Monday, August 14, 2006
My children have always maintained that I need a minimum of two weeks – preferably four – as a vacation. They say that it takes the first 5 days of my vacation before I’m absolutely convinced that it’s okay with God that I’m not working. It takes the next five days for me to finally relax.
I have discovered that they are absolutely correct. And, very, very wise.
If you haven’t already guessed by the paucity of my posting, I’ve really begun my vacation – sleeping late, not writing a whole lot, reading TONS, and picking up little things on the beach, like broken sea shells, and adding them to my collection for consideration.
Like the above picture. It is the cover for the spare tire on a jeep I’ve seen around town. I finally took out the camera on my cell phone and snapped a picture of it.
It seems like such a wonderful message – an important reminder in the midst of newspaper headlines that scream about war and poverty and disease.
I’m thinking that if more churches had messages like that in front of the church, we might actually interest some folk to make their way in to visit us.
Instead of the code language recognized only by the cognoscenti: “Sunday Services 8 AM Rite I, 10 AM, Rite II” what if our sign simply said:
“Life is good.”
Or, “God’s love is unconditional.”
Or, “The Episcopal Church: It’s a come as you are party.”
Maybe we’d get a few more folk who’d wander in through those imposing red doors.
A few more sea shells of observation:
Music: It may just be what catches my attention, but the music blaring from the car radios is decidedly retro this summer. Instead of rap music, I’m hearing lots of the Beach Boys (“Ba-Ba-Ba-Ba-Baberann”), The Tempations (“My Girl”), The Beatles (“She Loves You, Ya, Ya, Ya”), Sam and Dave (“Hold On, I’m Comin’), Elvis (“You Ain’t Nothing But a Hound Dog”), and a whole lot of other stuff that was popular when I was in high school and in the midst of the endless days of summer.
I’m not certain what this means, and I’m afraid to speculate. Let’s just leave this little sea shell on the shelf for now and come back to it another time. Or, not.
Bathing Suits: There are still two basic styles for women, one- piece and two-piece, but the variations are amazing. There are one-piece suits that are so skimpy they leave nothing to the imagination. Absolutely. Nothing. It’s one piece of very thin cloth and God only knows how it stays on the body, and S/he ain’t saying.
There are the one-piece suits with the neckline that plunges and the leg line that soars, exposing the exact place where the leg actually attaches itself into the hip socket – not exactly the most flattering part of the body, in my estimation, but I suppose beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
Finally, there’s what my partner calls the ‘old lady’ suits – you know: the ones with the wild print and the demure skirt that is “flattering for the fuller figure.” I mean really, who is kidding whom? A bathing suit is a bathing suit – it’s not supposed to cover up too much – and if your figure is ‘fuller’ well, ain’t no bathing suit gonna be too ‘flattering.’ Skirt or no skirt.
Two-piece suits come in the same variety – camisole and bikini pants, skimpy bikini, and thong. I don’t think I’ve ever been more envious than watching an 18 year old body walk by in a skimpy bikini or a thong – not a scintilla of evidence of a stretch mark or cellulite – eating an extra large container of Thrasher’s French Fries. It’s all I can do not to wrestle her to the sand and steal her French Fries.
Fair’s fair. If I can’t have her body, she can’t have French Fries.
Don’t try to unpack the logic of that. You could hurt yourself trying.
Men seem to have a variation on the same two styles they have in under ware: boxer or brief. The boxers are mostly very, very baggy and the briefs are very, very . . . oh, my goodness gracious!
Men who obviously spend time in the gym look good in either. It’s the Canadian and European men who wear the Speedo suits who really shouldn’t. Too little time in the gym combined with lifting way too many brewski’s results in a “bay window” effect to the abdominal area that is not, shall we say, esthetically pleasing. What’s really remarkable is that they seem not to care – what I or anyone else thinks.
Come to think of it, it’s the “more mature, fuller figure” Canadian and European women in the skimpy bikinis and thongs who really shouldn’t, either, but they do – and with great panache. Truth be told I think I’m more envious of the fuller-figure with panache than the well-toned bodies with the large container of French Fries.
Tee-Shirts: I have seen some that have made me laugh right out loud. Some favorites:
“I wish I could just quit you!” (The famous line from Broke Back Mountain)
“Don’t make me send out the flying monkeys” (quote: The Wicked Witch of the West)
01 20 09 (Bush’s Last Day in Office)
“Vegetarian” is Native American for “lousy hunter.”
“Sorry I missed church on Sunday, Mom, but I was attending a Wiccan, Lesbian, New Age, Nude Good Vibe Circle.” (Talk about pushing every mother’s button.)
“Get Real! Like Jesus would ever own a gun and vote Republican.”
There are others I simply wouldn’t print here, but my all-time favorite is this:
“End Gay Oppression: Spay and neuter all Fundamentalists.”
Life is good.