Smile Politely

Summertime means big men and little pools

I like this sort of weather. Strangely, I have been saying this for almost an entire year so far. Is it possible that we now live in a place where it’s nice all the damned time? Probably not. I’m the kind of person who is always waiting for the other shoe to fall and the anticipation is killing me. I’m betting on some big assed tornadoes over the summer and then there’s always a long shot of an earthquake or possibly a plague. Even if none of these things happen, it’s still a little hard for me to enjoy the entrée when I believe dessert could possibly be a tartlet full of poop. I’ll only be able to relax about it once I give up all hope, which should happen any second now. Either way, let’s get it on.


It never really seems like Summer has started around here until the students leave. I’m fine when the students are here, but I must admit it’s a nice little summer respite when they get the hell out of Dodge. At least I don’t have to treat Campustown like that Cathedral place with all the bloodthirsty cubs in Logan’s Run. When the students are here and I realize I’m about to accidentally drive on campus, I find the best plan for me is to just dive out of the moving car and begin to run back to the civilization of downtown. This time of year it’s actually sort of nice to drive through there.

So, now that I’ve officially declared that my Summer is beginning there is a lot of work to do to get ready. A better man would have started these chores by now, but I’ve decided to find these delays charming. The first thing I need to do is get my bicycle up and running. It’s pretty tip-top, but I think it may have a flat tire and possibly no brakes. I should probably get a helmet, too, but I’m not really all that juiced about having an open casket, so I think I’ll continue to rely on whatever protection I can manage from a baseball cap.

For some reason, every summer I feel obligated to go to the store to pick up a few Whiffle balls and bats. In all honesty, I can’t remember a time in the last five years where we’ve actually played Whiffle Ball, but those sorts of things are nice to have on hand. Most of the time we end up using the bats to whack each other in the testicles and that’s good enough for me. A rousing game of “bag tag” causes me to sweat far less than an actual sport, even if that actual sport is Whiffle Ball.

Every year I contemplate buying a big assed kiddie pool for the back yard. I pretend it’s for the dogs, but deep inside I know my drunk, dumb ass will eventually be in there with them. I even considered getting the little pool and then getting a raft to float atop while I’m in the tiny pool. This could be a wonderful kind of redneck hammock and it will make the news of my unfortunate near drowning that much more hilarious. I should probably just get a chair and sit quietly.

One of the things I’ve already taken care of is getting one of those big silver tubs to ice down beer in when people come over. It seems just way too normal to have a cooler or a refrigerator or anything that’s designed to keep things cold efficiently. Plus, it can be a complete pain in the ass to have to open doors all the time just to get an ice-cold beverage. It’s way better to have your drinks in a big fucking trough that’s full of ice and water, so long as you can keep all the drunk bastards from peeing in the damned thing after it gets dark. As a bonus, if the binge continues for over 24 hours, it’s a nice place for everyone to take a quick bath so their wives will let them back in the house.

Besides that, I’m pretty flush. I’ve got flip flops and will never buy another pair of those, since I saw a slack-jawed yokel trying on several pair barefooted at Old Navy. Maybe it’s me, but I’d rather not share those sorts of foot diseases with the public at large. I’m not much of a sunscreen user either. Once I get that first burn of the year I usually have a protective layer of blister water on my head that can effectively keep those pesky UV rays at bay. So a few more little chores and I’m ready for summer. I’m going to make every attempt to enjoy it this year. If we stop having winters, as we did last year, maybe I can do this sort of thing all year around.


  • For a guy who shaves everything, at least everything from the neck up, I really don’t care for the shaving all that much. Still, every so often I don’t hate it. This is because every so often I manage to get a really good razor. It should be the same as they always are, but occasionally I’ll find one that was apparently made by that Hanzo dude from those Kill Bill movies. I can use it for three or four months and it’s still stunningly sharp. I’m rocking one of those now. When it finally becomes dull, I fear I may be compelled to have a memorial service and then bury it in the ground for future generations to find.
  • If you love podcasts, check out On Cinema with Tim Heidecker (Tim and Eric) and Gregg Turkington (Neil Hamburger). It’s probably an easy target to mock, but that’s why it’s sort of brilliant.

Buona sera, senorina, kiss me goodnight.


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