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Tuesday, 16 December
All Yesterday's Parties

The weekend has been, ah, full.

I've been doing the Christmas show, of course, to surprisingly good houses; I guess there's a big hunger out there for nontreacly holiday fare, moving at least one set of parents to ask themselves: "Should I take my pre-teen children to see a coal-black comedy about whether or not Santa Claus raped one of his reindeer and molested Rudolph into catatonia?" The clear answer: You betcha! I hope the parents got a good laugh for their efforts, because their kids are probably going to be sleeping with the lights on for a few months. (In the very first monologue, a story is told of one former reindeer who lands badly on a roof and shatters his leg, killing him. Santa leaves him there, dead on the roof, citing a busy schedule. I imagine these children are going to nervously tiptoe out on Christmas morning to scan the top of their house for castoff reindeer corpses, which is a pretty festive state of mind for young children.)

In addition to the show, there also began the inevitable landslide of parties. Friday marked the annual moral debacle that happens to be the shared birthday of three female friends who have, over time, dubbed themselves the "Vagitarians." They are all three of them despicable, amoral sluts who every year take the opportunity to infect all of their friends with whatever blinding, reprehensible soul-disease they possess, and then everyone takes turns acting out Lost Weekend as if set in a low-gravity environment. Of course we love them for this: so after the show on Friday, the booze was brought forth; insectile friends of questionable provenance invaded the proceedings ("Jesus, I thought that guy was dead!"); musical instruments were abused; and I imagine that at some point someone got sticky with someone else, possibly in the rafters--or maybe the roof, atop the cooling remains of an abandoned reindeer.

Or so we heard. We're old and married now, so we left before the Drunky-fever consumed the masses. Everyone looks at us rather pityingly now, when we do things like leave the party early; it's the sort of look that says, "Soon you will vote Republican." Which is fine. Especially if it means sparing myself from, say, fumbling around myopically in the middle of some awful hyena gangbang while the speakers blare old Fixx tunes. Listen, you don't know some of these theater parties.

Saturday night was a Christmas party proper at the house of our friends J. and S. They are good eggs, and it's another annual deal, and J. also happens to be a bit of a cook, so he always puts out ridiculously good, opulent spreads. We showed up after I was done with the play, and as we walked in, we beheld: Nobody We Knew. The place was filled to the gills with what I'm sure are very lovely people, but we knew none of them, save for the hosts, and all the conversations seemed pretty hermetically sealed in that intimate way that you can spot a mile off and now what do we do? And then! We spotted our friends K. and K.--FRIENDS! We leapt at them like rats leap at unwary junkies. "Jesus God," I whispered hoarsely at one of the K.s, "I don't know any of these fuckers." "Neither do we," he replied. "You have to eat some of this cheese."

So we ate cheese, and sausage, and ham, and other great stuff, and admired their pet rabbit, who surveyed the entire proceedings with an odd mixture of benignity and fear. Rabbits have, it seems, two conscious states: Abject Holy Terror, and Fuck Off, I'm Eating. Which is, I note, not unlike the two conscious states of your average partygoer who has no idea who anyone else in the room is.

Eventually, a couple of other friends of ours showed up, J. and P., but we left shortly after that, leaving another wake of "They Need Their Gout Medicine" faces.

Sunday is easily summarized: Sleep in. Football. Flap hands disgustedly at the floppy, wan Seahawks. Go do the show. Home.

And then tonight, the wife had a bit of a girls' night out, so I had a couple of fellows over to watch Monday Night Football and drink beer and eat pizza and--of course--be dicks to each other. This is what boys do, after all--yes, you gay boys too, you know it--you piss all over each other just for the sheer fun of it. Why? Well . . . I think that science has shown us over and over again that boys are just kind of stupid and mean. You can look it up.

So we just hung out, crucifying each other as much as possible, in between bouts of mocking the dumb brutes crashing into one another on the screen. As it was my home turf--my married home turf that I neglected to screen for possible mockery-targets--I got my share. My wife has, for murky reasons I don't wish to examine, a certain book called The "Friends" Cookbook. Yes, as in the TV show. D. noticed it. "Skot? So . . . you're gay then." (Sorry. This is what dumb boys do.) Later on, they both noticed the wife's little jar of hand lotion that I stupidly did not think to move to somewhere safe, like Greenland. "Lotion! Hand lotion. So . . . you're gay then." I should have told them that, yes, I enthusiastically jerk off in my living room, preferably to the stimulating images found in The "Friends" Cookbook. But then we were back to the game, and we discussed--again, very boy thing--football players with terribly amusing names, like Algie Crumpler and the woeful Brian Griese (pronounced: "greasy"), whose terribly amusing name in no way mitigates against the fact that he is also a very terrible quarterback.

The game ended, finally--with the losing Miami listlessly half-attempting a very sad, funereal non-attempt at a late comeback; they looked like poorly re-animated corpses who had been unceremoniously dumped out of their coffins and made to run bone-clattering wind sprints while their coach chewed blackly and hopelessly on his dire moustache--and the boys left, farting defeatedly into the night, thinking of Tuesday, that deuce of spades of weekdays.

But hey. The wife is home; the evening was fun; the pizza was good; there is no actual evidence of gout or creeping Republicanism; and there are no dead reindeers on the roof. Welcome to this very John Irving ending. Good night.


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Comments

ever notice that dumb boys like to shout instructions at the TV during football? why dont they shout instructions during, say a wrestling match or curling?

Comment number: 002075   Posted by: teenaweena on December 16, 2003 07:50 AM from IP: 146.82.36.102

ever notice that dumb boys like to shout instructions at the TV during football?

Of course. I do this all the time. "GET OUT OF BOUNDS! GET OUT OF BOUNDS! YOU SHITHEAD! YOU'RE FIRED!"

As for wrestling or curling: Nobody watches these things.

Comment number: 002076   Posted by: Skot on December 16, 2003 08:16 AM from IP: 140.107.120.123

In the early 80s, the World Wrestling Federation and the International Curling Council considered a merger, which would have involved either bringing wrestlers onto the ice or curling stones into the rink. There were insurance issues.

Comment number: 002077   Posted by: anapestic on December 16, 2003 11:36 AM from IP: 66.160.108.162

oh yeah, i usually shout at martha stewart: GODDAMMIT WOMAN, DONT USE THE GRANULATED SUGAR, USE THE POWDERED SUGAR!!!

Comment number: 002078   Posted by: teenaweena on December 16, 2003 01:57 PM from IP: 146.82.36.102

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