I suppose it’s about time to properly introduce some cast of characters that you will be reading about in this blog. It is always difficult writing about someone you know. Will they be flattered? Will they get pissed? Is there some family contention or secret that I am about to reveal? I’ve thought about this and decided screw it, the art just flows from where it flows.
Let’s first visit my wife’s brother. He’s married and I have a neice and nephew from this union. None are related by blood to me which is to their shame. My family came over in 1632 on the Good Ship Betsy, we are practically Mayflower People. My wife’s family is from Chicago, not really Gatsby material if you ask me. But we love them anyway. They were our confidants, our best friends and our future babysitters until they decided to move away.
Right before my daughter was born they decided that they had enough of the big city and would be moving to the sticks. I would write the name of the town, but you couldn’t pronounce it. Think Green Acres with Humvee’s and you just about have it.
They will deny that they are Hippies, but you can be the judge. Because we all know that we love to judge others, just not ourselves.
They have a two children of their own and their reasoning for leaving was to be able to raise them in a different way, far from the big city. It was a family decision. If I was a man that read into statements, I might take that to mean that raising MY daughter in the city is downright foolish and that I must be a bad parent. But I leave that kind of stuff to my mother in law.
So they up and left with my niece and my future nephew to be raised in a commune. Ok, it’s not like that but it’s funnier if I say it is. In my head, I just can’t help imagining them running from Nazi’s in Austria, singing as they go along. Except that my sister in law is not a nun and to my knowledge never was. I suppose it is a possibility though, she’s a quite one that has some secrets.
As evidence that they are new age Hippies, I supply the following:
1. They have no Xbox. That’s hippie if I ever heard of one.
2. They have a compost heap and a special barrel thing that makes it compost. I don’t know exactly how this works, but I’ve seen it. All I know is that it turns like a big Bingo Wheel and poof, you get compost. I want to tell them that dirt worked fine for me, but this must be the Hippie way.
3. An above ground pool. How is this Hippie? It’s next to the compost heap.
4. I’m pretty sure my brother in law is a communist or a socialist. I’m not sure which, but he’s suspect.
5. They have a Bear Bell. What is this? It’s a special bell to wear out in the woods so that bears hear you coming and don’t eat you for lunch. Granted, I gave it to them as a gift, but what was I supposed to do? That’s my niece and nephew out there, they need to be prepared.
6. Driving 20 miles takes only 20 minutes. What kind of Hippie traffic is this. Everyone knows that you need to live somewhere that takes you a good hour in rush hour traffic to go 20 miles.
7. The word “Hemp” to them implies more to them than just one use. Only Hippies find a way to make pot more than pot. No, I don’t want a hemp rope, but thank you. Look, it’s never going to be legal, give it up. Just keep pretending you have glaucoma and be done with it.
8. She’s not a natural red head and believes in colonoscopies.
I could go on, but I prefer to stop there. The point is, my wife and I were abandoned. We had just had our new kiddo and our safety blanket left us. And they took my niece and nephew, very inconsiderate.
When my niece was first born, she hated me. Couldn’t stand me. Everytime I tried to pick her up, she would scream like I was a Republican. It took 6 months of this before she finally realized that I was actually related to her. Six months of bribes, money, the offer of credit cards. And when they left, they took her with no regard to my feelings and hard work what so ever. What if I had gotten her a pony, what was I supposed to do with that now? Give it to the glue factory? The Hippies are responsible for the demise of Tinkerbell the pony, I hope they can live with themselves.
But more than anything we had lost our friends, our one true compatriots in the art of ripping on people. No one could understand us like they could. And even more important, all Hippies are pacifists so I was sure my daughter would be safe with them. No one can beat up a pacifist, otherwise, that just makes you a bully. Didn’t they watch Ben Kingsley in Gandhi?
And who would my daughter grow up with now? She and her cousins could have ruled the school. They could have been the new Justice League with faboulous Wonder Twin powers. It would have been great until the Hippies decided to cut and run and ruin my dream with their compost heaps.
It took my wife and I a long time to come to terms with this. Many nights were spent in the Hossman family bed, wondering why they had forsaken me. Was it a better life? I don’t see how it could be without me involved, but to each his own. We came to terms with our shunning and regulated ourselves to being the leper colony in their friendship wheel. Sure, we get letters and once a care package. But make an effort, we’re lonely for our friends. Let me know that I look good, ask me if I’m working out. A compliment wouldn’t be to much to ask would it?
They are doing good in Hippie land and live a nice, isolated life. My neice grows about a foot everytime I see her and my nephew is the new Fonzie. I’m sure that their hydroponic field is growing well and they are keeping tabs on K-fed. I know that it won’t be long before they get a car that runs on corn-oil and we wish them the best. We have visited a few times and hopefully will again soon. Tinkerbell II is about ready to travel.