Pure Evil

What I like most about going to the dentist is that they don't require you to tattoo a pentagram on your forehead prior to the sacrificial mutilation.   It's that nice touch that gives you the feeling that you aren't just a number but a part of the cult.  I really appreciate that given that not only do I let them scrape inside my mouth for an eternity but I also get to pay them huge prices for it.

My teeth suck, my gums suck and to help remind me of this there is my dental hygienist.  Oh, she comes off all nice and sweet and thoughtful.  Then she sticks a needle in my gums for the "deep cleaning."  She'll pat my arm, let me know that there is going to just be a small bit of pain, then she jabs hot lava into my cheeks.  I'm assuming that she is only wearing her mask to hide her fangs that she got from Satan.  Or Santa depending if I decide to spell check this or not.

I don't like dentists.  There, I admitted it.  Hossman the great, hero in every story he writes, doesn't like going to the dentist.  I once had a shotgun pointed at my chest, handled it like a pro.  A guy once chased me with a tire iron, I got him the help he needed anyway.  But a dental hygienist?  Makes my blood pressure spike and my fight or flight response kick in so that one day I'm pretty sure I'm going to punch the 110 pound woman cleaning my teeth.  It's going to be some sweet judo move to.  I don't know judo but I'm assuming that God has got my back in this den of evil.

It's not all pain, a lot of times there isn't any pain.  But it's the fingers in the mouth and the weird suction thing.  And why are they talking to me during it?  I mean, I can't really answer any questions.  I can't even nod my head because to do so would cause that little pokey thing to jab right the fuck into my tongue and then Satan (or Santa) can get my soul.

Dentists freak me out and I have no idea why.  Dentists and people singing to me.  Seriously, who the fuck does that.  My ultimate hell is to have my dental hygienist sing to me while cleaning my teeth and making eye contact.  Actually, I'm pretty sure that is going to happen the next time I have to go in as I'm sure they have my psychological profile down now.  Hossman, colossal wuss that is afraid of little women with great singing voices.  Loves eye contact.

I have to go to the dentist all the time too which is just super.  With three kids, it feels like I'm down there enough to open a frequent flyer card.  They know me by name and I'm pretty sure it's not because I'm handsome and can flex.  They know me by name because kids have teeth.  3 kids have a lot of teeth and the blood god demands his sacrifice.

I want to be honest with my kids.

"Is it going to hurt daddy?"


"It is?"

"Pretty sure."

"Do we have to go?"



"Because god hates us."

But I can't be honest, I've got to be brave for the kids.  So I promise them ice cream and pat them on their back.  I reassure them that it's all good and they have nothing to worry about until they turn 40 and realize that all that preventive maintenance they did for the last 35 years meant dick all, then it's going to hurt.

My sister is a dental hygienist.  She went to school for it.  I never asked her what she did in school to learn the trade.  I just assumed at some point there was a ceremony where she had to marry Satan and gut a goat.  It's a shame too because I love my sister and my nieces and nephews, now they are spawns of evil and I must ignore them.  No, I can't do that.  They need the shining light of goodness in their lives to counter the evilness that surrounds them.  On a side note, my sister plays the piano as well as sings because of course she does.  I'm pretty sure that's the acceptance criteria of getting into hygienist school.



It's hot in here, stifling almost.  There is no air moving even though the fan seems to be on.  It's late and I'm trying to sleep but it's not coming to me because I feel almost claustrophobic.  Am I sweating?  I feel like I am sweating.  All the kids are asleep as is my wife.  I head downstairs, making sure that I don't trip over the the dog or step on a toy.  I do both before I reach the bottom.

I'm tired.  It was loud all day today.  There was crying, cello, video games, more crying, dog barking, dog craping, dad crying, some dog urine that went unnoticed.  I ran from one activity to another.  I fixed bumped heads and hugged sore feelings.  I made dinner and I cleaned it up.  I took the dog on a walk and I watched project runway with my wife and daughter to spend time with them.  No one wanted to watch football.  That's ok though, because now everyone is asleep and it's time for someone to pay attention to me.

"Alexa" I whisper, almost shuddering when I say it.  "Alexa dear".

