could just find the right spot, he'd be comfortable, and he wanted a high level of service in finding that spot. I let him out the front door. I let him back in. I let him out the back door. I let him back in. I let him in and out of the front door several more times. He tried crying to be let into the garage, which frankly I thought was a winning idea given how dark and cool it is down there, but he soon cried to come back up. Eventually, in the wee hours, I got sleepy enough to go back to bed, rather than pass my time letting the cat in and out.

After I fell asleep again, the cycle began anew with Frowst crying and walking on me periodically. After a few times, I couldn't get back to sleep again, and I went back downstairs for some reading punctuated by opening doors for the cat. It seemed to me that his mind had been deranged by the heat. Meanwhile Henry passed the time by spreading out as much as possible on the floor, and poor, skeletal Al, our odd cat, loved the heat, purring happily.

I told the Sober Husband the night's sorry tale the next day. He was filled with self-congratulation. "I have so successfully trained these animals not to expect anything from me! It really pays off!" he crowed.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

it all truly began 11 years ago today

Eleven years ago today I became a Drunken Housewife (although I didn't have a drop of alcohol that day). Before that I was a drunken litigator. But back in 1999 on this day, our Iris uber Alles was born, and I began what was supposed to be a year off from work but which has turned into a never-ending life as a doting but lazy stay-at-home mother.

Happy birthday, Iris! May your reign of terror never end.

Monday, August 23, 2010

latest comment of the week and first comment of the month

Our latest Comment O'The Week winner is NonymousGoatsePants, for "You learn lots of interesting things eating meat! See what you're missing?" This former all purpose troll, now vegetarian-baiter has now won Comment O'The Week twice, making him the man to beat (carnivore to beat?) for Comment O'The Month.

Astute readers may have noticed that I don't exactly run the Comment O'The Week on a clockwork schedule. I get to it when I get to it, and the same will be true of Comment O'The Month. If anyone says something particularly witty before I go to Burning Man, that person will be the dark horse winner of Comment O'The Month. Otherwise, it will go to NonymousGoatsePants, and on my return from Burning Man, I'll send out a fabulous prize (unless the winner is too stalker-averse to give out a mailing address, which makes it a win-win for me as I won't have to wrap up and mail the fabulous prize, ha).

tyranny of the stove

It's been over three months since we had a working stove, and my decision to replace our broken piece o'crap with a high quality, double oven range has given us a lot of trouble. Today should be a busy, hectic day: we just got back from a week in the mountains at Camp Mather, and I want to go to Burning Man in just a few days. I should be driving to Home Depot and Bev Mo; I should be doing no end of errands related to Iris uber Alles's birthday tomorrow as well as Burning Man. Maybe I could even take my ankle to see a doctor (recovering from a very severe sprain which had me on crutches, I twisted my ankle again at Camp Mather when my bicycle skidded in some deep gravel, and then the day we came home, my ankle broke out in a burning rash. There is now a bright red rash speckled right over the visibly swollen outer part of my left ankle, so harmonically hurting on the inside and outside simultaneously). Instead I'm home while an electrician rewires our kitchen (to the tune of a thousand dollars --- one! thousand! dollars! just to be able to plug in a new gas range!).

This morning we also had the kitchen inspected; the place which sold us our European range won't run the risk of sending it to us without making sure we can get it into the kitchen. This hurdle was one which was hard to get over. Previously I spent an entire day at home waiting for this inspector, while Iris uber Alles bitched at me nonstop that she wanted to go to the aquarium, wanted to go to the aquarium, wanted to go to the aquarium. At the last minute the inspector called to inform us that he needed another four hour block of time, which conflicted with me picking up Lola at circus camp and taking her to some wretched other obligation, and so I refused to wait those extra four hours, leaving our kitchen woefully uninspected. A bitter Iris has subsequently complained for months since that dark day of infamy that "I had to spend a whole day at home when I was supposed to go to the aquarium", despite the fact that I took her to that same damn aquarium and out to lunch the very next day. Then there was the false alarm day where I thought the electrician was coming to give us a quote, and then the actual day where the electrician came and gave a quote. After that there was the day when I thought the electrician was coming to do the work, so I couldn't make plans, but I did leave the house in the afternoon after coming to the conclusion that any electrician who didn't call, email, or drop by before noon was most likely not rewiring my kitchen that day.

