• CSI:Birmingham

    Sometimes things happen to you and you contact the proper authorities but they don’t do anything, and that’s when you have to handle the matter yourself.

    Of course, when we woke up last weekend and found our mailbox crushed in a manner that appeared to be more purposeful than accidental, we chalked it up to rowdy teens, hoped someone would step forward, and went ahead and replaced the wooden beam and box.*

    The next day I saw a mailbox down the street destroyed in precisely the same way, and it turns out that a neighbor witnessed the demise of her mailbox and called the police with a description of the vehicle.  (A dark Toyota Tundra type truck with brush guards).  I don’t know what a brush guard is, but apparently that narrows down the list of suspects quite a bit.  I contacted the police as well, and they promised to get back to me, but as of now I’ve not heard from them or the perpetrator.  I’m a bit ticky, as I get the feeling they know exactly who it is.  I’d appreciate an apology and reimbursement for the new mailbox and its installation.

    In the interim, however, Porter and I used the occasion to film CSI:Birmingham, which is obviously a takeoff on CSI:Miami.  It’s about 3.5 minutes long (not 12, like the screen says– apparently I have a long tail on the end of the movie that I can’t delete!)

    and sums up the case pretty well, except for the Lego.

    Enjoy, and I’ll keep you posted on the investigation:


    CSI:Birmingham– Mailbox Mayhem from anneglamore on Vimeo.
    *I replaced the box quickly because I was expecting two pounds of worms to be shipped to me via the Postal Service, and our mail lady dislikes us. I was sure she wouldn’t get out of her truck and walk the worms to our porch; she’d just return them. I need those worms because I’m starting a vermicomposting project, which promises to be great fun as well as extremely bloggable.

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    One year ago in My Tiny Kingdom: Looks Like I Won

  • Tiger Woods – Or Not

    Porter participated in a golf camp last week as Bill and I continued our search for the physical activity that’s going to rock his world.  His shorts were a good five inches longer than the other players’, as was his hair, and for the first couple of days he insisted on wearing his John Lennon sunglasses on the course.  The total effect was like dude, I think I’ll check out this thing called golf.

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    I look like Tom Petty, but I’m off to play a gnarly round of golf.

    If you drove to the course and only watched him for a moment you might have thought Hey– he looks like he has it in him to be a golfer! I bet Tiger Woods started out just this way, or Sergio Garcia or Phil Mickelson.

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    But if you watched for a little longer you would have seen this
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    Tra la la. I’m so deliciously excited that I found these magic walking sticks.

    or this
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    The chair I invented fits snugly on each butt cheek.

    Then you would have been thanking God that you ordered him a unicycle for his birthday.

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    Three years ago in My Tiny Kingdom: Still Haunted By Christmas

  • Bring It On

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    The annual Foosball tournament is Bill’s pet project, and he applies the same concentration and diligence to creating the teams and brackets as he does in crafting a legal brief.

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    None of the moms play foosball on a regular basis during the year, what with raising children and all, and the kids who are saddled with a mother as a teammate struggle to hide their disappointment.

    I was paired with Kimberly’s husband.  I was counting on his innate athleticism (he runs and plays tennis) to at least get us through the first round.  Finn and Drew were having none of it, though, and beat us before I was completely sure the game had started.  Maybe I should have worn my reading glasses to better track that tiny ball.

    Although her husband’s tennis skills weren’t helpful, Kimberly is even better and plays at level AA1.  I don’t understand the ranking system, but in practical terms this means she must play with the tennis pro or someone who was on the tour in order to find decent competition.  And she’s all about competition.

    I’m thinking it was her insane competitive drive that carried her and the Voice of Reason’s son through to the finals against Finn and Drew.  It was a ball-buster, and Drew was visibly nervous that he would let Finn down.
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    It was best 2 out of 3, and after the first game Finn and Drew did a few exercises to keep their wrists supple.

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    Finn was encouraging to Drew and put on a fabulous big brother act: “Way to save the goal, Drew.  Good defense.  Dude, that point was all you.”
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    It was sweet to watch, but his act was diluted when Finn them turned around and kicked Porter in the shins, saying, “Quit crowding me!  You’re always in my way!”  When I counseled him on his attitude toward Porter, he said, “I’ll be his brother, but I won’t be his friend if he keeps acting like such a baby all the time.”  He has a point.  Porter is socially immature, but the solution is not a kick in the scrotum, as far as I’ve read.

