With all of the Olympic golds that Michael Phelps won, here’s the real champ. Isabella in our back yard.
I’m going to go political here. And I will catch hell for it.
I am a firm believer in the Fahrenheit scale. When it comes to daily atmospheric temperatures, it is far superior to the Celsius scale.
Now, why would I go crazy anti-science-y all of a sudden? Yes, Celsius is the perfect scale to measure science-ish stuff: Water freezes at 0 and boils at 100. Life on earth requires water. So, yeah, Celsius. Water. Naturally.
But, we live in a post-science era, where it doesn’t matter what a fact is if it doesn’t “feel” like a fact. This what my politicians are telling me.
And, that is why I love the Fahrenheit scale. Because, it Feels right. And when I say “feel,” I don’t mean in some abstract emotional sense. But how a temperature “feels” on my skin.
For most people, the range of 0 to 100 is the range they will mostly exist in. (Your last Geometry test, for example.) When it comes to temperature, there is nothing more secure in the (emotional) feeling that there is a low-point (0˚) and a high point (100˚). Anything beyond those parameters yields a warning from your favorite weathercaster. (Extreme Heat Advisory).
Talk to me about water boiling at 100˚. Ok. How many people have ever suffered through a 100˚ Celsius heat wave and lived to tell the tale?Human experience has a limit of 100. Anything more (other than a few degrees) becomes theoretical. Burn your finger on the stove? How hot? I dunno, Hot. Licked some dry ice? How cold? I dunno. Cold.
So, the beauty of Fahrenheit is that it expresses a range of the coldest a human is likely to experience and the highest they will experience. Outliers exist for sure (International Falls, Minnesota. Death Valley, California). But, when you go beyond the 0˚ and the 100˚ you know that you are experiencing something extraordinary, something regular folk don’t experience.
For all my Celsius fans, tell me how excited you get when it’s 38˚C or it’s -6˚C with a high of -2˚C. People spend months of their lives hoping the temperature will get above 0˚. They live in the negatives.
I believe in being positive. I will always be positive. I am an American, for crying out loud. So, foreigners, your “0” is not zero. And, 100 is the top of the scale. Nothing better than 100.
And, I will give America 100% when I am elected President.
Make America Fahrenheit Again.
(Voice in my head: Ummm… We always were Fahrenheit…
Me: Shut up.)
Getting in the pool with 9-year-old Isabella…
Iz: Ew, Daddy! There’s a bug!
Me: A bug? What kind of bug?
Iz: It’s a beetle with wings! Ewww!
Me: Is his name Paul McCartney?
Iz: Wait. What?
Me: Well, you said Beatle. with Wings. So, Paul, then.
Iz: What are you talking about?
Me: Certainly not Ringo. And John and George have left us.
Iz: Can I splash you now?
I realize that I have have neglected my DDFT fan base by not reporting on Isabella’s (she’s 9) International gymnastics competition. A Gold Medal (i.e. Best in the World), a couple of silvers.
And, I have boasted and boasted about her to anyone with at least one functional ear. And, I sing:
“She is a Champion, my friend…” Freddie Mercury rolls over in his grave.
Since, we are talking music, here’s my story..
Leaving Los Angeles (from the Burbank airport, because LAX is, I believe, one of Dante’s rings of Hell) heading to Atlanta. (Long story, spending the night at Grandma’s before we all drive down to Orlando. World of Mickey Mouse. Look at my joy.)
But, I digress.
Back in Burbank, at the Southwest gate heading toward a layover in Las Vegas, I want my phone charged to 100%. I spy a three-seat charging station. The middle seat is empty. I dash.
As I approach, I notice an obvious Rocker-type guy: Middle-aged, long curly black hair, blue jeans, Quiet Riot T-shirt. He says something to the guy in seat number three. They are together. Seat No. 3 guy is more clean-cut, short hair, tweed sports jacket. But, he obviously rocks. He’s got ‘tude.
I sit and charge up between them
I glance over at Seat #1 guy. He’s looking at a Quiet Riot website.
Whenever I’m in these situations, I usually employ the Urinal Rule (“Eyes Forward, and Don’t Talk to Your Neighbors”). But, this time, I couldn’t help myself.
