November 2010: I walk into his bedroom and there's my pizza pan with half a deep dish pizza under his bed. I cooked that in October. What has he done?
May 1995: After screaming for what feels like hours, pa-pa is rather unresponsive to my wilding. Maybe he'll see it my way once I put some holes in these walls. Not long after that. Eh, what if I slam my toes in this drawer and start crying bloody murder? Yes, yes, good plan. Shortly thereafter. Okay, that really hurt. He really doesn't care. It's time to disembark for greener pastures. I can't get very far unless he thinks I'm asleep in bed. Twenty minutes of quietly assembling a dummy, I leave my home behind, jumping out the window. Literally 30 seconds later, my dad walks out the front door, grabs me, and asks where I think I'm going. "How did you know I left, you clever fox?" "Zach, you hid a board game box and a snake Beanie Baby under a white sheet. It was so much smaller than you, but I could also see through the sheet." Foiled.
January 2011: The old "sugar-under-the-bed" trick didn't attract ants as I thought.
June 2009: At John's birthday party, I do what's best. I sit down when no one's looking and ferociously stuff my hand into his family's candy jar. I can probably ransack a couple doz. Never seen these before, but they look like Andes mints yeah that's what these are. Okay okay, 10 deep. Mmmm, oh no. Something's wrong. Are they still wrapped? Are they wrapped in ear wax? I spit them out all over the floor. John walks in. "Why are you eating my candle!?" I yell back, "Why is it in the shape of candy served in a dish?!"
January 2004: I win 2nd place in the Science Fair for a project about how different temperatures of water affect bubbles longevity. I chose this project because I was fixated on the words "longevity" and "viscosity" since they were the easiest for me to understand in science class. This project existed simply because I started with "longevity", and then filled in the blanks for the rest of the title. I initially chose viscosity, but I wanted to race oil versus maple syrup and they weren't going to let me do that. They were happy that I didn't do another dinosaur diorama, though.
August 2001: My dad is so mad. A horseback rider was trekking through our backyard until they fell into the 5 foot hole I dug. You know, we were playing cards in there, reading, and stuff. The rider came up to our backdoor and yelled, "Hey, why would you disguise a 5 foot hole as a pile of palm fronds?" I see what they're saying. Maybe our cool new digs are closer to a treacherous booby trap than a place for 6th graders to claustrophobically hang out, but why is my backyard a highway for horses?
April 2013: First time at Tucson Tamale Company. I sit down with my new coworkers, only being in Tucson for a few weeks. My boss thinks my diet is sugar, broccoli, and chicken breast. Not wholly true, but it was a scary proportion of what I eat. I had just ordered some flavor of tamale based purely on recommendation. I had never seen one before. Next thing I know, I'm eating this corn husk thing. It's not really easy to get through. The outer part does not taste very good. I'd say it's close to inedible, even. Puzzled, I see that each table has a bin labeled "husks". Dang. I look around and see my coworker look away, so embarrassed by this experience I burdened on them.
April 2020: Laura and I didn't believe it. It had been weeks since the last sighting of toilet paper. The bathroom door was open and we could see our lifeblood spewed all about. Hank, the cat, had such an offensive huh-face. The very last of our toilet paper was shredded. Now, we're holding all that we left. It's a box of Kleenex.
February 2006: I come home and there's half a sausage balancing on the seat of my toilet. Wut.
April 2008: My dad is super pissed that we dug another 5 ft. hole in the backyard. We had a serious problem using deep holes and burning pumpkins as props in our school videos. I'm forced to fill it in until well after dark.
June 2009: There's seriously nothing to do. Sitting around my living room, six or so friends are watching movies. At least it's not another Freddy Kreuger movie. Do we play Risk again? No. Do we buy suits and go to the "mudwalk" and try to hitchhike after? Mmm. How many times can you go to Walmart at midnight in one summer? Then we get the idea. What if we dig a hole--just wait--then drag an extension cord to it? Oh no, there's more! It'll be just like Rocket Power, see? We'll put an Xbox in there and big screen TV! If we work for several days in the blistering heat, we can enjoy mere moments in the filthy sand with the palmetto bugs! This idea started to fade pretty fast, except for zealous support from John. "Guys, I'll make the 30 minutes drive before work to get this done! I'll dig at night. THIS is what we should do this summer!"
