After the dinky Memorial Day parade last Monday, Janna came over and we all took a joyful trip out to Living Treasures in Donegal. Janna strode through my front door with the remnants of her lunch, which included A DRINK.
“WHAT’S IN THAT?” I demanded to know.
“Iced tea,” she answered in that indignant tone she’s been getting with me all of a sudden.
“WELL, YOU CAN’T TAKE THAT IN MY CAR,” I said calmly, I have no idea what would give you any idea that I screamed it.
So then a few minutes later, we were all ready to go after Henry yelled at us repeatedly because that’s all he does these days is yell yell yell. As I was putting on my seat belt, I noticed that Janna was in the backseat with that damn drink!!
“JANNA WHAT DID I TELL YOU ABOUT THAT DRINK!?” I asked without the slightest hint of hysterics.
“It’s nearly empty!” she whined, and then she SHOOK IT and droplet of ICED TEA EJACULATED ONTO THE BACKS OF MY CAR SEATS!
And here we all thought CHOOCH would be the first to spill!
We brought Spoon with us for #spoonselfies. Henry was #thrilled. My #LenoChin is out in full force. #hashtag
So, Living Treasures is better than a petting farm but not as great as a zoo. And it always seems like a WOW SO GREAT idea to go until I remember how far of a drive it is (like 90 minutes or something equally as absurd which is basically anything more than 20 minutes). They have goats and sheep and ducks but also VARIOUS MONKEYS and LIONS and OTHER THINGS. Other things like BEARS! So it’s pretty cool, but I always get so sad seeing those guys behind glass.
I’m one of those bleeding heart PETA motherfuckers.
We had some “just pay half” coupon that was good for four people so Janna was our charity case for the day. I wanted to make her pay us back, but Henry was like, “Erin.”
Once Janna passed the Robitussin pat-down, we were allowed to enter the zoo-thing.
Henry bought Chooch a big bag of feed, and 99% of it wound up on the ground each time he would attempt to feed a thing. Their snouts would get within three feet and Chooch would scream, drop the feed, and pull away his hand. Henry was like YOU’RE NOT DOING IT RIGHT!
But I kind of had to get behind Chooch on this one because I am TERRIFIED of feeding animals at petting zoos ever since that time a camel deep-throated my hand back in 2007.
YOU DON’T FOOL ME.
There’s a reason Chooch has been calling camels “cannibals” since he was a baby, you guys. That’s not just a cute mispronunciation!
Here’s Chooch, still in a good mood.
Here’s Chooch approximately 5 minutes later, decidedly NOT in a good mood anymore. That kid switches as fast as I do and it’s kind of remarkable. (Or annoying. That too.)
Chooch and Janna had an argument about the peacock and now I can’t remember what it was but HE SURE TOLD HER. He gets so sassy when he’s overheated and tired.
OK I just asked Chooch, whose memory is much more plump and nubile than mine, and he said it was because we were petting a kangaroo, and he commented that it was so soft. Then Janna petted it and said it was soft, so Chooch flipped out and yelled, “I KNOW, JANNA. I ALREADY SAID THAT.” So then Janna cried, “I was just AGREEING with you, CHOOCH!” We are like a traveling troupe of hostile situations.
I have no idea where he gets this.
(The peacock keeps coming to mind because I think I had an argument with Chooch over the peacock. We all had our turn with Chooch’s temper that day.)
Another one of these little fuckers bit my side while I was taking this picture.
OMG IT’S DOGE! MOMMY TAKE MY PICTURE WITH DOGE! WHAT DOES DOGE EAT?!
There was a white buffalo there and as we all started to walk away after the requisite 19 seconds of visually admiring the [insert living treasure], I noticed that Henry was hanging back.
“Wow, Henry is really into the buffalo,” I thought to myself. Then I noticed that he was TAKING A PICTURE OF IT and seriously, how often does Henry care enough about turning a moment into a keepsake? Like, rarely ever. But then I put two and two together because I’m great at basic mathematics and I realized that it was a Ted Nugent reference and he was posting it on Instagram for Alyson because she loves to pump him for info regarding The One Time he went to see Ted Nugent in THE NINTEEN EIGHTIES and allegedly knocked over some broad in a wheelchair like a hungry llama bum-rushing the Living Treasures zookeeper.
