This fucking sword! Matt and Kristen had to go along with impromptu decapitations and amputations for the rest of the evening, because you never knew when Chooch was going to slash you with a balloon sword in 100 degree weather. I kept hoping he would pop it off Henry’s beard. Chooch didn’t want to get publicly strangled by blue latex, so not once did he hit me with that stupid sword.
During our trek, we passed numerous stands where Boston Strong ribbons and memorabilia were being sold, and banners hung everywhere. It was super bittersweet. Part of me wanted to ask about where the recent bombings happened, but I didn’t want to be That Person. (Even though we all totally know that I am.)
“Aw, duuuude. The Bruins are totally gonna with the Cup tanight.” Totally what that guy was saying.
Matt asked if we were ready to eat dinner and I emphatically said yes but in lieu of food, I was actually salivating over the thought of an air-conditioned room and a cold glass of water. With ice cubes. Water with ice cubes! It was all I really wanted. Who knew I could ever want something so basic.
Every little eating establishment we passed, Chooch would say, “Can’t we just eat there?” and Kristen would tell him that place wasn’t good, or it was dumb, and I really appreciated that because he usually needs to hear this shit from other people. Otherwise, he will turn into an asshole because, “YOU GUYS NEVER GO WHERE I WANT TO GO!” and then the whole, “OMG OUR ENTIRE LIVES ARE PLANNED AROUND YOU SO STFU!” argument happens. I also appreciated it because it pretty much was always a stupid place he was pointing to. Get a life, Chooch.
I think this was where Matt got us LOST! Look at Henry’s expression. I’m sure he’s thinking about how, if he were leading us, he’d never get us lost, and I really wish he would have said that out loud so I could have jabbed him in the face with Chooch’s stupid sword while recounting the multiple times he led us astray in Salem — only a few hours ago! Get fucked with your stupid stripes, Hank.
Meanwhile, Chooch witnessed a real life interaction between two native Bostonians when a shop owner ran into a mailman he knew and the two began jovially shouting salutations and niceties across traffic. Literally, things like, “HOW’S THE WIFE, PALLY?” It was so stereotypical that part of me wondered if a TV show was being filmed.
Chooch lapped all of this up and then when it was over, he whispered in awe, “It was just like Alyson said!” That may have been the highlight of Boston for him.
“Seriously, are we walking back to Pittsburgh? Because it feels like it.” In the backround, Matt consults his phone for directions.
Heat and all, I really enjoyed the walk, but that’s not to say I wasn’t internally having a Fuck Yes dance party when we arrived at Faneuil Hall, which I still can’t pronounce even though Kristen repeated it for me like 87 times and I had to Google the spelling of it just now even though it’s right there on that Boston Strong banner in the above picture.
We melted, dripped and oozed inside the door to McCormick & Schmick’s where Matt and Kristen spoiled us with a lovely, super-filling dinner. When our waiter dropped off some bread for us, I was half-tempted to use a slice to soak up the oily sheath of humidity that was making my face look like the finest glazed ham up in that piece. And thank god the waiter was so overzealous with his water-pourin’, because I think we all had chugged the shit out of our glasses. I so badly wanted to nuzzle the glass and all of its sweet, COLD condensation against my neck.
In case you didn’t know, it was approximately the same temperature as the inside of a hippo suit at a Tunisian sex camp during Furry Porn Week out there in Boston. (Although, it’s been awhile since my last trip to Tunisia so I’m basing this off memory.) Thankfully, it hadn’t been that hot the night before at Hampton Beach, or I would have had to give the finger to the Summer Wind restaurant and it’s broken air conditioning.
Chooch got mac n’ cheese and complained about it because he’s a kid and that is what kids do, I guess. I wouldn’t know, because when I was his age, I was eating lobster and other fancy things because I was amazing and spoiled. I made some comment about how it’s hard for any restaurant to match up when I make the world’s best mac n’ cheese, which made Henry almost choke on his eyeballs, but Chooch agreed! Probably only because he doesn’t know any better.
