Back in June I wrote Raise high the roofbeam, carpenters. It was about some short stories that were actually true and I thought should be retold. Here are some more.
Remote Control Danger
“And when my parents gave me to you …” I actually told my grandmother that once. It happened after I’d seen this news report on a child who’d been given by his parents to his grandparents since his folks were fuckos. Not that I don’t love my parents, but Taffy and I are the same age. We’re only 57 years apart. Anyway, on the ride home from Taffy’s warehouse, she’d let me play with the remote control garage door opener. As we drove through Cleveland, I’d merrily press the button and pretend to talk to the Batcave about how the Joker was following us. Flash forward twenty years or so. Taff calls me to tell me she saw a commercial where this baby was pressing the garage door opener button and crashing it up and down on a car. After a heartbeat I started laughing. We both wondered how many garage doors I might have accidentally opened.
Digging to China
I was a trouble causing child. This should come as no surprise. While in elementary school in Cleveland, I caused some of the most irritation to my parents ever. Part of this maybe was because I was being raised by my mother most of the time, while Dad was in Israel, but that would be an excuse. The truth of the matter is that I, like many children, had no concept of ‘the big picture.’ Not like we’re supposed to. Anyway, this story is the one that Mom later said was the moment she knew it was all over. I was about four, and one day my school called up Mom, telling her that parents were complaining about their children coming home dirty. Naturally Mom asked why this was her fault (though I too had been coming home filthy, this was pretty normal). The school explained that the kids all said it was my fault. So in goes Mom to the principal’s office, dragging me along. They asked me if I knew why all the kids were so dirty and I said yes. We were digging to China. After a long moment, they laughed and explained I couldn’t dig to China. Thinking that settled the matter, they let us go. A couple days later, however, there we all were, digging again, and I was hauled in once more. Mom came and again with the questions. “Now, we said you couldn’t dig to China.” “Oh, I’m not digging to China.” “You’re not?” “No, I’m digging to Australia.”
Jesus Bitch Slapped my Granny
This is a true story. My in-laws are rednecks. No, really. Ipstenit’s gran lives in a trailer, and it’s actually HER grandmother who was bitch-slapped, not any of mine. Anyway. We drive down to Mississippi so I can meet the clan. I have the flu and I’m feeling like crap, but I’m all for it. On Sunday, we get to her gran’s house, trailer, and how are you, ma’am, nice to meet you. I’m very quiet because I’ve been warned this is a no-booze, no-swearing home. I don’t drink that much, but I like to say fuck and hell a lot. So naturally I shut up. I’m from Ohio, and I have enough common sense to know that you don’t piss people off who have gun racks mounted on their bicycles. No, they didn’t. Anyway, Sunday is Sunday, and I meet everyone, play with the kids (the baby liked me a lot) and as we’re talking, Ipstenit’s Gran gets this look on her face. I get a look from the Mrs. that tells me ‘This woman’s about to tell us why we, nice, respectable, Jews, should come back to Jesus.’ Never mind that I’ve never BEEN to Jesus, nor do I have any desire to go there. As Granny-In-Law opens her mouth, the funniest thing ever happens. There’s this picture of Jesus on the wall, a crappy fake wood with an ‘ancient’ image glued onto it, hanging off the same wire and nail it’s been on for about 30 years. The wire? Snaps. The picture lands on the chair behind Granny-In-Law’s head, bounces off the chair and whacks her in the back of the head. Wham. I thought I was going to die from not laughing.