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I’m a joker, I’m a tainter, I’m a laughing fainter

Ok, I must preface this entry with the fact that I have had a mysterious free-range organically grown headache for the last three days. I attribute it to the fact that I must be having an estrogen fiesta in my body and it’s hormonal, but nearly everyone at work has the exact same headache. It might still be hormonal, though, since I work with mostly women and women tend to unconsciously synchronize their estrus when they hang around each other a lot. I think it might be an evolved form of self-defense so they have enough spunk to defend themselves when their coworkers are having raging bouts of PMS, but maybe not.

Anywhoo, Esteban’s parents, Ward and June, wanted to go out to dinner with us to celebrate Esteban’s birthday and give him his birthday presents, which were a gift certificate to Barnes & Noble and a pair of Reeboks. I think I’ve mentioned before how June is terrified that we will walk barefoot through the snow because we’re too ignorant to purchase shoes or something. Actually, I kind of like it because I get a nice new pair of New Balance athletic shoes every six months (birthday in June and for Christmas). In Esteban’s case, however, he ends up with a glut of shoes because he tends to wear his shoes to death AND his birthday is in October and then he gets another new pair at Christmas, so somehow this confuses the whole cycle of shoe wearage.

So I got to the ‘rental’s house and they can’t decide where to go, so I hop on the phone and start dialing places I want to go since no one can make up their damned mind and instead passive-aggressively veto any suggestion made. Dad suggests that we could go to the Hick House (fyi: not it’s real name!), which is twenty miles south of their house, out in B.F.E. I call them, because, hey, they have pretty good food and sometimes they have a big buffet up with all you can eat Prime Rib and fried perch and the like. And people wonder how Wisconsin became the overweight state?

The Hick House won’t take reservations and they say they have a ten to fifteen minute wait, which in restaurant talk means twenty to twenty-five minutes. ‘Can we get a number now?’ I ask. ‘We’re five minutes away right now.’ The hostess wavered and then said ‘Ok, your number is 40.’

This was a lie on my part. I figured that we were about seventeen minutes away in reality, but if I would have said ‘We’re seventeen minutes away’, the hostess would have countered with her original lie of a ‘ten to fifteen minute wait’ and then told us to get a number at the door. This was a pretty harmless lie, in actuality. If they really did only have a ten to fifteen minute way (and let me reiterate that these local traditional supperclubs are notorious for lying through their teeth about wait times because they design time for you to sit in the bar and get drunk on old-fashioneds, which is a local drink that apparently the rest of the country has no clue about, but contains a mixture of brandy, 7-up, something brown with sugar in it, and a cherry and it is a great thing) then they’d give our table to some drunken fool who’d been waiting for thirty minutes and when we got there, we’d have to get a new number anyway and be in the same circumstance as if I hadn’t lied. Ok, maybe the hostess would be a little mad because someone had seen through her diabolical scheme but I’m certain that she’d get over it. Esteban’s parents, however, were not so certain. They wanted to go in and peek at the hostess’ list FIRST, to see if Number 40 had been called and if it had already been called, then register under a false name, which is a lesser offense than lying about the drive time, I guess. I offered to let them tell the waitress that I was a habitual liar who hadn’t taken my medication.

We hopped into Ward and June’s minivan, which they have purchased in the hope of gaining many many grandchildren with which to fill it, and then Ward proceeded to head north. North??? To a place which was south? But apparently, he wanted to get on the highway from the east side of town rather than go through town to hook up which was fifteen miles closer to our target. And then he proceeded to drive like an old man because June was sitting next to him, alternately monitoring the speed and admonishing us for not going to the library and checking out books rather than spending so much money purchasing them. At one point, Esteban wanted to stop his mother’s tirade, so he looked at me and said, ‘Did you blow ass?’ and I said ‘No, he who smelt it must have dealt it.’ But Esteban’s goal had been met because June was already saying, ‘You couldn’t have put that more delicately than that? You have to say ‘blow ass’?’

Parents. So predictable.

Thirty minutes later, we got there. By this time, June was positively hyper that I had lied about a five-minute drive time. I just went up to the hostess table and said ‘Number 40?’ and she said ‘Table 26′ Go! Go!’ which apparently meant that our number had been called five minutes ago.

We sat down. A waitress brought us drinks and menus. We ordered and then ate salad. All within five minutes of arriving. You just can’t beat lying to hostess’, folks. It doesn’t get any better than that. We all ordered fish, which is pretty much expected in this predominately Catholic area, but none of us are Catholic. Then we went back to Ward and June’s house. There we sat at their snack bar and talked.

June gave me a huge chocolate bar for Halloween and also had made my little brother Jonathon a bag full of candy. It was so big, she had to tape the bag shut, so I commented that because she taped the bag shut, I wouldn’t be able to steal the Vanilla Tootsie Rolls out of his bag. She then set out to dig the Vanilla Tootsie Rolls out of her Halloween Bowl, which was already set up and waiting for Wednesday. She’s so anal retentive that I imagine if she walks naked by something, small objects get sucked involuntarily into her rectum.

Then someone at the table farted. I immediately looked shocked at Esteban because he has no problem with letting go in front of his parents. He said ‘Hey, don’t look at me!! That wasn’t me!’ which is what he always says, whether he is the guilty party or not.

I looked at Ward, as if to say ‘Can you believe your son?’ but Ward had the guiltiest look on his face. He raised his eyebrows in apology and shrugged his shoulders and he looked just like a basset hound, all sad and sorrowful. All three of us broke out laughing while June, with her head stuck in her huge Halloween candy dish, kept saying ‘What? What?’

Then it seemed like a lot of time had passed and all was warm and peaceful. The next thing I heard was June screeching ‘Weetabix! You’re scaring me!’ and Esteban saying ‘Get up!’

I realized I was on the floor, having been on a barstool just a second ago. Actually, it had been more like five seconds ago and apparently I had been laughing so hard that I went from a laughing high to passed out. And I hit my head on Esteban’s barstool when I fell.

Luckily for me, Tootsie Rolls stick to your teeth, because I still had a hunk of Vanilla Tootsie Roll in my mouth. I got back up on the barstool and continued to laugh at Ward’s Guilty fart. June proceeded to elevate the event in her head, claiming that I had a seizure and started to twitch. Esteban countered with the fact that my body had jerked when I hit my head but that was it. Ward and I just kept cracking up over the fart.

I’m a fainter. I have been since I was eighteen. The first time I ever fainted, it was from lack of food and I fainted through a shower door. The next time, I had gotten ‘blood poisoning’ from a blister and was in the emergency room, getting a vein poked for intravenous antibiotics. Another time, I was giving blood and out I went’ although that was about four months after the first time, so I think my body freaked out with similar circumstances to the previous ‘blood poisoning’ incident. The last three times have been laughing high related’ generally laughing about farts or poop. I’m an anal-related fainter, I suppose.

It’s all very Victorian. I think June is planning to buy some Smelling Salts.

Them farts, though, they’re damn funny.

So that’s why my head hurt last night. Thanks, Roadie Pig for your thoughtful well-wishes in the guest book. It’s feeling much better now, after several Advil. I’m glad I was out when I actually hit it because that would have sucked. But actually, it was so funny; I don’t think I’d mind a go on that carnival ride again. It was fucking hilarious. I guess you had to be there.

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