Sick Munchkin

After spending all of about five minutes in perfect health and wellness following her recent cold, the lovely Jayna developed croup last night, which meant I had to take another sick day to care for her while Wonder Woman was at work. Awesome.

I took her to the doc around midday, and because of her cough, I was instructed to bring her in not through the front entrance, but through the back entrance, at which point I was to use the courtesy phone to call the reception desk and notify them that we were waiting in the quarantined airlock area, doing our best not to infect the masses.

I did as I was told, and after about 10 minutes of waiting in purgatory, a nurse wearing a face mask came to retrieve us and tried to get Jayna to put on a face mask, as well. Jayna responded by saying, “Not on your life, bitch!” At least, that’s what she might as well have said, so the clearly annoyed Nurse Huffypants allowed the 39-pound peanut to break protocol and head into the doc’s office unmasked. Four years old and already a total rebel.

Eventually, our pediatrician came in to check her out, and not once during the entire exam did she cough, which prompted me to ask the doc if he could just hang out with us all day, since apparently his presence is a natural cough suppressant. He wasn’t up for that, so he instead sent in a nurse with a small dose of strawberry-flavored syrup that contained a steroid designed to reduce the croup-induced inflammation of her vocal cords and adjacent areas. Jayna responded to the presentation of this elixir with a hardy “Not on your life, bitch!” At least, that’s what she might as well have said, so the clearly annoyed Nurse Huffypants II acquiesced when I asked her to leave us so that I could coax Jayna into taking it, which I eventually did … sort of.

I say “sort of” because she somehow pulled off a magic trick whereby she drank the medicine, and then drank a little shot of water that I placed in the medicine cup, and then I turned my head for a moment, and when I turned back, there was a big drop of bright red strawberry syrup clinging to her bottom lip, and a massive drizzle of the stuff staining the front of her shirt (visible adjacent to her right upper arm). I have no idea how she accomplished this.

Ironically, the ordeal of getting her to take the medicine resulted in much crying and coughing, which seemed rather counter-intuitive.

Once I had mopped her up and calmed her down, we headed over to the nearby Dunkin Donuts, because I like to make sure the kids eat healthy when they’re sick. She wolfed down three glazed Munchkins and drank a whopping two or three sips of orange juice, and that was just fine with me, because, with the yucky taste of the medicine defeated and her tummy now relatively full, the only thing left for her to do was fall asleep during the ride home … which, thankfully, she did.

Wonder Woman returned from work a short while later, and I have since spent many hours setting up the new MacBook Pro and monitor that my employer sent to replace my deceased iMac.

Point being: that awesome blog entry I was planning to write today? Yeah, that didn’t happen. Instead, you get a sleep-deprived me describing yet another challenging day in suburbia. And with that, I bid you good night.

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OK, so, basically, if you’re not a fan of macro photos of cold grass, wet grass and wet leaves on the ground adorned with really uncreative titles, then allow me to say “Sucks for you” “Sorry”; this has most definitely not been your week here.

As for me, I’m completely entertained by these nature photos; I took them rather hastily, and I’ve found it fascinating to look at them on the monitor here and see all of the minute and beautiful details that were not at all apparent to me at the time I captured them.

Plus, it’s not every day that you find an upside to having dead leaves on the ground, so I’m carpe diem-ing … or something like that.

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Do the dew

I told you it was even cooler than the “Frost” one.

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Get real

Get real

Listen up, you mental patients: I didn’t really shove my kids into straight jackets straitjackets, duct-tape their mouths shut and slap chastity belts on my wife and myself. I would never, ever do such a thing … wear a chastity belt, I mean; I got a vasectomy years ago.

Of course, I wouldn’t do the other stuff, either … in front of a camera.

No, what you witnessed was the result of my mad Photoshop skillz … which I didn’t think would actually fool anybody; I thought you’d all just look at the picture and say, “Ha! That Jon and his mad Photoshop skillz!” But, apparently, some of you think I’d actually incriminate myself in front of the entire Internet … so I feel it’s important to show you the original image, which actually was taken in July of last year, while we were in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.

Which reminds me: it’s been at least 10 seconds since I complained about summer being over, and more than a full minute since I said “I wish it was time to go back to the beach house in Delaware.” There, I feel better now.

Speaking of trips to warmer climes: that California vacation I mentioned yesterday? Writing about it brought back one of the more priceless memories from my childhood, which came courtesy of my younger brother, who was a few months shy of his fifth birthday at the time.

Picture this: My 4-year-old brother, 6-year-old sister and I are seated in the rental car with our father. We are parked outside of NBC Studios in Burbank, where my mother is standing in a crowded line to snag a pair of tickets for that evening’s taping of “The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.”

We’re listening to the radio while waiting for her when, suddenly, a jaunty little number by AC/DC comes on. It’s a song we’ve never heard before. Something about a man who likes to organize large, formal functions. Balls, as it were.

The chorus kicks in, and we are serenaded by Bon Scott singing, “I’ve got big balls,” a phrase he repeats about a gazillion times. My father presumably is on a mental vacation of his own (a common occurrence), so the song continues to play uninterrupted.

And here’s where we enter full-on Griswold status:

My brother hangs his upper body out the back window of the car as the beautiful people of Hollywood are milling about and the gorgeous Southern California sun is shining down, and yells at the top of his little lungs, “HEY MOM! WE’VE GOT BIG BALLS!

Twenty-nine years later, I still laugh mine off every time I remember it.

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One of the only positive things about sinking into the dark and dreary morass of fall and winter is that many photographic opportunities not present at any other time of the year suddenly present themselves. With any luck, I’ll be able to stay focused on such things and avoid developing full-blown Seasonal Affective Disorder.

You know what’s even cooler looking than these blades of grass adorned with frost? The shot I captured of the blades of grass on which the frost had melted. Something to look forward to for tomorrow.

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