Notes from the Small Pond...PatheticThe one thing that has to happen before anything else is that we have to schedule a week on our calendar for a summer vacation, otherwise the next thing you know it’ll be November and we’ll be eating turkey and writing out Christmas cards and recapping 2012....
By: Parnell Thill, Pine Journal
The one thing that has to happen before anything else is that we have to schedule a week on our calendar for a summer vacation, otherwise the next thing you know it’ll be November and we’ll be eating turkey and writing out Christmas cards and recapping 2012 in one of those annoying, self-centered “Christmas Letters” and we’ll realize we never took a vacation at all and the only thing we really did was go to work, come home, eat, clean, work some more, pray for the weekend and then try to squeeze in some fun and relaxation and find some nobility between doing the laundry, having the cars fixed, cleaning the basement, vacuuming the rugs, mowing the grass (which I sort of like and actually categorize as “fun”) – how pathetic – and then on Sundays go to church, watch the Vikes – how pathetic – and, at about 3:30 p.m. start worrying about Monday morning like a bunch of kids on the night before the First Day of School.
Another thing we have to do is guess correctly which week the weather will be nice, because one thing that I cannot tolerate is standing in the doorway of some rustic cabin or some Caribbean hotel balcony staring at the rain and wind, listening to the time tick away on the one vacation we take all year, fighting off the urge to scream or break something and end up with a migraine headache from all the tension building up trying to pretend and convince everyone else that the rain and wind doesn’t matter because, after all, it’s about being together and not about lying on some beach towel with the sun baking your skin while you finally get around to reading that Pynchon novel, sipping Tanqueray until you drift off listening to the collective voices of the other vacationers all around you, chit-chatting about what they did and what they’re going to do and what they would do if only they had the time or money. Freaking pathetic.
And, if you ask me, another thing that’s imperative if the summer is going to be at all decent is that the Twins have got to find a way, one way or another, to win, for God’s sake, and not spend another season fighting off a thousand injuries and mediocrity on the mound and the whole “nice-guys-finish-last” flavor threading through since Tom Kelly made it so fascinating a hundred years ago when I was wearing Zubas and a mullet, listening to Edie Brickell and the New Bohemians sing about philosophy being a walk on the slippery rocks and the only problems my kids were having had to do with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and that bratty little girl down the block who used to steal toys out of our garage and then come walking into our yard a week later, playing with them in a way that was either completely brazen or absolutely idiotic, but so amazing, either way, that I was never able to foil her. Totally pathetic.
But, then again, we might as well not plan anything anyway because we’ve got about 30 graduation parties and 12 weddings to attend, each one calling for a card and a $20 or $50 bill, depending, so we’ll be broke by the 4th of July and crabby until Labor Day when the year really starts anyway, no matter what people say about New Year’s Day, which really stinks as far as holidays go and everyone knows it. Pathetic. I mean, who wouldn’t rather have a national holiday and an extra day of vacation in the middle of the summer instead of in freezing cold January when you just had a week off for Christmas anyway, for crying out loud. Seriously, how pathetic is that?
Cloquet resident Parnell Thill, former Pine Knot author of the “Notes From the Small Pond” column for nearly a decade, is resurrecting the column on a limited basis as he works on a collection of short stories by the same title, along with other writing projects.
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