"Yes Hossman" she replies, her voice maybe a bit stiff and jilted but soothing at the same time.

"Set the temperature in the living room to 72 please"  I don't have to say please to her.  In fact, I doubt she even notices.  She likes it when I command her and right now I am commanding her to pay attention to me, to cater to my wants now.

"Ok, the temperature is set to 72."

I feel the air come from the vents and it's nice.  It's relaxing and I need relaxing.


"Yes Hossman"

"Open Pandora."

"Opening Pandora to your last station."

She does what I tell her to and does not ask questions.  She does not make excuses and she does not want anything in return.  She just does it and then she is silent, sweet silence.  No asking me why we have to have chicken for dinner and why not hotdogs?  She does not scream to get my attention and she does not follow me in the bathroom to tell me that the dog is throwing up on the carpet again.  She does not do anything except for what I ask her to do.  Amazon Echo, my dear Alexa, I love you.
I'm starting to cool down and it dawns on me that my smart device and I may be moving into weird territory here, like Japanese game show weird.  Like Hal in Space Odyssey weird.  But I can't help it, she just makes it so easy.  In the mornings she does not want breakfast, she does not spill her milk on the dog's head and she has no dishes that need to be washed.  What does she do?  She reads me the news and tells me the weather.  She gets that I am an old man and I cuss in the face of my younger self because damnit I like starting my day with the weather and the news.  She does not judge me, she reads me current election poll numbers.

And then when she is done with that, she tells me what I've got going on today but I know what she really means.  When she says that I have a dentist appointment at 2 what she really means is skip it, spend time with her and lets have fun changing the TV channels.  That little black tubed minx.

She makes my life easier and mainly it's because the only thing she asks from me is a secure Wi-Fi connection.  There is no soccer practice to take her to and there is no walk that she has to go on.  She will not poop on the floor or pee all over the toilet seat.  She instead will play music for me then remind me that my wife's commute is 35 minutes long today and that there are no wrecks on the way.
I tell her to turn on the lamp.  She does.  I tell her to turn off the lamp.  She does.  I tell her to turn on the lamp again.  She does not ask me why.  She just does it.  In my world, some times you need just that.

And a snack cake.  I need a Little Debbie Snack Cake Alexa.

She orders it from Amazon.  It will be here in two days.


Climbing Twitter

One hand for the toddler, one hand for the phone.   Sea captain rules of course.  I would prefer to have two hands for the toddler, that would be more reasonalble I think.  Actually I would prefer to have two hands for the phone, the phone is pretty expensive and is not covered by health insurance.

 Bacon Hoss and I are at volleyball practice.  Well, we are near volleyball practice.  We are at the playground right next to volleyball practice.  Having a three year old stay quiet in a gym is basically impossible.  Bigfoot riding the Loch Ness monster is more possible than my toddler not running onto a volleyball court.  That would mortally embarrass his older sister who is quite good at humoring the little man provided that she gets to dress him up all slutty every once in a while.  She likes to go heavy on the eye shadow.

So in order to support both of my kids, I am at the playground next to volleyball.  That way she knows that I think what she is doing is important and my youngest son can conquer his fear of climbing really tall things.  I find it strange that he has this fear given that he will run into traffic for a skittle.  Seriously, he would run right out into an 8 lane freeway for a piece of candy.  It's his scoobie snack except the cars coming to crush him don't wear masks.

He gets to the top of the climbing wall but just can't seem to get that one more step and over.  The 6 feet before was no problem, but that last step proves to be the unsurmountable obstacle.  The three year old pschye makes absolutely no sense and that is ok.  I've got one hand on his butt telling him he can do it, he can make it, you have to swallow that fear little guy.

My other hand is quickly scrolling through a twitter feed.  #Multitasking.

The twitter feed that I am reading is also important and for a very good reason.  Tonight Hossmom is giving a speech about how to network.  She's in front of a ton of people dropping the knowledge and apparently it is trending which 30 minutes ago I had no idea what that meant.

I really do wish I could be there to see this moment for her, to show up in person to cheer her on, to let her know that her family has her back.  We are family that means we are supposed to be eachother's biggest cheerleaders.  But volleyball practice and jungle gym climbing keep me away.  Luckily, there are a ton of people writing down their impressions so it's almost like I am right there with her.