    Finn and Drew emerged victorious and pleased with themselves, and there was much high-fiving throughout the house.
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    This morning the boys were headed to the beach.

    “Have you buttered the boys?” I asked Bill, who was loading his backpack with his newly purchased kite, another of his favorite beach activities.  He really should have been a camp counselor.

    “No, but if it’s eating you, butter them yourself,” he said.

    “It’s not eating at me,” I said, and I let them go.

    Our Memphis friend shook his head at the whole exchange.  “I know a bunch of Yankees who’d need some serious translation for that.”

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    I’m traveling with people, including my husband, who “don’t get” blogs.  Bill insists I’m living in Second Life, although where he picked up that term I don’t know.  He also says that writing on a blog is like putting earrings on a pig.  You can call it what you want, but it’s not “real” writing, he says.  He’s no different from Richard Schickel in this regard.

    They’re both wrong, of course.  Why should the quality of the writing be based on whether it’s published in print or on the internet?

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    A look back in My Tiny Kingdom: Schickel Insults Blogs; Melee Ensues

  • Itchy Packages and Other Ballpark Tales

    Genital matters have come to the forefront in the barracks at Cooperstown. The coaches realized that they had more than baseball to deal with yesterday when several players complained that they were itchy underneath their baseball pants. It’s no wonder; they wear sliding shorts and play in the hot sun, then head to the barracks and trade pins and eat lunch before they shower.

    They’re required to wear their bathing suits in community showers, and apparently the lack of privacy and nudity has hampered their bathing efforts. The buildup of dust and sweat in such a tender area has resulted in a condition that Bill bluntly calls “crotch rot.” Regardless of its true name, once a couple of players contracted it, the disease became a badge of honor. It’s become widespread, so although some of our guys are walking a bit gingerly, they’re holding their heads high. We’re hopeful that the tutorial on scrotal cleansing and the ointment our team doctor has administered will lick the problem.

    Tuesday morning we played the North Carolina Riptide. Before the game we were warned that the Riptide had a “troublesome parent” among their fans, who would be escorted away by security if he had another outburst. This was heartening, as we had missed the holiday fireworks due to baseball, and we felt we deserved some. We spent the game leaving men on base at the end of each inning and scanning the opposing team’s fans for the offender. Could it be the man in the red polo? The one in the orange and white T-shirt? Sadly, we lost the game, the fan behaved himself and we left the game feeling we’d lost twice.

    Losing doesn’t affect the spirit of our cheering section, which appears to be one of the strongest at the park. We haven’t seen another team sing the ESPN theme in harmony, act out a riptide, namecheck the players in order, or yell, “Let’s get up in their kitchen, Blaze!” or “Tag the bag!” with such fervor. We’ve recently added “Shake and Bake!” to the repertoire, which hasn’t helped the team but cracks up the stands.

    Tuesday afternoon we were surprised when West Pines Florida’s high school football team showed up in baseball uniforms ready to play. The Guinness Book of World Records needs to head down there when updating its entry for “World’s Largest 12-year-old,” as the team had fourteen contenders. Finn pitched and I tried yelling, “Give ‘em your easy greasy, baby!” but he shook me off, and I reverted to more traditional forms of encouragement.

    If you’re organizing a baseball team, it helps to have a parent who owns two gourmet restaurants with you. After three days of pizza and chicken fingers, parents and players were getting grumpy. We gathered at a house and worshipped at the chef’s altar as he directed the preparation of grilled chicken and flank steak, guacamole, Greek salad, and four cheese macaroni. Our able bartender Ephraim (his choice of pseudonym) continued his winning streak, serving beer, wine, and exotic mixed drinks.

    Although we thought this was going to be a family vacation, I haven’t spent much time with Bill at all, as he’s staying in the barracks with the team. We’ve resorted to kissing through the fence at the start of each game. The cookout gave us time to sit down together and talk. That’s when I learned about the itch. I also found that this is many of the boys’ first experience dressing and undressing in front of others. Bill said he stripped down the other night while our pitcher looked on and said, “That just don’t bother you none at all, does it? “

    I also discovered that the Cooperstown laundry service, while highly praised, hasn’t been so dependable for our team. The Blaze has sent off the correct number of uniforms but received only partials back, and Bill’s underwear is AWOL in the Park, rather than on his derriere.

    We appreciate all your well wishes. Our team isn’t nearly the best here, but we’re set on having the best time of any group, and so far we’re succeeding.