We had trouble rescheduling the inspection, and there was some fear that we wouldn't be able to get it done before the planned delivery of the range, which would mean extra delays. Aside from that, the Sober Husband was nervous about this inspection. Evidently our cabinets are about an inch lower than recommended over the range, and he was concerned that we'd be compelled by the appliance dictators to rip them out. Yesterday we tore out the little cabinet and countertop which will be used by the new, larger range, and the poor old Sober Husband looked nervously up at the overhead cabinets, no doubt imagining ripping those out with his prybar. In fear that our failure to get the rewiring done before the inspection would doom us, the Sober Husband made a sign bearing cryptic electric wiring instructions which he posted on the wall where the little cabinet used to be, to, as he explained, give the impression that we knew what we were doing and that when it was delivered, the range could get plugged in. In the event, the inspector didn't even measure the space between the cabinets and the range. He didn't ask about the wiring other than to look at me penetratingly (and given that he was cross-eyed, keeping eye contact was challenging) and, unblinkingly, inquire if my electrician would be done on time. "I'm sure," I said somewhat doubtfully. "They said it was an easy, fun job." (Is it good or bad if your contractor tells you your project " is a fun job"?)

The main issue the inspector had was measuring our doorways. I gather that a common San Francisco problem is that people buy stoves which they cannot wedge into their homes. Our doorways passed muster, though, and he didn't give a damn about those potentially troubling cabinets. "I'll see you on the thirtieth!" he said as a parting shot.

"Wait! I thought it was coming on the twenty-fourth!" I called after him. It's pencilled in on our calendar that I'm meant to spend the twenty-fourth at home waiting for the new range, which was supposed to be the worst case scenario delivery date for this damn range being shipped all the way from Bordeaux, but this fellow felt he would bring it by on the thirtieth, a day I planned to spend at Burning Man, not hanging around the house for yet another day of stove business. Sigh.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

man vs. food

We spent last week at rustic Camp Mather in the Sierras, and on our way home, we stopped at Shorty's in Escalon for a late lunch. This was an extravagance on my part, as for the first time I refused to take the bag lunches you can get from Camp Mather for the trip home to San Francisco. I always hate those sandwiches and have bad luck with the fruit and chips, always ending up with a banana and plain potato chips while the children refuse to trade for their barbecue flavored chips and tasty apples.

A group of middle aged male motorcyclists, two of them trailed by young sons, came in and sat near us. I admired their rides, which were all Harleys save for one Indian. One of these fellows regaled the others at top volume. He bragged of creating an event: "It's called 'Man Vs. Food.'" Evidently the participants are dared to eat certain extreme foods. The loudmouth's creation was "a burger, but you know how a burger has a bun? For the bottom part, I use a grilled cheese sandwich, and for the dome, I used a ham and cheese. And in between I have four patties. And roasted vegetables." Mayonnaise figured into this monster as well; Iris thought he said he used an entire pound of mayo on each of these things.

The fellow beamed all around, looking for admiration and awe. Not enough seemed to come, so he went on. A colleague of his created another sandwich for the Man vs. Food boondoggle. This other sandwich was modest in its proportions, but "he puts in a serrano chili, a habanero chili, and a ghost chili." Pause. "A serrano chili has about 50 more scovilles than a regular jalapano pepper, you know, scovilles is the measure of heat. A habanero has about 150 scovilles. The ghost pepper has over a million and a half scovilles! In India they use it to keep elephants away from their crops. They rub it on the fenceposts. He had to send away for it, and when it came, before he opened it, he put on gloves and took some plastic wrap. He put plastic wrap on his face and his arms and on everything the pepper might touch. Then he cut open the package. We put a whole one of those in the sandwich. We have to get them to sign a legal release before they can eat it." At this point his iPhone rang, and we settled our bill.

In the car, the Sober Husband asked me, "Do you believe in that ghost pepper thing?"