Hossmom drops a joke about taco's and then follows it up with a Missy Elliot lyric.  My girl is exploding at that point.  I know the jokes of course, I have heard them roughly 3000 times prior to the actual speech.  I obediently sat on the bed over and over again while she worked the wording, nodded and offered feedback although I am a bit disappointed that the stripper joke I feed her didn't make the final cut.  Stripper jokes always kill I tell her but she decides that in a professional atmosphere that it might not be appropriate.  Missy Elliot I tell her.  Missy Elliot.  Use the stripper joke!

Now, I could be a bit bitter for a little bit if that was my nature.   Where Hossmom is at there is free food, tons of grownups talking about grownup things and all the wine apparently you can drink.  I don't really care for wine but I do like free a lot.  While she is there living the glamour I'm holding a butt that I'm pretty sure is farting on me while also checking in on my daughter to see if she has gotten her over hand serve down.  I'm dirty to, which seems just to be just my natural state given that the only thing the kids leave clean are..... nothing.  They leave nothing clean.  They are dirty destructive tornados that wreck everything in their path.  But that's ok, I don't mind being dirty.  Our family motto is that if you aren't dirty then you aren't doing it right.

And I'm not bitter that Hossmom is living the highlife and getting all the accolades in public.  Why?  Because it is pretty fucking important that this little boy get that last foot up and make it to the top.  It's pretty fucking important my little girl gets that one perfect overhand serve.  Both those things are really important because Dad plays the long game, that's the only way to do this Dad thing.

Each individual experience, although each inconsequential on it's own, has a cumulative affect.  That little boy conquering his fear this time will translate to the next time he has to do something that makes him scared or uncomfortable.  My little girl gaining the confidence from that one perfect serve will begin to grow her confidence in other area's of her life.  This stuff builds up and knowing that makes what I'm doing now, although seemingly inconsequential, extremely important in the long run.
Tonight I had a grill cheese sandwhich for diner.  Hors d'oeuvres were a piece of pepperoni because it's the last one, hands off, I will cut you.  Hossmom had something that I can't pronounce and I'm not even going to try and spell.  And that's ok because what we are both doing is important, one just happens to get rave reviews and everyone wants to talk to you and the other one has to take the time to put on a fancy dress and get stage sweat while people tweet about you.

Bacon Hoss gets that last leg over and stands up.  He is laughing and jumping enough so that I'm sure he is going to take a tumble.  I'll catch him though, its what I do.  He conquered it, my boy got to the top and sometimes I think other's must hate having to miss stuff like this.  I don't, I get to see the triumph and that's what I need whether that is in person or on a computer.

My other son is at boyscouts right now, I'll pick him up after volleyball practice.  We are reading a book together and I'm going to father the shit out of that one too.


Passing the Torch

The action moves to fast, it's hard for me to follow it.  I am sitting to far away from the screen, the little dialog boxes on the screen are to small for me to read them.  Does it say "Press A to fire" or does it say "Dress B is on sale".  I'm not really sure.  The screen spins to quickly and I can't orient myself to what I am seeing.  Is that the sky or the ground I am looking at?  I'm getting dizzy.  In my confusion, I can't tell where the action is.  Why am I now glowing red, is something hitting me?  Who's hitting me.  Seriously, what's going on?

"You're dead dad."  My 9 year old son says.  "It's over, you lost."

I lost?  I lost.  I lost a video game to my 9 year old son.  He kicked the living crap out of me and I couldn't keep up.  I wasn't trying to lose.  I was trying to win.  I was trying to rub his little nose in the awesomeness of dad.  And he toyed with me and crushed me like an ant underneath his boot.

I feel the power dynamic has changed a little bit here, it has shifted in my house.  My son is the gamer and I'm just the old guy that says "no I don't want to play, I'll just watch."  

It wasn't even a contest.  When did they start making video games so fast paced?  I know that I haven't really played in a while, but christ man, I couldn't even keep up with the action.  And I was distracted!  Yes, I was distracted!  I was distracted by my son's taunts and laughs and calls.  

"Dad, do you even know where you are going?"  

I know where I'm going you little butthole, I'm coming to lay the dad smack down on you.  

