Merry Christmas, Here’s a Dead Baby

When I was ten years old my father quit his job at a chocolate company and started working as a marketing manager for a business which sold tea. This meant two things; our house would no longer be filled to the brim with delightful cocoa related goods- instead my father insisted on stocking our cupboards with old person drinks because what child guzzles Earl Grey? The second thing was that my tenuous grasp on any semblance of popularity from living in a house filled with candy bars was gone.

Life went on and before I knew it, Christmas was upon us. Previous years my sister and I had been packed in our snow suits and shuttled to the chocolate company’s Christmas party. The fete not only featured Santa Claus but the giant allergen that was the company’s mascot as well. Diana and I would take turns standing next to the costumed people for pictures. This would be followed by a draw in which every child was given a gift then we would leave with a loot bag as large as ourselves after being stuffed with candy, brownies and cake. In essence the chocolate company’s Christmas party was every child’s vision of heaven. I used to picture going there after I died.

This year of course there would be no company party, not for the children in my family at least. My mother and father dressed to the nines early in December and left my sister and me at home with a babysitter. The next night my mother presented Diana and I with a box. “It’s from the tea company’s Christmas party, your Dad said we should bring it home to open as a family.”

It wasn’t a garbage bag full of sugar but it was something. Furthermore after initially questioning the wisdom of his career move I had been buoyed up by a phone call my mother had made to me while on a business trip with my father two months previously.

“Guess where I am girls?” she cried ecstatically into the phone. Sitting at home with our grandparents Diana and I had a vague notion that our Mom and Dad were very far away but not exactly sure where.

“Scotland?” we said in unison.

“No! I’m in the bathroom!”

“Um” was our confused and faintly grossed out response.

“The bathroom in the hotel room is as large as our bedroom at home and there is a phone by the tub!” My mother’s excitement was contagious and I began to forgive my father for leaving his lucrative candy coated job.

As Diana and I unwrapped the small package I could tell we were both thinking of the enormous hotel bathroom with a telephone in it. If this new company had provided something as fabulous as that for the employee’s families on business what sort of wonders had they packed into this little box?

It was a dead baby. Or to be more specific; half a dead baby. The lower half of the infant was a ceramic bell while the upper half was dressed in what looked like a nubby, hooded ceramic jacket. Without a doubt, the gift was the creepiest, most homely Christmas ornament I had ever seen. The entire tchotchke was beige coloured except for the eyes which were painted blue, giving it the appearance that someone had dressed the baby crossed bell in a coat then thrown it in a snowbank to freeze to death. “Well, that’s um, nice.” said my mother looking at the ornament skeptically. The baby’s eyes stared back, sinister and unblinking.

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It likes to sing a song at night. It goes like this, “My cold, ghostly eyes are watching you”. (Photo Credit : The Great Unwashed)

Without looking at my sister, I knew what she was thinking “I would have preferred a bag of chocolate.”

My father and I aren’t able to celebrate Christmas together this year, so all of my gifts arrived in a large Purolator box. In addition to the presents, my Dad also decided that I would enjoy this bizarre ornament from my childhood because he knows that there is nothing I love more in the world than a good story. So Merry Christmas my Unwashed public, may each and every one of you receive a dead baby of your own.

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Travesty Tuesdays : The Professional Edition

The problem with being a writer is that people assume you can write. Which I can. Sort of. Actually not really. If you look around WordPress you will realize that I don’t have a Bachelors degree in English and it shows. Also, more often than not, I understand grammar don’t.

This fact doesn’t prevent friends and family from asking me to compose letters and whatnot for them. The most recent request came from my young cousin Candy, who has a stripper name and a heart of gold. Ostensibly a potential employer wants a letter of recommendation. While I am the first person to recommend Candy and her work, I’m not sure I should be the person to do it. Nonetheless I tried.