Me: So, are you guys in a band?
Given the hair, T-shirt, and the Website, it wasn’t that much of a leap.
#1 (annoyed): What?
Me (air-guitarring): You play?
#1: We’re in Quiet Riot.
And, I swear to you, my mouth and hand were reflexive.
Me: No shit! (while my hand formed the devil’s horns rock gesture.)
Me: Are you playing in Vegas.
#1 (clearly not wanting this conversation to continue): No, we’re hooking up with the rest of the band and heading to Santa Rosa for a show. (Then) Hey #3 (whatever his name is), did you call Bob…
This was my cue. I took my 86% charged phone and got up and headed back to the seat next to future World Champion, Isabella.
Me: You see those guys, they are rock stars.
Iz: The ones with the Southwest uniforms.
Me: No, the guy with the hair like Mommy. And the other guy.
Iz: Ok. And…?
Me: No “And.” Just. They’re musicians.
She goes back to playing on the phone.
Meanwhile, I furiously Google Quiet Riot. #1 is Frankie Benali, the only long-time member of the band. He’s the drummer and also manager. #3 is probably Chuck Wright, but I don’t really know the band like John, Paul, George, and Pete.
When we board, I notice that Wright (with what looks like a bass guitar on his shoulder) has a higher boarding number and gets a better seat than Benali. I’m guessing the people who handle their flight arrangements are in fact, Benali and Wright themselves.
When we land in Vegas, I notice Benali standing by the gate, looking for Wright. I resist the urge to ask for a selfie. But, I secretly do the devil horns thing with my hands…
Note: The only head banging on the flight occurred when we hit some turbulence over Barstow. Always keep your seat belts on.
Since it’s June, it must be Street Curb Numbering month. This is the time of year when various “well-meaning” “non-profit” “neighborhood-oriented” “community-based” folks want to paint my house’s address number on the curb outside of my home.
After dropping off the girls at school: I came home to this on my door knob:
It’s an ADVISORY NOTICE!!
Why are you screaming? You’re not official anything.
Blah blah blah.
Let me get this straight, you are going to paint over the numbers on my curb (which are already quite clear) with new paint?
They leave a leaflet on my door knob about how important it is that my house number be clear to First Responders in an emergency. For my family. Think of the Children. (LOL. They don’t read this blog, do they.)
Their service is free. But did they mention “donations are collected at the door.”
So, let me say to you. Thanks for the public service, but No Thank You.
Reading the fine print:
Should I expect rudeness?
Attention Curb Painter Professionals: Customer Service 101… Don’t let people know that they are going to be treated like crap. Literally in their own home. Just say: Expect to be bullied by a guy at the door demanding money for a service you did not request, then call us. And vent all you want to the wall. We’ve never seen this before. Never. I swear. Our business model is not based on this aspect. We are People people.
Now, I’ve watched The Sopranos, Goodfellas, The Godfather. Hell, I was born in northern Jersey. I know a shakedown when I see one.
Read this in the best mafioso voice you can muster:
The Collector: So, uh. We painted your curb for yous.
Me: I didn’t ask for that, but thanks.
The Collector: Yeah, but. You see, there’s a “donation” that we ask for. Twenty dollahs.
Me: But, I didn’t ask for you to do that. And, technically, the curb is City property.
The Collector: You know, we do this as a public service. It would be terrible if something happened to your beautiful house.
The Collector: And, the fire department or police couldn’t find it because you had no number on the curb.
Me: Yeah, but, it’s right there on the side of the house. Numbers on the street are sequential. Also, Google maps and all…
The Collector: It would be tragic if those numbers fell off. Like, in a wind storm…
Me: Wind storm?
The Collector: Yeah. Santa Ana winds. And, then a horrible thing happens here. Is that your daughter’s tricycle over there? Is that your beautiful wife I hear in the kitchen? I don’t know what I would do if something should befall dem.
Me: Um. I’m about to call 911.
The Collector: Good luck with that. They won’t find you. Ever… Twenty dollahs.
Me: Let me get my wallet.