The only way to exit Living Treasures is through the gift shop. Well played< LivTreas. Janna had to go to the bathroom of course and asked us where it was so I pointed at some random, clearly off-limits staircase and she was like, “OK thanks” and started to walk up them but then Chooch and I started laughing so she figured out that it was A TRAP. Then Henry played the Nice Guy card and showed her where the bathroom really was while Chooch threw a myriad of fits because we wouldn’t buy him all the stupid educational shit that he wanted. God! Go learn with your own money!
I think the girls behind the counter thought we were shoplifting because the three of us just kind of roamed around aimlessly while waiting for Janna and I don’t know how to “look casual.” I always accidentally look like I’m suffering through meth ticks, and I repetitively pull my phone out of my purse and then put it back, pull it out, put it back, TRY TO LOOK CASUAL, whistle, ACCIDENTAL EYE CONTACT WITH CASHIER, kick imaginary rocks, FURTIVE GLANCES ALL OVER THE FUCKING PLACE. I’m a shop owner’s nightmare.
“LET’S WAIT FOR HER OUTSIDE,” I thought I said in a normal voice but it sounded like it came out of a tin can, so who knows.
Much sad. Very pout.
Finally, Janna emerged from the gift shop, freshly ‘Tussed and carrying a cold bottle of water. Chooch flipped out because why was she able to buy water but we wouldn’t buy him water? IT’S BECAUSE WE ARE TRYING TO KILL HIM SLOWLY! Henry calmly explained that it was because we were going to stop and get lunch and then as we walked across the parking lot, Chooch very seriously asked if we were almost home.
BOY, YOU DRUNK BOY. YOU DRUNK. BOY.
Luckily for Chooch, we only drove a few miles down the road before stopping at Tall Cedars which I knew immediately was The One. I know it’s kind of out-of-character, since I was born choking on a silver spoon, but I love me some trashy roadside food-slingers. And this was just that. Bar on one side, “dining room” on the other, parking lot full of pick-up trucks.
“I am going to eat the FUCK out of a grilled cheese,” I said, fists pumped.
No one got the daily special (I know you’re shocked that I didn’t eat that shit up) but I couldn’t wait to ask about the deserts! Surprisingly, “potato/potatoes” is spelled correctly.
Chooch was still in a sour mood when we got there, especially because he wanted to sit by me but Henry and Janna were like, “Ew we don’t want to sit together” so Henry made Chooch move and he was like WHY CAN’T YOU JUST LET ME BE MY OWN PERSON.
Yeah Henry. Stop making it all about you!
Oh my god, it took our food so long to get there and I think it’s because HENRY stopped our waitress as she was running herself ragged to and fro the kitchen so that he could add on an order of wings, and I’m not lying when I say that it really changed the tone. She went from calling us all hon and basically doting on us to thinking we were entitle CITY FOLK so thanks a lot Henry. Acting like he deserves wings because it’s Memorial Day or something.
Chooch’s Holy Burger.
Actually not pouting, just making faces.
Chooch’s hair was all greasy from the profuse sweating he had been doing all day, so it was super pliable. Every time he would rub his hands through it (which he does often since he is so stressed), he came out the other end looking like a different 1980s New Wave singer every time. It was fantastically entertaining. And we needed all the entertaining we could get since it was taking SO LONG for our basic grilled cheese and burgers to be served.
Janna was fighting with her roommate and that seemed to cheer up Chooch because he loves conflict.
And then I got blueberry pie, Janna got lemon meringue (because that’s what Chooch told her to get), and Chooch got red velvet cake. Henry got NOTHING because he had already treated himself for the month with his AUXILIARY WING ORDER. Hope it was worth it, Memorial Day Hank.
Then it was time to pay and Henry told Janna to just give him $4 for her part of the check, which he was going to use for the tip, but then she only gave him THREE DOLLARS because the ‘Tussin is rotting her brain, you guys.
On the way home, we drove past this junk yard which I remembered from the very first time Henry and I went to Living Treasures in 2004 (a/k/a That Time I Made People Match Up Poop With The Animal It Came From* on LiveJournal) and he voluntarily told me that he has a fear of FALLING FROM THE SKY ON TO METAL.
I WILL NEVER FORGET THAT, EVER. Now he barely ever offers up self-fact nuggets and I can’t imagine why.
Somewhere along the way, the cherry cider episode happened, too.
And that was our Memorial Day. It was OK. Better than being at work, I guess.
*(I was even more obnoxious back then, if you can believe it. The winner of that contest (my pal Kevin!) got a t-shirt with my face on it, you guys. I’m an asshole.)