Dear Super Ballin’ Employer from our Country’s Capital,

What’s up yo? I’m fine, thanks for enquiring. News traveled down the pipeline that your company has a position open. My cousin totally wants it. Like wants it wants it. Like a chubby kid wants cake at fat camp. Only unlike the overly muscular fat camp directors, you should give Candy her heart’s desire. But not the fat kid, give him more time on a treadmill, not the job.

Candy is super awesome amazeballs. Her work ethic is second to none. She would work in her sleep if she could. In addition, Candy is knowledgeable about her field. Or at least I think she is. What she does is very technical so I kind of get lost midway through her explanations but judging by the length of them, I can say the kid knows her stuff.

On top of being really hardworking and educated, Candy is short, this doesn’t sound like a selling point until your company moves or downsizes and you need to stick someone in the tiny corner cubicle. Or if you fly her somewhere and want to use the legroom to transport equipment- not only would Candy be happy to squish herself into a ball to create more space, she wasn’t going to need that legroom to begin with.

So basically Candy is great. You probably shouldn’t even bother interviewing her just call her up and say “Your cousin convinced us, here’s the job and this is the list of benefits we added because you rock”. If you have any further questions don’t call my cell, it has a strange greeting on the voicemail saying you can only leave a message if you are on fire, so I wouldn’t want any of your more literally minded employees receiving burns on my account. You are totally welcome to email me though, but don’t expect me to respond, I’m giving you my professional email which I never check- sarahwritescreativethingshere@gmail.com .

 

Inscrutably yours,

 

The Great Unwashed

 

Message to Candy:

Is this what you meant kiddo when you asked for a letter? I gave it my best college try. I bet for sure you’ll be working and rolling in the sweet sweet cheddar in no time. No one can resist your dynamo combination of personality, brains and work ethic when it’s coupled with my writing.

Emily Post Couldn’t Have Said It Better Herself

I started a new job this past week. With new jobs comes training. Some of it was paperwork but part of the training included a self defense component. Hence the following conversation at Sula’s house.

The Great Unwashed in my bright and cheerful tone- “A giant man put me in a headlock today. And I got out!” The last sentence was said with a certain amount of pride.

Sula– “Did he smell nice?” said in a way that indicated that this was a reasonable follow up question.

The Great Unwashed– “Pardon?”

Sula– “If you are going to put a lady in your armpit, you should make sure there are no odors first.” This was stated in the same haughty manner that one might instruct someone where to put the oyster forks.

The oyster fork sits adjacent to the grapefruit spoon and one must always apply "Old Spice" before putting a co-worker in a half nelson. (Photo Credit : www.bexfield.co.uk)

The oyster fork sits adjacent to the grapefruit spoon and one must always apply “Old Spice” before putting a co-worker in a half nelson. (Photo Credit : http://www.bexfield.co.uk)

I burst out laughing because it never occurred to me to check for scents while my head was sandwiched between a large forearm and sturdy midsection.

So for my readers, if you are planning to attend the Unwashed Head Lock Cotillion you will need to wear deoderant.

Illicit Sugar and Job Confusion

Once upon a time, when I thought glitter glue was a necessary addition to all objects, my father worked for a company that made chocolate bars. Technically he was a marketing manager, but at seven years of age his job title was irrelevant.

Black Chocolate in Japan

The cupboard contents of my childhood home. (Photo credit: gullevek)

The more important part to my young mind and mouth was that this job resulted in every cupboard in our house being stocked with some type of delicious treat. Everyday my father was sent home with an edible good to sample and create a detailed description about. A man can only consume so much sugar before he begins to stash it with the coffee mugs, next to canned corn and behind the stand up mixer. As far as I was concerned this was the next best thing to being fathered by Santa Claus himself.

Life was not all rainbows and unicorns in my childhood home. Although we were surrounded by chocolate, my sister and I could not technically eat all of the chocolate. We had to ask permission. Nearly always the answer was “No”. However we discovered a loophole in the parental framework; what my parents did not know about, we could secretly consume.