"I don't believe anything has over a million scovilles," I said. Back in the day, when fancy hot peppers were all the rage, I subscribed to "Chile Pepper" magazine and took up salsa making, even taking a pilgrimage to a particular restaurant in New Mexico owned by a salsa guru I admired.

"That guy was a loudmouth!" said Iris uber Alles.

Back at home I looked it up, and sad to say the loudmouth knows more about peppers than I do. There is such a thing as a ghost pepper, and at least once a laboratory rated this Indian pepper at just over one million scovilles, although it is more often considered to be nearer 800,000 scovilles. I find it depressing to be reminded of how out-of-date my knowledge is by a random braggart in the middle of nowhere.

Friday, August 13, 2010

the half eaten bag of tortilla chips and the low fat biscotti

Iris and I are in the throes of planning our trip to Burning Man. Burning Man used to be, if not my life, a large part of it. I went to the Man back when things were wild and loose, back when we used to not only take guns but even drive around shooting them off at things. I soon went from being a wide-eyed spectator to being the legal counsel and a member of the board, spending much of my time and effort in the unglamorous behind-the-scenes work (as I used to say, I took my passion and turned it into a crappy full-time job, replete with far too much office politics). Now Burning Man is very different, and I'm looking forward to seeing how the young people burn the Man these days.

But while we're looking forward, I can't help but remember how it was, and in particular, I recently had occasion to remember the curious incident of the half eaten bag of tortilla chips and the low fat biscotti.

The year was 1996, and my first husband and I were planning our trip to Burning Man. We invited a friend of ours and his housemate (who later wrote a big article published in a German newspaper about me and my huge transformation from downtown lawyer to arts festival femme fatale and very suspiciously refused to give me a copy after I shared that my husband could read German). My ex mentioned casually that he'd invited Lesley, a coworker of his whom I had learned to hate. He tried to make it out that this was my idea, but as I rebutted, I would sooner have sawed an arm off than invite Lesley on my vacation. When I'd first met my husband's colleagues from that job, I'd described Lesley as "the girl who doesn't have an affect", and my husband agreed. But then the affectless coworker tended to come up more and more, and then the next thing I knew I was no longer welcome to accompany him to the office on the weekends (both workaholics back then, we had at one time a policy that if we were going to spend weekends working in the office, we'd do it together). After I realized that when he was out of town he was calling Lesley and not me (and the excuse that they were coworkers went only so far, given that they were in different groups and given that the calls seemed, at least sometimes, to be about what bands were playing on the upcoming weekend), I gave him an ultimatum that he got more than enough of Lesley at work and she was no longer welcome to socialize with us out of the office. So, imagine my surprise to be told that I'd invited Lesley to go on our vacation to Burning Man! I quickly invited a close girlfriend to have a female ally close at hand.

At a get-together to plan the trip, my erstwhile husband and I, the only ones who'd been before, laid out our expectations. I was known for always cooking, but I spelled it out: "This is my vacation, so don't expect me to cook for you. You're all on your own." I slowly panned from face to face, fixing everyone with a strong glare to drill that point home. On our way home, my husband sweetly shared how cute it was that Lesley's list of things to bring consisted only of "things to set on fire." Aww!

When the time came to drive out to the desert, Lesley chose to sit behind my husband, who was driving, and whisper into his ear, the ear on the far side away from me. I couldn't hear what she was saying, but hours of having her murmur in his ear worked my last nerve. We made a pitstop in Sparks, Nevada, to get fresh produce at the last minute. My husband annoyingly chose to "keep an eye on the truck", rather than help me shop, and Lesley insisted she was all set and didn't need anything. Instead of going in to buy groceries, she leaned back on my Jeep, putting one foot up like she was starring in a soda commercial, and looked deep into my husband's eyes. I was angry, but I charitably assumed she must have enough food along. I took over the driver's seat to put an end to those whispered tetes-a-tete, and as I observed later, Lesley spent hours whispering into the driver's ear when it was my ex driving, but not one word was whispered during my hours of driving.

