Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Happy Birthday

Well, it's birthday time again. I prefer to celebrate my own birthday in the way of men, which means I'll go target shooting followed by a late lunch, said lunch to include drinking more than I should. When I'm happily half in the bag I'll go pat Main Lady on the ass and see if I get lucky.

Main Lady's birthday is arriving with the speed of a slow freight passing through a railroad yard. Main Lady's mom, the Centenarian, has her birthday the same week as Main Lady, which is convenient. A large party is planned involving both birthday girls, along with Flopsy, Mopsy and Cottontail. QB1 may or may not be in attendance, but you can just bet your last dollar against a bottle of Thunderbird wine that yours truly, Mad Jack, will be impressed into service as a combination emcee, official party chauffeur, dance partner to Centenarian and Stepin Fetchit to everyone else. And, since Main Lady screwed her knee up three days ago to the point where her leg won't bend, this will be a solo act on my part. But the fun doesn't stop here, oh no. Since the three little darlings will be in town at the same time, Flopsy will forget to take her medicine (Lithium? Clozapine? who knows.) and in the name of being helpful to Main Lady will start carping to the other two about 'helping mama' until Cottontail loses her temper and snaps off a hot retort, thus giving Flopsy the excuse she needs to go completely around whatever strange bend lies ahead of her in the river of life mental health, so to speak. Don't ask me how any of this will be my fault, because I can't tell you. I just know that somehow this inevitable flare up will be attributed to my mother's favorite son, and that's that.

I was out buying birthday cards today. I bought several romantic cards for Main Lady along with a small present or two that I think she'll enjoy. I also bought cards for the Centenarian, which is easy to do. Just pick out one religious card and one 'special person' card, and that's a done deal. The thing is, there is no category for the final birthday person: Ding Bat.

About the same time Centenarian and her Man (Main Lady's father, now long deceased) discovered gin, dancing and whoopee two little girls showed up. One of these grew up to be a beautiful, talented and kindhearted licensed clinical psychologist, Main Lady. The other one is a spiteful, vindictive little twist whom I will henceforth refer to as Ding Bat. Ding Bat married a beltway lawyer whose sole claim to fame is that he skipped town right ahead of a host of legal papers having to do with a little mix up now known as the Watergate scandal. (No, I'm not kidding. Yes, I'm perfectly serious. No, I haven't been drinking. Yet.) I will refer to this corpulent bottom feeder as DC Law. Being retired, DC Law does little more than surf the Internet in search of new porn, play golf and suck down gin. About a fifth a week, I'd guess. Eating and sleeping also hold a great deal of fascination for DC Law. In my mind, he and Ding Bat are well matched and deserve each other, although each time Ding Bat comes up from Florida to visit Centenarian I swear I wouldn't wish her on anyone.

The thing is, as I walk through the greeting card section of Anderson's General Store I note that the cards are divided into categories, and that there is no category for people whom you do not like, but for whom you must buy and deliver an appropriate birthday card conveying your best wishes for a - see, words are failing me here. My best wishes for Ding Bat involve a Florida canal and an alligator, or maybe a cement mixer and a construction site. Likely it would help if I explained that Ding Bat hates me with a passion, and has done so for years. One year at a large family party she actually convinced Main Lady that I'd threatened to shoot her if she ever came over to the house again. I never said any such thing, but I want you, the reader, to note the turn your mind took as you read that sentence. You didn't think, 'How incredibly foolish.' or 'What an outrageous lie!'. You were thinking, 'Jeez, Mad Jack, you know there's laws against that kind of thing, and you being a gun owner and all... '. Fortunately for me Flopsy, Mopsy and Cottontail all saw through the story and the supporting Shaniqua theater (howling like the damned in the ladies rest room) and told her to get over herself. Doubly fortunate, the other ladies at the party believed the three little darlings instead of Ding Bat. Any men at the party heard about the entire affair days later and predictably shrugged the whole thing off as being none of their damned business. Which, by the way, is roughly when I heard about the story as well. I had no idea of what was going on until the entire business was finished and the rumors had died the death. Amazing, right?

Still, that leaves a gaping hole in the greeting card section. There are card categories for Birthday, Religious; Birthday, Romantic; Birthday, Hers; Birthday, His;  Birthday, Other; even Birthday, Dog. None for Birthday, Someone Who Hates You; Birthday, Mandatory; Birthday, Obligatory;  Birthday, Obligatory, Person You Hate But Can't Say So. Nor is there one for Birthday, Blood Sucking Ex-Wife or Birthday, Cheating Ex-Husband. Maybe I should go into the greeting card business. You think?


flask said...

yes, you should go into the greeting card business.

i know a guy.

Capt. Schmoe said...

Are you sure Dingbat isn't a clairvoyant? I'm just askin'

Mad Jack said...

You know Schmoe, you can make jokes all you like but there was this crazy church that Ding Bat and DC Law were going to where people were talking to their dead ancestors and such. When Main Lady took the whole circus South for a little vacation I got wind of the entertainment scheduled for Sunday morning and wanted to go along just to keep everything on the up and up.

I was left standing in the front yard.

Hooda Thunkit (Dave Zawodny) said...


Sounds like you're on to something with the missing card categories, in fact, I think that you'd be a natural.

Besides, Toledo needs a "Little Sadistic Card Shop." The regular card shops don't really fill the bill for me either. . .


Stephanie Lorée said...

Happy birthday! You could always buy a blank card and write your own, carefully crafted message.

If you do, scan and post the image. I'm sure your readers would delight in such antics, heaven knows I would.