I could blog about the Super Bowl, but ESPN has at least 50 people writing about it right now. The commercials are being covered also. So I decided to type a few words about the biggest thing in my life, my son. At the time of me typing this, we are (probably) 48 hours away from having the heir to my Coen name. Sorry, buddy. At least you aren’t being born under another stupid Pats championship.
The first pregnancy for my wife was in the summer – hot, with swollen feet and we didn’t know nothing for nothing no how. I even took a breastfeeding class (I sat in, taking notes aka drawing pictures of boobs) to support my wife. Number two, not so bad…for me. I felt OK, you know? (Any guy that says “we” are pregnant should be kicked in the ass). My wife had horrendous acid reflux where she was either dehydrated or choking back stomach acid puke the whole time. Her back is shot – I have to use a massager on her almost every night. Oh and there’s a little girl that still asks for momma no matter what she feels like even as croop somehow ran up the chain to her a couple weeks ago. It’s a coughy, snot-filled mess in here.
So, through all this, my wife has made it to the finish line. At 6 months, she was putting in tile to finish our house project on the old house to sell it, on her hands and knees. We sold my condo and her house, plus moved into a new house and bought a new car since she’s been pregnant. Her father also passed away suddenly early on in the pregnancy, which was just crushing. Being a mom meant there really wasn’t a chance to slow down or grieve. Despite all this, she has persevered. I am in awe of the capacity of women to have children, but my wife deserves a purple heart, especially if he’s anywhere close to our 9 lb., 3 oz. first child. Luckily, he’s a boy, so I think I am supposed to let him be raised by wolves for the first six months. Does anyone know where there are any wolves? Damn urbanization.
I don’t know if I’ve ever told this story, but here goes. I went through confirmation as a middle schooler – for you unwashed heathens, that’s where the church makes sure you’re ready to step up from childhood to adulthood and deepen your understanding of the Christian faith. Now you know, before you burst into flames.
I was there very early one day and our pastor’s assistant was there. He was a few years older and insanely smart. I think he missed a perfect score on his SAT’s by one question. He was very straight laced, almost robotic, and his family was similarly built. His mom and younger brother were there, across the table. Younger bro: “Mother, it appears I have misplaced my pen. May I borrow another?” His mom was crestfallen. “I am very disappointed in you. I gave you that pen and trusted you would be responsible. Your brother has his pen. You should behave more like your brother.” Younger: “I’m sorry mother.” Before the sad music started playing, older brother stepped up. “It’s OK, mother. I have brought an extra pen and he may have mine.” He pulled another pen from his planner and held it out like a golden ray of sunshine burst from heaven as a chorus of seraphim erupted in hallelujahs. You would have thought he gave him a kidney. There was much ballyhooing and gushing and the whole scene was so humorous to me, I shook with laughter that I kept bottled inside. My friend Aaron was next to me doing the same thing.
Later, during the most serious moment of our important religious journey, my pastor asked this room to close our eyes. He then built a very tranquil scene where we were walking down a road. Jesus appeared next to us and walked with us, silently, for a while. Our pastor then said, “What would you ask Jesus?” Deep, contemplative thought almost hummed like beehive in our meeting room as the most serious and important inquiries filled the heads of each young adult. I leaned over to Aaron and whispered, “Hey Jesus, can I borrow your pen?” He began to shudder with his entire body and little explosions of laughter erupted. I caught the bug and immediately began fake cough laughing as tears streamed down my face. I shot a quick eye over to my pastor and the stare was so intense, I think he burned the side of my head.
I think if he wasn’t a religious man, he would have strangled me to death right there, but he probably knows I was damned for ruining the moment. I like to think the comedic gem is at least tolerated, if not flat out appreciated, so I may get a pass. Either way, I passed the confirmation process, maybe just to get me out of there so I didn’t ruin it for the next batch.
Well, the crisis of the day yesterday was Chief Wahoo, the red faced 1940’s throwback mascot/logo of Cleveland Indians was announced retired, sort of. This year, business as usual, but in 2019, heeeeeeeee’s OUT! (A little baseball joke, get it? I hate myself.)
“What do you think about it, Chris?” yells absolutely no one. Well, I’ll tell you. Absolutely nothing changes for the Indians. They still have the same team, same colors, same payroll, same stadium and a logo that some Native Americans felt was racist (and some white people who act like they’re full blooded Native Americans, oh boy are there a lot of those) is gone. Side note: If a white person glows in the dark and tells you they are Cherokee when their whole life and ancestry is from Ohio, they’re probably lying. Sorry Elizabeth Warren, I don’t really buy it. You sunburn when a lamp is turned on. In all seriousness, the logo was very 1940’s-ish exaggerated features and since the Indians are red also, very pronounced red. It should have phased out a while ago and no, the Indians weren’t named for Louis Sockalexis. He played three years for them and barely saw the field. I know, I heard the story also.
I do however draw the line at changing at the name. This is the part of PC culture I don’t get. No one goes to root for a team and mock the mascot at the same time. Well, except me. I’m a Steelers fan and this is their mascot.
Yep, just a big ol’ yellow guy walking around with steel beams, just like all steel workers. I remember when my dad used to come home from the mill and watch TV sitting on a pile of steel beams, relaxing after a hard day. Back to my original point though, I think it’s great we have teams that honor Native Americans by name. The US has named several battleships and aircraft after fierce warriors and there are plenty to choose from. Tecumseh and Pontiac united many tribes under a common cause, Crazy Horse was present at the three biggest victories over the US Army in the western battles, and countless others, from Kintpuash to Osceola to even the perseverance of Chief Joseph are stories of resistance known to most historians.
