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Tuesday, 07 July
Patriot Acts

As usual, the Fourth of July provided unbridled patriotism at every turn, provided that your definition of "patriotism" includes words such as "Dionysian" and "gut-wrecking." We showed up at Will and Julea's barbecue fest armed with a package of hot dogs and some buns. AMERICA! They never even found the grill.

"We've got so much fucking potato salad," said Will, throwing a longing glance at the already-groaning table. Will eats as if someone was going to chop off his feet if he didn't clean his plate. Naturally, he also has the metabolism of a starved moth, and his girlfriend--who also loves her food--is something like five-two and should be wearing a decal that says "Actual Size Shown."

Presently, more guests arrived, all of them hauling ridiculous quantities of food; it was, by the climax of the evening, something like a UN humanitarian project, assuming the UN is in the habit of airlifting pallets laden with Doritos and barbecue sauce to Somalia, which, of course, I assume they are. One-hitters were passed around, giving the evening a vaguely key party-ish feeling. Well, not really. Our friends are not skeevy. However, once that thought had taken root, I was unable to prevent myself from thinking about the effects of barbecue sauce on vaginal pH levels, and so I kept a sharp eye on the wife.

A couple of asshole kids walking by the place set off some firecrackers. Minutes later, a couple of cops ambled up to the gate.

"You know, there are a lot of cops down here," one of them said amiably. Will and Julea live down by the water, real close to where the official pyro show is shown; the cops were a real presence by design. "So if you guys have any illegal fireworks, I'd think twice about setting them off."

"It wasn't us!" cried somebody. "It was a couple kids walking by!" While this was true, it was also cutting zero ice with the cops. They just gave us their best Scooby-Doo police chief hairy eyes. This, while uncomfortable, turned out to actually be really fortunate, since party guest Tony chose this exact moment to emerge from the house utterly laden with illegal fireworks. The cops didn't see him pale and beat a hasty retreat into the back yard, where he likely frantially crammed all his illicit booty directly up his ass.

Later, after we had all stuffed ourselves stupid and the remaining food had succumbed to gravitational strain and sunk to the center of the Earth and disrupted tectonic activity everywhere, we went across the street to watch the fireworks. We lifted our faces to the night sky and beheld magnesium hellfire painted across the face of the world!

Fireworks are fucking boring as hell. Every year I stand there, po-faced and arms crossed, staring at the same old god damn fucking smiley faces and Tina Turner hair displays.

This year, we got narration in the form of the two shaved apes behind us, who happened to be semi-crashers to Will and Julea's party. They were friends of some friends. They treated us to a running commentary.

Some bored, alcoholic pyrotechnician managed to figure out how to explode heavy metals so that they displayed a cube shape.

"Square pegs!" cried one of the apes. "Dick in a box!" cried the other. They laughed raucously, and I felt myself tensing.

More enervating displays followed. Some of them looked like other things, which seemed to excite people. "Hey, that's a heart!" screamed our pals. "It's giving me a heart-on!"

The wife turned to me and actually said, "Want to go back and find the bottle of Rebel Yell?" This sentence has never actually been posed to me before, but I immediately assented. Unfortunately, some other lunatic had already drained the bottle of Rebel Yell, and so we contented ourselves with the dregs of a rum bottle, but at least we had made our escape from the Gehenna of fireworks-watching and its attendant narration. Then Will walked out of the house.

"You guys left too, huh?" he said.

"Yeah. I fucking hate fireworks. Plus, we were trapped with a couple of douchebags who couldn't shut the fuck up."

"I just didn't like the tension," said Will, which I didn't quite understand, but I mentally categorized the statement as "I hate fireworks too," just for my own ease.

Naturally, minutes later, when the show was over, everyone returned. Including the two assholes. We were standing in the back yard, gathered around a lovely chimenea fire, just kind of everyone all relaxing, sensing the evening was drawing to a close. It was nice; just friends basking in the warmth of fire and friendship.

"This one time, I glued a chick's hair to her pillow with my come," said one of the assholes, virtually apropos of nothing, as if "apropos" even belongs in the same sentence with, well, anything his neurons were capable of generating. There was a glacial silence as we stared at the mammal making these honking, vaguely human-like noises. It was like watching some early chordate try out his vocal anatomy. He continued to make noises with his mouth, but Will, the wife and myself chose this moment to simply turn around and walk in any direction that might take us away from the sound of his voice. Others soon joined us, gathering joylessly in the front yard, flicking our eyes at each other, silently communicating: "I didn't imagine that, did I? That really happened?" We hung our heads as we heard more goatish laughter floating to us from the back yard, and we shuddered as we imagined what could possibly be said this time to the people who were too uncomfortable to just leave.

We eventually left, spent and emotionally damaged, and really totally fucking full of food. Those guys were still there when we left. Will has sworn to the Elder Gods that they will never darken his door again. Then he ate a gallon of potato salad and farted himself to sleep.

AMERICA!

Summary | Skot | 07 Jul, 2009 |

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Comments

Looks like your douchebags stopped by to spam your comments too. These guys are like gum on your shoe ... you can't get fully rid of them and their residue tugs at the sole of consciousness long after they have been scraped off.

Comment number: 019606   Posted by: . on July 9, 2009 10:41 AM from IP: 207.109.69.9

Are you kidding me? I've been dying for guitar lessons.

Comment number: 019607   Posted by: Skot on July 9, 2009 02:36 PM from IP: 66.150.9.2

You too cool for school daddy-o?

Comment number: 019608   Posted by: mike of the North on July 10, 2009 07:27 PM from IP: 75.104.96.56

I just found your blog and GAWD, I love the way you write!

Comment number: 019614   Posted by: LeAnn on July 20, 2009 09:55 AM from IP: 69.64.225.212

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