June 2014: Friday before the release of the Game of Thrones' season 4 finale, I'm invited to the premier watch party in Tucson among people that I know. Dishes should are required, and they should be thematic. How can I say know to "themes"? I'm the one who spent all his spending money on spider webs and fog machines. The problem is that I'm 21 episodes behind in Game of Thrones after giving up in the second season. There are only 48 hours until the airing. Thus, I spend every waking minute of the weekend fervently catching up, trying to relearn names, searching for a plate that'll make my friends pick their teeth with an arrow. I forget what I end up bringing, but it might've come from a cauldron or been a goblin reduction. Of course, there's not enough to catch up and do things like cook or take care of basic hygiene. So, the weekend is spent in filth and laze, but when I do have to move, the TV gets brought with me. I'm already an imposter as someone who wasn't agonizing between every Sunday. So, I need to impress these high-brow chaps by at least having basic knowledge of all the glossed-over characters. I mean, it'll all be freshest in my mind, right? I make it to the finish line by mere minutes, then I rush across town and make it over to Carlos's. When I arrive, a dozen folks are pondering each Medieval dish, probably because it could be their last. Lots of effort, lots of going HAM. Our most cannibalistic member brought sausages, simply because of a grotesque dismemberment scene. He protested that we should "not think about it" while eating, saying this precisely so that we think about it. Other dishes included boiled snails, fancy cremes, peasant grains, and whatever ruined dish I embarrassed myself with. We sit down, mostly bothered by our edible options, and start the show. Not five minutes in, it seems to the others that I've maybe not put in the effort required when my festive contribution turns out to be boxed cornmeal and I fail to name a single "Wildling".
August 2001: For my geography class, we're asked to draw examples of different geographic features. For "island", I start with a loose tracing of a TV remote. Seems pretty good. Next, I add vague coastal nooks and crannies, a lake or two--some spice. Feeling done, I go ahead and add three dozen countries, give them names, add their capitals and major cities. Totally complete with this assignment, I add historical backstories, weather patterns, descriptions of major regions. Moving on with my life, each country gets color coded like a typical political map to easily distinguish each country. Turning 30, I add a scale so that we know just how large this area is. It had taken me 9 hours to do this homework assignment, and mostly by candlelight because it was sweet. A few days later, I get my grade back. 0. "Based on size, this is probably a continent. There were also 19 more geographical features to draw."
December 2011: I've never been more angry. I just threw my controller against the wall, literally foaming at the mouth. Madden 2010 is a game not fit for those who think it should more closely represent reality. Andy just threw 13 Hail Maries in a row with the game's slowest quarterback, and no matter how many people stand 50 yards away under his pass, the receiver catches it and runs unabated to the end zone. We barely manage from brawling. This poor simulation starts my move from video games.
March 2019: After getting coffee one Saturday morning, I ask Laura if we can take a drive through the mountains. It'll be quick, I say, it's only about 20 miles round trip. Reluctantly, as she is busy with school, she agrees. The trip takes about 7 hours and we waste an entire day. The road is littered in WWI-sized craters all the way out past the mountains. Once we reach this fabled "Reddington" for which the road is named, it turns out to be roadless farmland, prolonging our journey. Not only were these inhibiting us, but the area was primarily used for people to blaze guns in peace. Constant ringing of fired shots had us looking both ways for potential death, and looking down into pot holes the Devil would be jealous of. Always fearing that going back "would be worse", it takes us 6 total hours to get to the interstate. Laura is stressed.
April 2018: My first manbun. Aww how sweet.
May 2016: Another office tradition start. On Fridays, Jason plays the Golden Girls theme song followed by an awful harmonica rendition of the Jurassic Park theme song. They do move in herds.
January 2004: Being the leader of a treehouse state is hard. Titania's only businesses sell palmetto swords and root maces. Corruption is rampant since anyone can just get more money by walking over to the mine and picking more up off the ground. The economy is stagnating since we caught our main importer of Hot Pockets cheating in cards. Food is limited to what can be microwaved or literal sand. I'm proposing to the masses an idea I know they'll be thrilled about. Since the first great days of this nation, we have had no underground culture, no place to make like Diglet and chill. A double-use hole, I propose! Not only can we sit in it for paintballing, but we can fill it with water to grow a stable fish population! Six weeks later, we have a total eyesore next to the nation's only manufactured structure. It hosts all kinds of algae and wasps, and we really learned our lesson about homebrew fisheries.
January 2010: There's a full can of Campbell's in a cup, as if it were to be ingested like water, under his bed. The room needed an air filter to undo the pollution. What has he done?
October 2002: My grandpa is a master funnel cakesman. I'm not sure of the details and there probably aren't any. I try my first funnel cake and am not sure how I feel. Returning home, I spend a whole Saturday playing Age of Empires against myself. It feels really good to be completely unchallenged and rule as an all-powerful autocrat. The next day, I become extremely ill. After several days of feeling very sick, it seems the only thing that it can possibly be is the funnel cake. My stomach starts to churn thinking about my new sensitivity to powdered sugar. Though I'm down with doughnuts, the deep-fried dough from the day of yester makes me quiver. I don't seem to get any better throughout the week. Trying to rack up small accomplishments through the lost week, I find a bag with sopping wet clothes just stuffed in a corner. It looks like the homebrew fishery and the clothes inside smell like it, too. Although this was surely the reason for my illness, I still get sick thinking about funnel cakes.
May 1994: Not yet 4, I realize that I have a long life ahead of being ovophobic.
February 2013: I walk into his bedroom and there's an entire disassembled motorcycle strewn about. What has he done?