Other than not eating, Chooch was relatively civilized during dinner, which is always cause for a big exhale afterward. You never know how restaurants and children are going to mesh! It’s known to be a volatile combo sometimes.
Matt and Kristen wanted to order a bottle of wine, and asked Henry and me if we would drink some, too. Me? Wine? Fuck yes. But the thought of Henry drinking wine made me LOL openly. Maybe if they had a Faygo-flavored blend. Our efficient water-pouring waiter asked to see my ID when Kristen ordered the wine, and since I’m so fucking naive, I didn’t realize he was joking until after I had dug through my purse for my drivers license, so then the waiter felt obliged I guess to feign shock over the fact that I’m 33 when I only really look 16. Nice try, buddy.
[Ed.Note: After I posted this, Kristen pointed out that I missed the best part of dinner, when Chooch was doing some word activity thing on the back of his placemat, one of those “How many words can you make out of these letters” games, and the first word he found was “retard.” That’s my boy!]
It had started to cool off a little bit by the time we finished dinner. Kristen had to take a work call as soon as we left McCormick & Schmick’s, which is something she will probably live to regret for the rest of her life. (Or at least a few days.)
Because she wasn’t there to veto my desire to “stick around and check out this promising street performer.”
“Oh, can we stay for this? CAN WE!?” I asked Matt, who shrugged a silent “OK, but guaranteed this guy is going to suck.” Besides, I had already made eye contact with Bob (that’s his name, and he’s a JUGGLER), so I felt obliged. Plus, literally only 3 other people listened to him when he called out for people to stay and gather in close to him for some semblance of an audience.
Chooch got to assist with removing a ball from his tube.
Basically, this guy took decent juggling skills and mired it down with a heavy-handed, mildly-racist comedy script. And he made two young guys volunteer (the one was so resistant and by the end looked semi-homicidal) for a grand finale that may or may not have happened because we grew bored watching and then it started to rain REALLY HARD which is my fault because had we ignored Bob the Shitty Juggler in the first place, we probably would have been back at Matt and Kristen’s apartment.
But it was worth it just to see how totally annoyed Kristen was. Oh my god, she HATED BOB from the moment she returned from her work call and proceeded to spend the next—-how much time did we waste on Bob? 20 minutes? 30? seemed like a lifetime—xx minutes finding different ways to say that he sucked. Maybe the wine from dinner played a role in this, but I could NOT stop cheering ironically, which gave me laughing fits that required me to bury my face in Henry’s arm several times.
Kristen and Chooch got lost at the T station and admittedly, part of me was like, “Yay! No more balloon sword!” But then Matt wrangled them up.
Pondering about Bob. “How did he do all of those magnificent stunts!?”
Another blurry picture. I’m so mad that I left the real camera at home. WTF kind of amateur tourist am I?!
Hung out for a little bit back at Matt and Kristen’s. Kristen continued to win Chooch’s heart by sitting on the floor with him and asking him to help her play games on her iPad. Friends Forever!
It was so awesome seeing them again and I wish we had gotten there earlier like we had planned. Blame Henry. Besides, Matt probably wanted some privacy to watch “The Craft.”
Made our way out of Boston and found some lame hotel somewhere relatively close to Fall River and found out that the Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup! But then I felt guilty for being so gleeful because it was hard not to get caught up in the excitement being in Boston and wanting to be all “Boston Strong, yo!”
Seriously, YOU try living with this dichotomy.
Henry sent me up to the second floor of the hotel ALONE AND IN THE DARK OF THE NIGHT to unlock the door and I was very nearly kidnapped while he stayed in the parking lot devising a way to carry every single piece of luggage all on his lone person. Bob the Juggler could’ve done it, but not without pretending to fail for 20 minutes while telling really frustrating jokes.
Chooch fell asleep immediately with Bunny Stew (he’s really into bunnies these days):
Several days after we came home, Henry texted me a picture he took of the TV. It was Faneuil Hall (WTF, had to scroll up for the spelling; I hate this word!!) from some show Henry was watching on the Food Network. “No Bob, though ;(” Henry captioned the picture. Bob the Juggler: NEVER FORGET.