But then as mealtimes came and went, it slowly emerged that Lesley had brought no water, no booze, and no food other than an open, half eaten bag of tortilla chips and a bag of low fat biscotti. She hadn't brought anything to share, other than those stupid biscotti. Oddly the one thing she had brought along was a copy of the Berkeley phone book, which at one point she carried off into the desert, later returning without it. Although I wondered what the hell she'd done with the phone book, I didn't ask. I was too filled with rage.

At every mealtime, I would cook a fabulous meal, assisted by my friend, and the two of us would eat it (my friend carrying on, for Lesley's benefit, in a loud voice about how great the food was). Lesley would stare at me, begging in body language for table scraps, but I wouldn't offer her food, and she didn't ask for it. My ex would pace around eating, angry at me for not feeding the obviously hungry Lesley, and refused to sit down with my friend and I to eat a civilized meal. With Lesley begging like a dog for food with her eyes and my husband fuming over my inhospitality towards her, the tension was high at our camp. Our friend Mark and his housemate brought a variety of dried camping food, and they gave Lesley their scraps at each meal after they had eaten their fill. I often ranted about how dare she come with nothing but half a bag of tortilla chips and some biscotti, we stopped at a grocery store for God's sake, and the lazy $*@&! stood in the parking lot hitting on my husband while I bought food she expected me to cook for her.

Lesley came to life at other times, though. She was separated from our group as we were exploring one night, and when she found us, she ran up and grabbed my husband's ass... right in front of me. I was livid. My friend was shocked and kept saying over and over again, "I can't believe she did that! She grabbed him!" Lesley looked at me for my reaction. My ex later completely denied it. "Oh, she was just reaching for something in my pocket."

Tension built. I went for a walk with my husband and informed him that he was free to sleep with Lesley, and then I would file for a divorce the day we got back. He freaked out at the mention of divorce and instantly changed his attitude. For the rest of Burning Man, he stayed by my side, and we had a wonderful time together. Lesley's spirits visibly sunk, and she slunk around gloomily for the rest of the trip. I felt as though I had squashed her like a bug, and, magnanimous in my triumph, I gave her some of the pasta puttanesca I made.

My ex and I were happy, so very happy then. We ran about hand-in-hand, seeing everything there was to see. I have a picture of myself taken then with my friend Mark, which appeared in a coffeetable book about Burning Man, and I'm clearly in my element, proud and confident and beautiful and happy, savoring my victory over the forces of evil and low fat biscotti.

[Four months later I filed for a divorce, and my husband and Lesley went public with their relationship (although he always did claim that nothing happened before our divorce and that "Lesley would be very shocked if she were to hear that you thought she'd ever done anything inappropriate")].

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Limpy, Gimpy, and Cabin Fever

From the moment the crutches came into the house, Iris fell in love with them. Sure, Iris was completely able-bodied, and yes, they were meant for her mother with the nasty sprain, but that wouldn't keep Iris from continually hijacking them.

We arrived at a crabby compromise that she could have one and I would have one, and she was forbidden to take mine and adjust it to her own height. I wanted the freedom to gimp around on my one crutch whenever I felt like it.

Looking at Iris getting around the house with her crutch, I said, "We should be called 'Gimpy' and 'Limpy.' I'm Gimpy. No, wait, you can be 'Gimpy.'"

"And I'm 'Cabin Fever!'" shouted Lola.

So Gimpy, Limpy, and Cabin Fever have been getting through a dull part of summer vacation, with our usual routine upset by my temporary status as a crippled person. Gimpy and Cabin Fever need to help out more than normal, and I complain more than normal (my ankle really hurts a lot).

Yesterday I, Limpy, decided to try getting around without my crutch. I can now walk slowly and painfully without it. Gimpy used this chance to claim the other crutch and has been enthusiastically getting around on crutches. Going downstairs last night on crutches, Gimpy fell and bruised all the toes on one foot. This brought forth hours of complaint and a renewed commitment to using those crutches at all times.