[I’m going to go ahead and officially © copyright this. Because, I hear that Led Zeppelin is in town. And, also because this would be a hilarious bit in something. Why aren’t people asking me to write with them? Oh… Because I never asked…]
A typical car ride home:
After school, pulling up to a stoplight, I mention the guy on the bike with the empty baby seat behind him.
Me: Oo. Look at that invisible baby!
Julianna (she’s 11): What baby? Where?
Me: On the bike, behind the guy.
Isabella (9): Daddy, there’s no baby there?
Me: Yes, there is. It’s invisible.
J: Dad, there’s no baby there.
Iz: Yeah, the chair is empty.
Me: It’s an invisible baby. (Scientifically wistful…) They are very rare.
J: Wait. You can see it? An actual baby?
Me: Yes, definitely.
Iz: How do you know there’s a baby there?! I can’t see it!
J: Yeah, how?! How can you see an invisible baby?!
Me: Because, I know what an invisible baby looks like.
And, this is why they hate me.
Taking the girls to school this morning, we get in the car.
The dashboard beeps and tells me:
“Oil Maintenance Required”
Required? Like I’m taking an SAT quiz. Or I got arrested last week buying coke from a street dealer? And, I have to take a blood test?
Wait, where were we? Oh. On oil. (Two instances of alliteration there. Shakespeare.)
Then, the dashboard beeps:
Low Gas. 8 miles.
I know that, but Costco is 10 miles that way, and school is 12 miles the other way. Girls, I think we can make it. No guarantees.
(Funny thing about buying a Prius: Yeah, it gets 46 miles a gallon, but the tank is about a thimble full. You’re still at the gas station every other day. Like with your compensating-much? Hummer.)
Then, out of nowhere, the what-the-hell-is-this light (flat tire, as I learned) comes on. Doesn’t tell me which tire, just “a” tire, Shit.
So, I pull over and check. It all looks good.
We head to school.
Isabella (she’s 9): Dad, I don’t think you closed your door all the way.
Me: Why, Honey?! Why?
Iz: Because of the alarm. And the wind.
Shit. I pull over.
Me: Is everyone Ok? Seat belts? Bagel Bites? Fuzzy Bunnies? Whatever.
Me: So we’re good?
Julianna (she’s 11): Yes. Except for the gas thing…
Me: Leave it alone.
Julianna: Also, the flat tire.
Me: Alone. Leave it. Yoda. Said.
Surprise, I get the girls to school. No flats. A cheap gas station is literally a block away. Everything is good. Then, I get home.
When I turn off the car. Beeeep: Key Battery Low.
Excuse me? Keys have batteries? Since when. You are kidding me, right:
Prius: No, dude. FOB. Battery. Google it.
Shit. Why does my car hate me?
Isabella (she’s 9) is interested in the Mona Lisa. She goes to an Arts school. Hippie.
It just so happens, I bought the Leonardo Da Vinci sketch books like, 100 years ago.
Isabella is confused.
Iz: Which turtle is he? Turtles can’t draw.
Me: Different Turtle.
Iz: Is he on TV?
Me: Different Leonardo.
Iz (to her 11 year old sister): Julianna! Julianna!! See! I told you Leonardo wasn’t just a turtle.
J: He wasn’t?
Iz: He’s also an actor. On the TV! The Titanic!
When did “doing the dishes” become a euphemism? Because, I was texting with a friend when my wife asked me if I could hurry up and do the dishes.
I relayed this to my friend: Wife wants me to do dishes.
And, my friend was all: Oh, I see. Tuesday night. Dishes need doing.
I was like: Yeah, 4 people. Dirty dishes.
And he was: Your wife asked for that? I see. LOL. Winky emoji.
How old am I? I know that Debbie Did Dallas. Did she also Do Dishes?
Oh, my word. She did.
When you turn 50, you’re supposed to visit the doctor.
Yeah, I don’t want that.
Doctor: Let’s just make sure everything is Ok. And, while we’re at it…
Me: I already don’t like where this conversation is going, and now you want to add a parenthetical clause?
Doc: Let’s talk about your diet. Exercise. Life style. Sleep. Blood pressure. We want to add years to your life.
Me: Yes, Doctor. But, you are adding years to the end of my life. If you want to add years, give me a couple more 1984s. Because, I totally would have asked that cute redhead cheerleader to the prom.