My sister sends me a text message that says, “Hey can you print out all of your Future Toms and give them to Dad at dinner tomorrow?”
Some kind of facial expression, too, with the punctuation marks. I’m trying to cut down on those – they give me the creeps.
So I pull my car over to a safe place, watching out for children and in no hurry at all, and I get out and put my keys in my pocket, so as to be in total compliance with the law, and then I text back something like, what the hell are you talking about?
Not abbreviating anything, there’s no reason to be in a rush. Think it through, texting’s a big deal.
So whatever my sister’s up to, she’s right there on the spot with the return text. Something about something I must have said sometime, something that I was going to do, some kind of location I was going to arrive at, some other day. Literally, no idea what she’s talking about.
Dad doesn’t have email or internet, is the problem. He’s just heard about Future Tom, wants to read it, doesn’t want to get the internet.
The problem is, I don’t have printer ink. I don’t print anything pretty much ever, but Marilyn does, and it seems like she’s been walking around a lot the last few days, growling about printer ink. Something about, we’re out of it, she wishes we weren’t out of it. There’s an inconvenience involved. Something cryptic and female like that. Who knows what she was talking about?
So whatever it is I said I’d do at whatever location, I need to get to an Office Max first, and get them to figure out what kind of printer ink I need. Then I have to get home and give it to the tall daughter, and tell her what’s going on, and then once she gets everything printed out, go to whatever location, for whatever the hell this is all about.
So I’m already thinking, listen, you know I wrote the things, right. I’m still writing them – and it takes a while sometimes. You’re telling me, we don’t have anyone else hanging around, not writing stuff, who can print it out, drive it across town?
But you have to watch out for my sister. Sometimes, you’re just saying, screw that. And she thinks you’re saying, screw you. All I’m thinking is, no, I’m probably not going to Office Max or probably even whatever that was you were texting me about there. But I will agree to start over in just a little bit here, like a day or two, and figure out some kind of Red Lobster trip – next week, I imagine – and eventually, definitely get the stuff printed out, and over to Dad.
But by no means should anyone expect me anywhere with anything printed out, tomorrow. That’s just the reality of our situation here, and I don’t make the rules.
None of that having anything, as far as I’m concerned, to do with my sister. Except maybe just a tiny little smidge of, listen man, it seems like I just spent sixty-five or seventy hours writing the stuff, let me just get you a chair while I print ‘em out and drive ‘em out to Dad.
Just a smidge of that, I’m telling you. A sprinkle. I’m pretty sure she can handle just a little sprinkle of that.
Anyway, my sister is a dark and mean-spirited person, who has a lot of enemies, so I thought that if I picked on her, I would draw a big crowd, and I have a scam that I want to report to my fellow citizens, another scam I fell for this weekend which I will call the Rototiller Okeedoke.
I began the day literally jogging three and a half miles for the Race For The Cure, and then got home and Marilyn said, “Hey, do you think you could do me a huge favor?”
You know, not trying to blow my horn there about the 5K run or anything, just pointing out, that’s a weird time to ask someone for a “huge favor.”
All the while, Marilyn’s doing that hand-wringing, square grin, knee-bobbing thing, like, oh man, I hope you’re cool enough to do this one favor cause I’m so screwed if you don’t. A perfect mix of hope and hostility – don’t think I don’t know a threat when I see one.
Good lord, What?
She wants me to drive up to my mom’s, an hour away, load up a rototiller into the CRV, then drive it back home, till the garden, then clean it, and load it up, and drive it back up to my mom’s. That’s the huge favor. Kind of hard to believe, you’re probably thinking.
That’s certainly what I’m thinking, cause, that’s a pretty huge favor. Not going to bang this drum forever, but I did just run in the flipping Race For The Cure, like an hour ago.
I’m not answering, but I’m not playing poker, either. Sounds like not just a huge favor, but a series of five or six huge favors, chained together and making a lot of noise. That sounds like maybe the wost post 5K run idea I’ve ever heard in my life.
Marilyn is able to detect this perspective of mine, and she experiences Lord-of-the-Rings-style despair. All is lost now, but she understands. Well, I’ll just go make dolls out of lawn clippings, sing to myself while the world burns.
For crying out loud. Are you serious? That’s about five hours of work, you’re just kind of springing on me here. That’s absolutely necessary, is it?
Well, we could rent one. It’d be like sixty bucks.
Oh, holy crap, that’s the move right there. We have to rent that rototiller.
And that’s it, I’m just suddenly begging to go out and rent a rototiller, and then till the garden, and then clean it and take it back. Just two and a half hours work – a steal!
Probably old news to most of you out there, like the old Nigerian money order scam, but just in case it’s not, you want to watch out for the Rototiller Okeedoke.