Friday, August 06, 2010

comment of the week

This was not posted on my blog, but rather on another blog, about me.
need to slap a woman (I'm a skinny woman..who's never slapped anyone..or anything..)..but my GAWD ..the very TITLE of her blog..offends the not easily offended (ME...freedom of speech..sarcastic as the point where've I've hurt many people with my caustic tongue) Carole takes the cake. - Halsey
Ol' Halsey thinks she's "sarcastic as hell", possessed of a "caustic tongue", and a firm supporter of freedom of speech, but the very title of this blog offends her into frothing, foaming ellipses. Congrats, Halsey, that's the Comment O' The Week!

the fall

Tuesday morning I had an optometrist appointment, and it took considerable effort to get the children up and fed and ready to leave for the day (I planned to take them out to lunch after my appointment and then to their afternoon art camp). I had the brainwave of donating a little artist's model of a cat to Becky, the children's art teacher, to use in her many classes devoted to drawing cute animals (Becky, who knows how to appeal to a small child, sometimes teaches a course called "Drawing Cute Animals" and sometimes one called "Fashion Girls And Their Pets"). We never use this model, and the Sober Husband and I want to declutter our house. Giving it to Becky made a lot of sense to me. I pitched this idea to the children, explaining that they could use the model at Becky's classes and how happy she would be to get it.

As we went out the door, Lola stopped dead in her tracks in front of me, clutching the wooden cat model. "I want to keep Kitty at home," she said in a voice which promised a full onslaught of fussiness. I nearly ran into Lola and tried to step around her. My foot landed on the edge of a thick coir mat by the front door, my ankle buckled, and I went down. Although I fell full length on the hard tiles on the top of the steps, I wasn't aware of any pain anywhere other than in my ankle, which hurt so much that I lost my vision briefly. After I could see again, I uttered some obscenities. Lola shouted, "MOMMY MOMMY MOMMY" in a frightened voice over and over again. "I'm okay, Lola," I said, trying to get her to calm down. "Mommy's okay."

I lay there for some time (I was vaguely aware that the day laborers used by my next door neighbor's contractor were unwillingly approaching, drawn by a sense of duty and Lola's hysteria) and then I asked Iris to help me to my feet. My ankle hurt a lot, but I could put some weight on it, and I could rotate my foot. "It's just a sprain," I told the girls. "I can put weight on it, so that means nothing's broken." I decided to keep going. "This isn't my driving foot, thank God," I said. We drove to the Stonestown mall, where I slowly limped to the optometrist and to the Chevy's, which the children adore. My ankle hurt more and more. I limped back to the car by putting an arm around Iris and leaning on her.

At this point, I decided I couldn't take the girls to the playground or their art class. I needed to get off my foot. We went home (where I discovered that I'd never locked the door after my big fall) and called the Sober Husband, who came home a couple of hours later. He drove the girls to their class, which was half over for the day, but some art is better than none. I elevated my foot and read "Sworn to Silence" by Linda Castillo. By night time, my ankle was much worse. Getting me to the bathroom was a major ordeal. Hopping on one foot seemed the way to go, but the reverberations were agonizing. We ended up bringing an old rolling chair downstairs to use as a sort of wheelchair.

I slept on the couch intermittently, my ankle hurting a lot. In the morning I felt panicky. Just touching the bottom of my foot was agonizing beyond belief. I turned into a drama queen, insisting that I needed to see a doctor, this was obviously worse than a sprain, but I couldn't imagine how I could get there without crutches. The Sober Husband called a medical supply store, which wasn't open yet. "Call Walgreen's," I said. Then his cellphone rang. The medical supply store owner was calling back. The Sober Husband arranged to meet him shortly to buy crutches. He reported incredulously to me, "The store doesn't open for hours, and the message says that, but the guy calls you back if you leave a hang up call to see what you want."

The crutches didn't make me feel much more mobile. The sidewalk is so sleeply canted where we live, on the side of a very steep hill, and the differential in height between the two crutches made me feel panicky. We got me to the doctor's office, where it was soon determined that I just have a severe sprain, although the doctor cautioned that "sprains like this take four to six weeks to heal." I felt like an idiot for having gone to the doctor at all and for having been dramatic at home that morning. The doctor gave me some tips on how to use crutches better and suggested I try just one. After some coaching, I more confidently crutched back out to the waiting room to be taken back home.

