Friday, November 28, 2008

DUDE & FOOD ...


So …


The other night I got up in the middle to make one of my infrequent raids on the old fridge …okay, so their fairly frequent but I usually just window shop these days. HONESTLY ... I get up, open the door look around for goodies and then end up getting a glass of water and going back to bed. But on this particular night I had more sinister intentions – you see, Shemetra had brought home a nice 2 liter bottle of orange soda … it was for Jared (DaddyO gets diet Coke ONLY). It’s 2:30 in the morning – not a creature stirring. I make my move. My side of the bed is against the wall so getting out requires some agility (so as not to disturb Mrs. O) and some fortitude (just in case I do). Success … and from there it is a short tip-toe to the fridge and the frothy orange deliciousness. But, alas, I open the door and there … where it should be … is the two liter bottle. But it is nearly completely EMPTY … I’m sayin’ the thing has about half a thimbleful of orange soda in the very bottom of it. “Who the … what the … why would anybody …”


Rage, despair, bewilderment …


... and then a shudder of realization. My son is no longer my little boy, no longer the kid he used to be. He is now a DUDE … a fledging, a young-blood but a dude nonetheless. Only a DUDE would drink all except the last fifth of an ounce of soda so he wouldn’t have to dispose of the bottle.


Well, it’s been a long time since I co-habited with another DUDE so I thought it might be worth my while to remind myself what that was like so I can prepare myself for what’s in store. DUDE just turned fourteen so, the way I see it, I have four more years before I kick him out … I mean, send him out … into the world. Couple of DUDE stories for those of you who haven’t had the privilege of encountering one in its natural habitat.


When Shemetra and I were dating, she made me this gorgeous chocolate birthday cake. It was the most amazing cake I had ever seen … chocolate with shaved pieces of Hershey bar and little silver sugar candies on top. It was divine – when she gave it to me I just knew THAT girl loved her some ME. Next day, one of my roommates stayed home from work because he had a cold. Later that day, he called me at work, “Uh, VanO, I was wondering if I could have some of your cake.” I should have known better – I mean, this was a DUDE. I knew that the only consumables in the house were a half a box of four month old Grape Nuts, a can of tuna and my cake. But I gave in. “Sure, buddy. Have a piece.” Well, I got home that evening looking forward to my dinner of grape nut tuna casserole and chocolate cake for desert. When I lifted the bowl that had been covering my cake I witnessed a veritable miracle. Before that moment I would never have believed that a sliver of cake that thin could have remained upright. There it was, quivering on the plate, a piece of cake so thin you could see through it. I gasped, and the slight stir of air it caused knocked the piece of cake over and it disintegrated.


Rage, despair, bewilderment. “DUDE … seriously!?!”


Then there was the time (same apartment) when the other DUDES and I decided to have a bunch of fellas over to watch a football game. They all came in. At first I had them take of their shoes so as not to dirty the carpet, but when I realized that the room smelled of corn chips and there were no corn chips on the premises I had them all put their shoes back on. Someone had the grand idea of ordering pizza, which we would all throw in for. I ordered it … but as we were going around asking people to contribute, one DUDE had forty five cents; another had a bus token and a ticket stub, a third had an expired coupon for a different pizza shop … some had no money at all. Out of twenty DUDES I collected about six dollars … and the pizza was already ordered.


Rage, despair, bewilderment …


... but wait, that’s not the worst part. I coughed up the thirty five bucks needed to cover the balance of the meal and, just as the pizza was arriving, the phone rang. It was Shemetra … so I had to take that call, I mean the girl LOVED her some ME and I LOVED me some her. We talked for a few minutes. When I got off the phone – maybe twenty minutes later – every box of pizza, I mean EVERY SINGLE BOX was empty!!! All that was left were the grease spots on the bottom. “DUDES … seriously!!???!!!” I watched the football game while eating tuna and grape nuts.


There are many such stories, most of them ending with me hungry – ALL ending in rage, despair and bewilderment. And now that Jared is fourteen, I fear that the cycle may repeat itself. But, look on the bright side … I am older and wiser now. And yesterday I took three Devil-Dogs out of the box and hid them in strategic places throughout the house. So, if you will excuse me, I am going to have a snack. .........................


………………Well …no Devil Dogs!!! The DUDE strikes again …


.... rage … despair …bewilderment. “Jared … DUDE …seriously!!!???!

4 comments:

VallyP said...

Oh this is brilliant Van! What a great story teller you are..you should publish it in a magazine..I meant it! It really made me chuckle because it seems DUDES never die..ok..get old...I have one alive and kicking and 60!

How many times have I sloped over to the fridge to finish off that choccy bar I felt like saving for later and found it...gone... not to mention the fave cookies..always gone, or the cashew nuts..don't stand a chance...so I know, you know...

~VanO~ said...

Well, I guess I deserve it -- having been a DUDE myself. It goes around and it comes around!

VallyP said...

And then it goes around again? Wait till your kids are older and they start getting precious about their stuff in the fridge..hehe..

Corwin said...

Wow, that Steve Schoff could really be a pig sometimes....