Diana and I later parlayed this rule into the consumption of my parent’s old alcohol. As a teenager my sister spent an inordinate amount of time searching for dusty bottles of booze in our basement to decant into inconspicuous containers. Our crime was discovered eight years later when the house was being renovated and my mother was puzzled by a box of twenty cobweb covered bottles of hootch, each with only a couple of milliliters left. God bless my near teetotaling parents’ drinking habits.

I digress. In Canada the legal age that one may stay at home alone is ten. This was an excellent year for me as I discovered a fifteen pound box of abandoned chocolate chips next to a stack of two year old flyers advertising a new candy bar. I ate nearly a third of my bootleg bounty before sharing the news with my sister.

When I was twelve, my father changed jobs and began working for a tea company. Supposedly it was a better position but from my preadolescent point of view it was a step down. In my mind our family was probably one job change away from the poor house.

In high school, my father changed careers again, no longer was he concerned with the colour of tea or chocolate packaging however I never quite figured out what he did. To this day if asked I will answer “Um…..? He’s a banker? He works for a bank? He talks to a lot of people. Stocks?”

My dad has repeatedly attempted to explain his role but he always includes unnecessary technical details which confuse the issue. Once, Phillip my sister’s giant boy friend explained what he did, and everything made sense. Unfortunately then my father tried to elaborate on the topic and my understanding was lost.

Here’s what I know

  1. My father goes to work everyday
  2. He wears a suit
  3. He talks to a lot of people.

Based on this I like to assume that what he does is very important but it’s entirely possible that he could be a well dressed ice cream man.

My father's office. (Photo Credit: www.dreammakericecreamcarts.com)

My father’s office. (Photo Credit: http://www.dreammakericecreamcarts.com)

Travesty Tuesdays- What May Very Well Be Our Last Date Night In Public

This Travesty Tuesday isn’t so much a correspondence as a conversation. It occurred on Roscoe and my last date night. He claims that I’m grounded and not allowed to speak to normal people for two weeks. Especially not flustered young women with unwanted tilapia. Something about my new catchphrase being wildly inappropriate.

This post will make infinitely more sense and be much funnier if you’ve read “Protect Your Pecker: Pause Before Pill Popping”

Date– Last Thursday

Scene– Roscoe and I are out for a date at a local food place. Our server is new, however Roscoe and I are patient and don’t mind waiting or asking politely for things like cutlery. The two of us are happily chatting away, enjoying the lengthy European style dinner that our server’s inexperience has afforded us. The conversation is interrupted by the arrival of the food.

Various cutlery

Wildly over-rated. The under two crowd doesn’t even use them. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

~Our server carefully places pizza in front of me and fish in front of Roscoe~

Nervous Server– cheerfully, with a note of satisfaction over not dropping the food “There you go!”

Queue the Great Unwashed looking at Roscoe to see whether he’s going to say anything. It appears he isn’t.

The Great Unwashed – in an encouraging tone “Thank you! These do look wonderful, sadly they aren’t what we ordered. I wanted the pork and he ordered a hamburger”

Nervous, now Flustered Server– “Oh! I’m sorry. I’m so sorry, let me get those plates.”

~Flustered, blushing server reaches for the plates~

The Great Unwashed– in a reassuring tone “Don’t worry, it’s fine, no one lanced the peen.”

Nervous, now Bewildered Server– “What? I mean pardon?”

Roscoe to the Great Unwashed – “You HAVE to stop saying that. “

Roscoe to the Bewildered Server holding the ownerless plates in a mortified and apologetic tone – “I’m sorry, she means everything is fine.”

Personally I think it’s an overreaction, I mean no harm no foul, no peens were lanced. Regardless it appears as though for the next month our date nights will be Netflix movies on the couch.

*For those of you looking at your calendars, yes it is Friday. However I thought Wednesday was Tuesday and then our house was broken into by spirits from the great beyond on Wednesday night. Have no fear, they took nothing,

however they did leave the lid off the peanut butter. I can’t really blame them, who doesn’t love peanut butter?