Monthly Archives: February 2020

My Dad is a Seenager

My Dad: The Senior Teenager

My dad recently announced that he is officially a seenager. A what? This sounds to me like he’s aged into being senile, but, at this point, I’m not going to talk him out of that. Clarifying, he explained he’s now a senior teenager. When I realized what that was, I suddenly have life goals! Basically, he has everything he ever wanted as a teenager only 70 years later. Everything he wanted without any of the hazards!

As a seenager, he doesn’t have to go to school or work and sleeps as late as he wants every day. He takes naps if he wants because, if he feels like it, he can stay up all night watching Netflix. (He doesn’t. He still doesn’t last much past 9pm, if we’re honest).

He’s got his own place where he makes all the rules and no curfew, plus a monthly allowance! My dad still has his driver’s license and his own car. (Yes, it’s a 2009 Camry with 40k original miles and a cassette player, but he still listens to cassettes, so it’s okay.) That driver’s license also gets him into bars and the liquor store. He doesn’t even have to sneak! It’s great.

Seenagers wear whatever they want as they are past needing to impress anyone. Things like shoelaces and belts become a point of pride more than fashion. How many at that age are relegated to Velcro and elastic waistbands? Dad can grow whatever hair he has left down to his butt crack and absolutely no one is going to tell him he can’t. (Don’t do it, Dad.)

I don’t really worry about him running around with a bad crowd of other seenagers. Or walking around with a bad crowd, I don’t think any of them would run even if they were being chased. From what I can tell, the people he hangs out with aren’t going to turn up pregnant, cook meth or fail English 4. Nobody’s getting drafted, enlisting, or worried about college applications. They can all go to R-rated movies together and pay half-price for the matinees. It’s a great group of “kids.”

And at the end of the day, those seenagers aren’t scared of anything. They’ve already faced down the really scary things life can dish out, so why be scared? And, hey, they don’t have acne. So, you go, Dad!

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Filed under Much Ado About Nothing

Phil, Protests & Winter Woes

Photo courtesy of Punxsutawney Phil’s Facebook page. Because, of course, he has a Facebook page.

For the past 133 years, the residents of Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania have, without fail, every February 2nd, hauled out a chubby groundhog name Punxsutawney Phil to predict the end of winter. This year, right on schedule, here comes Phil, likely wearing his Pat Mahomes Kansas City Chief’s jersey, to check on the existence of his shadow and announce the prospects for spring. Since 1887, it’s really been a lot of fun and games … until the protestors get involved. Enter PETA.

PETA stands for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. (It does not stand for People Eating Tasty Animals. That’s a completely different group that likely hosts outstanding barbecues for members.) PETA is the world’s largest animal rights group with gaboons of members who actually do good things to keep lipstick off pigs and monkeys out of labs. This year, though, they took notice of Phil and clamored to have him replaced by artificial intelligence – a rodent robot.

To be clear, it’s not okay to replace humans at McDonald’s with kiosk computers, but it’s okay to rob this defenseless creature of his identity as a beloved weather icon deserving of his own nationally recognized holiday and replace him with a machine. Maybe he can get a job at McDonald’s.

The PETA people argue that a robot would provide a more accurate prediction. This year as he was proudly held high above the cheering crowds, Phil did not see his shadow and proclaimed the arrival of an early spring. So, you know what, I’m Team Groundhog all the way! I honestly would rather have a nocturnal, burrowing woodchuck tell me those sweet lies that I want to hear over some National Weather Service computer droid explaining why the jet stream, global warming and the El Nino doom me to winter that will last until early May.

Sadly, no sooner had Phil prognosticated (that’s today’s word to Google!) hope of spring and driven off with Bill Murray but it started snowing. Everywhere. The Texas panhandle was at a standstill while even San Antonio froze their fajitas. The Midwest got buried and Michigan has officially been annexed into the Arctic Circle. Which, I’m not going to lie, makes me want to strangle Phil. Fortunately for him, my hands are too frozen to actually follow through with that.

Spring is March 19th for those keeping score.

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Filed under From the Snow Drift