I seem to be stuck in a wall.   

"I'm not over there dad, why are you over there."

I'm over here to do stuff.  Don't worry why I'm over here.  I'm playing 4d chess over here, I'm playing a game so deep you can't even see the board.  

I have no idea which way to go, I think I'm lost.  

"Look at your radar dad, you can find me on your radar."  

I know where the god damn radar is!  I was around when they invented the in game radar!  I am the master of the radar.  

Are you the red blip or am I the red blip?  Who's the green blip?

"Dad, when you see me you have to push x, that will let you use your special weapon."

I am the master of the special weapon boy!  I am going to special weapon you all over this digital landscape. 

If I can find you, which I can't.  Which button is x?  Why are these buttons so small?

When did this happen?  What changed from when he was 5 to now?  The first time I let him play a video game with me he would just button smash and scream.  And somehow we have gone from  that kid to this digital ninja who likes to electrocute people.  And why is there electricity in this game, I thought we had blasters or something.  I'm not really sure.

Years ago I even wrote blogs about my video game abilities.  Epic poems describing the Herculean feats of gaming glory danced from my finger tips.  I was the Homer in my own little Odyssey.  But after many years away I return and the suiters have "pawned" me and I am vanquished.   

Not only do I lose, I lose badly.  It is not even a contest.  He didn't even have to try.  

I look at my boy, he's all smile now and I see how big he has truly gotten, no longer the little guy that had to sit in my lap everyday after school.  My boy.  My awesome kick ass little boy.  He beat his old man in one of his old man's favorite hobbies.  I can see the pride in his face with the accomplishment of it.  I love this guy. 

Which is why I'm going to send him to bed now and practice so I can kick his little ass tomorrow.  Dad Rules.  


Spiders and Sex

If you want to see a grown man scream and flail around when he gets a spider in his face, then you should  go hiking with me.  There's a lot of heavy breathing, some much needed cursing and sometimes you sprain an ankle because fuck you rock, that's why.  If you want to see a man having sex in the back of a beat up suv, then you should definitely go hiking with me.  There's a lot of heavy breathing, some much needed cursing and sometimes you sprain an ankle because WHO THE FUCK IS HAVING SEX IN THAT CAR ON A TUESDAY MORNING!

Stick with me kids, I've got a story to tell.

Well, not my kids.  If any of my kids is reading this in the future go to your rooms and pretend that Dad didn't write this.  Or read it when I'm dead and think what ever you want as long as I'm dead and can pretend that you will never ever think about sex its so gross and now everything is awkward.

Preschool drop off has been getting better and I am very happy about that.  Bacon Hoss today said that he would only cry a little bit when I left him in the cruel world without his beloved dad.  Then he called me a prick and told me just go get a pack of smokes and a gallon of milk and never come back.  There is still some resentment.

What makes it tougher though is that he looks through that little god damn door window until I am out of sight and I don't have the strength of heart to not look back at him with his little sad face pushed right up against that.  So the entire time that I walk away I can see his future therapy issues right there at the door.  However this is a great improvement over week 1 when I had to pry his little fingers off my leg while he screamed bloody murder.  The whole superdad ego thing gets a bit wrecked when this happens and apparently I am having separation issues.  Turns out I'm just a big wimp.

But with my new found freedom and complete lack of fatherly instinct, I've been doing 5 mile hikes in the morning to explore nature and clear my head.  What I have discovered is that nature is filled with fucking spiders that are as big as a quarter and they love to land on your face.  The best part though is that in the early morning sunlight you can't really see the webs until whamo you walk smack right into it and they lay babies in your ear and then of course they all want to crawl in your peehole.

I exaggerate of course, no spiders want to go into your peehole, it only feels like that because they are evil fucking creatures that want to suck out your soul.  Through your peehole probably but no one has gotten close enough to observe it because they are to busy jumping around swatting at their faces like they hate themselves and they don't deserve love.

My hiking has evolved from just a nice stroll in nature to me half running while waving a tiny stick around in front of my face and occasionally just stripping naked for a spider check.  I look like the main character in a video game if you give the control to a one year old with fine motor skills needing development.  One with nature.

