I was so thankful to get the fuck out of our classy Super 8 hotel room Sunday morning. It wasn’t the WORST hotel I’ve stayed in, considering I’ve stayed in MOTELS too—the PAY BY THE HOUR KIND, can you even imagine—but the beds were rock hard and Henry snored all fucking night. Get fucked in the nostril, Henry. Really.
I had to pee so bad by the time we reached the part of Cleveland where we were scheduled to brunch it up, so Henry stopped at one of their local supermarkets, a Heinen, and I have never in my life felt underdressed in a grocery store, holy fuck. It was in Rocky River, which evidently is pretty uppity in and of itself, so there I am, in leggings and a bright pink Cure t-shirt, walking like a frantic pigeon in search of the bathroom. But my nagging bladder proved to be very fortuitous because this grocery store had MOTHERFUCKING CHERIMOYA, WHAT’S UP?! And also fresh figs! And a kind of apple I’ve never devoured before!
So I’m sure Heinen didn’t care that some ragamuffin family utilized their facilities once we spent $20 on designer fruit. After which came brunch at Market, which had valet parking. We were thankful that we had a nice, clean rental car to hand over and not our disgusting, squeaky, stinky, garbage-strewn (from HENRY AND CHOOCH, THEY ARE SLOBS) Ford Focus.
Anyway, brunch was phenomenal. I had an omelette with shrimp and lobster cream cheese that was so fucking amazing and not stewing in a pool of its own grease, so I didn’t even feel like a bloated pig for the rest of the day! And I got to talk about music, Warped Tour, Jonny Craig, and more music the entire time and no one stopped me because it was my motherfucking birthday weekend, get on board or die.
The waffles have chives and corn in them. I thought it would have to be disgusting (I can’t wrap my head around savory waffles; I know they exist, but I’m going to order mine with strawberries, blueberries, cinnamon, honey, ice cream, whipped cream and angel dust every single time, thanks) but Henry gave me a bite of his and I wanted to cry, it was that good. And Chooch got blueberry pancakes. Let me tell you a story about Chooch: he’s a kid, and 99% of kids have horrible appetites. But he ate all of his pancakes! Ate them like they were going out of style. Clearly, valet parking is key.
The main reason I wanted to go to Cleveland was so we could visit the Museum of Divine Statues, which is only open on Sundays and the last 3 times we have visited Cleveland have been on Saturdays. I tried to go twice earlier this year, but Henry conveniently made up reasons why we couldn’t go, because even more than Henry hates making me happy, Henry hates religious roadside attractions.
From the website:
The Museum of Divine Statues opened April 10, 2011 in the former home of St. Hedwig’s Church. It is the vision of restoration artist, Lou McClung, who was passionate about creating a reflective and reverential space where ecclesiastical statues could be displayed.
His mission to rescue and restore religious statues, many of which come from parishes recently decommissioned by the Cleveland Catholic Diocese, will help preserve the history of those churches, as well as traditional Catholic art.
This is a thing for me! And finally, after two years, I got to leave my blasphemous mark on the wall.
I was concerned about Chooch though. I didn’t want him acting like, well, himself. It’s hard taking children to things of this nature because if they’re bored, they’re going to let everyone know it. Luckily, he had my old iPhone with him so when the lady in the gift shop told us photography is allowed, I encouraged him to take pictures to post to Instagram later. This appealed to him. Other things that appealed to him were St. Lucy’s eyeballs on a plate, a skull next to St. Francis, and the museum’s mascot: an elderly dog named Daisy.
I love, love, love St. Francis and have visited Assisi, Italy numerous times. But I’m used to seeing him with animals around him, or in the middle of a birdbath, not with a skull at his feet, so it was nice to see a darker representation of him.
The restoration artist was there, hovering around non-intrusively, and he eagerly answered all of my questions without making me feel like a moronic heathen, which really added to the experience. I learned that real glass eyeballs were used in a lot of the creepier statues, and the really old ones were made with plaster mixed with horse hair to give them better strength. He was super cool with Chooch and didn’t treat him like a wrecking ball, but rather bonded with him over the dog.
Some Celine Dion song came on at one point, and I was just like, “My god, where the hell am I?” The whole experience was pretty surreal.
He even had a small collection of relics!
We let Chooch light a candle (he actually tried to light 96,987 candles) and then he knelt down to say a prayer, which was pretty much the sweetest thing ever. He made me go away for that though.
(If his prayer had anything to do with Minecraft….)
Chooch was actually pretty into it! I was really surprised. All of the statues had laminated pages of info next to them, and Chooch even flipped through some of them. He spent a little bit of time trying to find a Mary statue that looked like the one we saw the night before, so hey—at least he was able to make some sort of a game out of it.
Can you imagine, most of the statues were going to be thrown out until Lou started collecting and restoring them. Thank you, Lou!
We were there for about an hour. On our way out, the lady in the gift shop called out, “Your little boy was so well-behaved!” It’s these little victories that keep me from packing a bag and running away in the middle of the night, so thank you for not being an asshole in the religious statue place, Chooch.
I felt so peaceful by the time we left! Divine statues FTW!
Next, we went to Big Fun, which is my favorite toy store ever and I’ve bought a lot of shit there for Chooch. But this was his first time.
He was pretty much in heaven.
And I actually bought myself stuff this time! A Goonies coffee cup and a $6 Mystical Garden which is sitting on my desk in full synthetic bloom.
I’m easily pleased.
Next, we went to Flower Child, which is a treasure trove of Brady Bunch furniture, creepy art and tacky dresses. I fucking love that place so much! Henry said NO to everything I wanted because he’s a dickhead. (And probably because it reminds him too much of his childhood since he’s so old.)
Flower Child taught Chooch about Playboy, which he proceeded to talk about for the rest of the day, but only when there were enough people near us to hear. “HEY MOMMY, REMEMBER ALL OF THOSE PLAYBOYS!!??!?!”
Seriously, they were everywhere and Chooch was always the first to spot them.
I wish I was having breakfast there right now. :(
“WTF is this?”
BURNT ORANGE EVERYWHERE!
Yes, another place we managed to make it out of without Chooch breaking anything! Although I probably should have checked the waistband of his shorts to make sure there was no rolled-up Playboy wedged in there.