So in recap, less people are offended by something that was legitimately offensive to most (if you don’t believe, use the internets) and nothing changes with the team. If you think the name needs to go, you need to smoke a bowl or take some angry pills and use your brain instead your overreacting anger reflex. No matter what, though, we should all unite behind the Steelers getting rid of Steely McBeam, whatever your views on the Indians. That mascot sucks.
Last week I saw a clickbait story about a Domino’s that saved a customer’s life. I’m sadly likely to read a lot of those stories, so I clicked. A Domino’s customer in Oregon ordered every single day for years, then just stopped ordering. The store tried calling, then after 11 days, sent someone over. The TV was on, but no one answered – they called the cops and the guy had a stroke, but was still alive. It saved his life. Nice story, over and above service…then the internet took over and ruined my limited faith in humanity.
“Why didn’t they check sooner?” one lady typed. Hm, I don’t know dummy. Do you track each and every one of your customers? How many haven’t ordered for 2 or more days? Don’t know? MURDERER!!! Also, ever heard of vacation? Do you share your vaca plans with your local pizza shop? Nope, sure don’t. Not unless you’re a lonely, lonely sap.
“It was probably the pizza that killed him.” Probably a comment from someone who drinks every night or smokes 4 packs a day. Yes, pizza kills every day. That’s why it’s regulated by the FDA. Oh, it’s not. You’re an ass.
Then of course, I saw a “work from home” post, which has that ever worked? Someone dives into the morass of comment world, then clicks on a repeating comment for their career choice? “Where’d you get your job?” “Well, I was about to shit on Domino’s for saving a guy because they should be delivering kale chips, sure they’d go out of business, but then the darnedest thing – I got a job selling timeshares working from home!” Actually, that would make sense. Probably did go down like that.
In summation, if you chose to crap all over a restaurant that single-handedly saved a customer’s life, I hope you order all your meals from internet commenters like yourself. When you have a stroke and lie dying on your floor, alone, the best you can hope for is for someone to come over and mock your food decisions and leave an unwarranted yelp review of your living room. Then I’ll comment how they should have done it sooner.
This past weekend the Coen family, which is about to bump up to four (no, I don’t count the pets like some weirdo), got a new ride. It was great, my wife is taking over the new one, I’m taking over hers, but the downside is I had to get rid of the Malibu. After just shy of 220,600 miles and 9.5 years, my Buchepalus is off to Vahalla.
I did some math, if I drove on average 30 miles per hour, I would have spent over 306 days in that car. I probably ate $5000 worth of Taco Bell and cursed out 745 strangers who drove poorly. Ah, memories. There is something about a vehicle that has pleasant memories associated with it. Even my worst car, when I had a to buy my no-longer-driving Grandpa’s 1993 (I typed 1883 at first and that’s probably almost as accurate) Grand Marquis, still had some good times, like when I hydroplaned in the rain into a guard rail and still drove 3 hours to get to a wedding. Actually that car sucked ass, forget that one.
My Malibu was my first purchased car on my own. I signed a horrible deal because I was working at a place that gave me a very generous car allowance, but I loved it. Suede and leather interior, heated seats (I never used them, I’m always hot), XM radio, and even the basic new car smell (I took care of that quickly, see the Taco Bell reference earlier). That car took me across the US when I started doing comedy on the road. I went to the eastern side of Maryland, southern Georgia, Minnesota, across the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and down to Birmingham, Alabama.
When they appraised it sight unseen, I was told $500 bucks. When I got it and came back, it dropped to $250. Apparently, a broken headlight, door locks not working, multiple accidents (I was plowed into while parked on High Street and rear ended), and the rear defrost being out will do that. When we signed the papers, it hit me that the car was gone. Sure, I could private sell, but with a baby on the way, the thought of meeting strangers to ask to test drive it sounded about as fun as covering myself in honey and jumping into a fire ant colony. They asked for my keys and I had to pull almost a decade’s worth of crap out of it.
I had my college rush guide, a “Certified Bad Ass” card I got when I turned 13 as a gag, a tool kit I never remembered having in there, a broken guitar and busted laptop, an old CD case (I think I left a CD in it, dammit) and comedy headshots that had water stains on them. It was like a homeless person was using my car to hoard trash. Still, it was a bit overwhelming, since giving up that car made me think of my dog Stringbean again and all the memories of road trips past. I like to think someone in need can buy that car for cheap and they get some good miles out of it…or someone buys it and runs over Tom Brady. You know, something useful. I patted the old hoss one last time and then realized I’ll be driving a Jeep Patriot now, so at least I have the most appropriately named car I could get. Unless they come out with the Chevy Grizzled Asshole or the Jeep Surly. Goodbye, old pal, drive straight and true and right into Tom Brady’s knees for your buddy.
My daughter shuffled over to my wife this weekend, when she was having a pretzel. “I have pretzel?” “Of course, here you go.” She smiled as her mother gave her the only pretzel in her hand. My daughter then shuffled over to me and handed it out. “Dada have pretzel!”
This is all I saw at that moment as I laughed uncontrollably. Then I remembered the time she poked me in the eye so hard I yelled out in pain and she began crying. My wife came around the corner, “What did you do to her?” as water poured from my eye. The game is strong in this one. If only I can teach her zero morals, we have the makings of a fine Congresswoman, lawyer or the person who tells fast food employees to never give out drink carriers someday.