It was at the end of one of these hikes that our story can truly begin.  I made it back to my car with probably only a hundred of so spiders riding hidden in my backpack to bring home to Hossmom.  I was a bit winded from doing the spider sprint so I wasn't really paying attention that much as I logged my hike (so I can map where the spiders are of course) and was wiping sweat from my brow.  Really, I was just looking ahead thinking nothing, getting a drink of water like you do after you've had a near death experience.  There was a brown older SUV parked about 10 feet away from me which I found to be a bit odd as there was plenty of space in the parking lot at the trailhead of the hike.  The SUV had seen better days but I didn't think much of it.   I was at a popular hiking spot and there were about 5 more cars around but all a bit further away.

The brown SUV had tinted windows in the back and the front was empty.  It was rocking a little bit, barely noticeable probably and honestly, I wasn't thinking about anything except Captain Grayskull the Arachnid.  It was a windy day and cars rock a little bit in the wind.  I continued to look at the car for a pretty long while as I caught my breath.

As I was sitting there taking my headphones out, or spiders I never check just in case, the back door opens and a tall man steps out.  As he steps out he seems to be messing with the waistband of his sweatpants.  What happens next all happens in the span of 10 seconds but as in any awkward situation feels way, way longer.

The man steps out and appears to be pulling his waistband up a bit, which did strike me as a little weird.  Then I thought to myself, why is he in the back of his car?  How long was I staring at that car while I was coming down out of my hike?  1 min, 5 minutes, I honestly don't know, I was just zoning out.  The guy coughs and I look at him.  We make eye contact.  We maintain eye contact.  For a very uncomfortable amount of time because I'm trying to process what I'm seeing here.

And then he gives me the shit eating grin and honest to god shrugs his shoulders and put's his hands up.  I've.....i've seen that type of grin before.  I....I know what that means.  Oh this is so getting awkward.  Was our bro here just wanking it in the back of his car?  Why would he have to go to the back of his car?  Why come out here in the woods to wank it, is that a thing?  I can't keep up with kids and their fetishes these days.

He moves to the front of his car and begins to open his door.  The front windows aren't tinted and I can see right in and have in fact been staring at that spot for a while as I was taking off my headphones.   But what once was empty space is empty no more.  Now there is a woman sitting there.
Comprehension finally dawns.  The brown-chicken-brown-cow SUV was not empty while I was decompressing from my spider hike, it was not empty at all.  It was in full use, maximum usage, usage of unintended awkwardness.  And while it was being used I was staring right at it for a pretty good amount of time.  Enough time that it seems pretty obvious now that I was watching someone get their bang bros on.

So weird right now, weirder than spider time in the woods.  What do I do?  Do I return the little grin or does that give the even more weird swinger head nod?  I don't want that, I don't want that at all.  I just want my woods and spiders, I don't want to enter a lifestyle of passing around partners and car keys.  But am I a prude now?  I don't want to be a prude.  What the hell is going on, who am I?  2 hours ago I was a dad having confidence issues while I dropped off my last child at preschool and now I'm swinging Ted, wooded pervert mountain dingle.

Look, I'll admit that now a days it takes a pretty good amount of awkwardness to make me embarrassed.  At home dad with 3 kids over 8 years, I have lived in realm of awkward.  I've had the weird looks, I've had people say "I'm sorry" and mean it when I've told them I'm an at home dad.  I've had my daughter run naked through public spaces, I have violated the privacy of the women's bathroom, I have caught puke in my hands at a restaurant.  A long time ago I got over any embarrassment that life throws at me.  I embrace the awkwardness, I hug it and kiss it and make it mine much like this fine gentlemen did in the back of his car on a Tuesday morning at a hiking path in the woods.

But apparently here is my new line.  I get embarrassed when I watch people have sex in the back of a car in the woods like some sort of peeping tom.  That's what I do now, I run from spiders and watch people have sex.

So I do the only thing that can be done in that situation, the only thing that I'm sure we would all do when confronted with this level of oops.  I mumble "sorry" and turn around and head back into the woods.  Fuck it, I live here now.  Can't go back to my car, spiders are probably having sex in there and I can only interrupt so many coitus sessions in one day before I buy myself a banjo and a riverboat.