At home Iris fell in love with my crutches. She kept confiscating them and adjusting them for her own height, limping around the house on them. Finally I lost my temper a bit. "I am the crippled person here, and I need at least one crutch set for my height." I managed to get one back from her, but all night long she meticulously limped and used the other crutch. Around midnight she finally decided to go up to bed. "So you're all better now?" I asked. She paused. "Yes, but I'll be sick again tomorrow and need the crutch."

Three days after the injury, I'm still in a lot of pain. I feel like I'm living in a bad slapstick comedy, where my clumsy, painfilled locomotion must be hilarious to the onlooker. The Sober Husband's vicious green parrot is trying to take advantage of my weakness, and crutching past her cage is dangerous. The children are quite squabbly, despite my attempts to declare the living room "A Place Of Calm And Healing." I haven't been upstairs since Tuesday morning, and despite my continual requests, no one has cleaned the litterboxes since then, either. No laundry is occurring. On the bright side, my feral kittens really love having me sleep on the couch, and I had a breakthrough with the shyer, black-and-white one. I am going to share with my feral kitten rescue my accidental discovery that sleeping in the same room as a hitherto despaired-of feral kitten can have powerful taming effects.

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Squirrels and pigeons

This is Iris guest blogging.

I call myself the squirrel/pigeon whisperer. Because that is what I am. In GG park, there is a really big playground. And in that playground, there is a squirrel. I named him Squabble. I visit him every time we go to the playground there, which is often. He is very friendly with me. One time he walked up to me and stared at my foot. I was kind of freaked out because I thought he would bite me, but I didn't run away. Then he sniffed my foot. Then he walked away. But he is pretty freaked out by everyone else, especially Lucy, who has tried to become friends with him as well.
At the playground there also lots of pigeons. They are also friends with me. Particularly 6 who I have even named.

Raymond (a chumum)
Gaymond (also a chumum)
Tauro (because he has black and white spots,)
Henrietta (because she looks like a chicken)
Clementine (because she's orange like the character in those books)
Gimpy (because he has a broken leg and can fly very well,).

One time I was feeding pigeons while Lucy was playing and I was sitting with Momdude. And they all loved the food. Then I saw gimpy and felt bad for him because he couldn't run over to the food like the other ones, and I threw some food at him. And then he caught it in the air!!! It was awesome. Then a couple days later Momdude was sitting on a bench throwing pretzels at the birds and they all just stared at the pretzels, not even realizing they were food. Then I took the same pretzels and tried feeding them, and they went crazy over the food. This is not a coincidence! They know me, and now that I would not throw stuff at them unless it was food.
Then yesterday we were walking back to the car from the playground and I had some extra food and I saw a squirrel and some birds looking for food so I threw some at them, then they went crazy an started flying at me and before I knew it there was a herd of birds running after me on the ground.


Tuesday, August 03, 2010

no child of mine

Part I:

I was flipping through the radio channels as I drove the children to their art class, and I landed on "Once In A Lifetime" by the Talking Heads. I turned it up and sang along, and Iris joined in. "This is not my beautiful house!" When we got where we were going, I kept the radio on until the song was over.

"I don't like that song," said critical Lola.

"Lola! I will disown you. You are no child of mine," I said. In the 80's, the Talking Heads were my favorite band, to the point where people were always telling me that if "Burning Down the House" came on the radio, they suddenly had the urge to call me.

Lola leaned forward and put her arms around me. "I am always your child."

"I can't believe you don't like that song, though. You are required to like that song!"

Part II:

Iris's school supply list included a scientific calculator. This was a meaningful moment for the Sober Husband, a man who can remember every calculator he has ever owned. Instead of buying Iris "the inferior brands on the list, those Texas Instruments really aren't any good", he presented Iris with a scientific calculator he owned himself. He presented it to her reverentially and started extolling its virtues. "You'll want to play around with this," he said.

Iris cut him off. "Yeah, yeah," she said, putting it down on the coffeetable without even glancing at it.

The Sober Husband was aghast. "I can't believe you don't want to try it out! You are not my child!"