Thursday, June 14, 2007

Fathers, etc.

I thought I'd mention that it's Father's Day on Sunday so those of you who are obligated to put something in the mail will remember to do that today (you know who you are). At the risk of sounding like an ungrateful little brat, however, I think father's day is complete bullshit. I'd like to hear from an actual father on this one, but as far as I can tell these holidays (father's day, mother's day, valentine's day, etc.) just end up making people feel guilty for not appreciating these people everyday and then guilty again for giving some half-assed present (or card) that doesn't really help the situation. Then the father probably just ends up feeling like if he actually was appreciated, he wouldn't be getting such a stupid card.

Am I wrong? Please tell me, holiday-celebraters and fathers.

I got a letter from my own father yesterday. He lives in North Kern State Prison and likes to tell me what it's like. Most of these letters seem to be taken up by numbers. For instance, what time the mail gets picked up (8pm), between which hours is it dropped off (4 - 10pm), how many letters he has gotten in the last certain number of days (13 in 3), how many times he's gotten to shower that week (3), what number he is on the haircut list (12), which letters of mine (specifically) he has received in case some didn't get through, etc.

He's a mathematical guy and likes to make lists of things. Here is one:

"When I woke up this Monday morning I was actually looking forward to the week for the following reasons:

1) We mite get off lockdown
2) I may get mail
3) We may get to trim our fingernails
4) I mite get to go to the store
5) We mite go outside"

All "may's or "mite's." Unclear if that's how he thinks "might" is spelled or if he thinks it's worth leaving off the "gh" to save pencil lead. He tends to write "u" for "you," "ur" for "your," etc. and in tiny block letters (two rows per line) for that reason, but it makes me sort of feel like I'm reading some kid's text messages.

This is my favorite part, though:

"I have a 66 year old white cellmate (since May 9). I hope I keep him as long as possible. We get along very well and have a lot in common. He is a fundamental Christian and has strong ideas about who is going to Hell: gays, everyone with a tattoo, blacks, Mexicans, Muslims, Catholics, etc. Pretty much everyone but him. But we get along fine."

A lot in common?! Plus, imagine being in prison and hating people with tattoos! How does that guy know he's not in hell right now?

Anyway, I've totally lost track as to what this post was supposed to be about.

Appreciate your parents every day even if you don't like them very much because at least you can make fun of them on the internet?
If you insist upon cutting your nails with a nailclipper be happy you don't have to share it with 100 other people?
Mail your father's day cards today?
You decide.


Ben said...


Also salt and pepper. I have yet to get a letter that doesn't mention salt and pepper. Like seasoning is the fucking point of life or something.

And no, I didn't mail anything today. I repeat: fuuuuuuuck.

alice said...

you can always blame the mailroom...
i have a list of "unauthorized items" they sent when they returned one of my letters; i will email it to you.

Ben said...

Just got back from CVS, where I went to grab a card to mail, so that I could plausibly claim the delay was due to the mailroom fuckers at NKSP.

There sure are a lot of cards you can't purchase if you're dad's in the big house:

1) Humorous cards about beer. (No beer in the slammer.)

2) Humorous cards referring to your dad's penchant for gardening/lawn care/fishing/playing sports. (Seems like adding insult to injury.)

3) Sincere cards about what a good role model your father is, and how you hope that someday you will be able to attain what he has attained. (I'll bring my own salt & pepper.)

I settled for a card making a crack about how many bathroom breaks we took during long roadtrips as kids. It was the best I could do.

alice said...

I was proud of my choice of card. It's a drawing of a big giraffe saying to a little giraffe "it's a jungle out there" and then on the inside it says "thanks for all the advice." Ha! Get it? 'Cos our dad is tall? And it subtley hints at the fact that maybe we shouldn't take his advice? Because i don't even think giraffes live in jungles.

M. Alice said...

I didn't manage to get anything in the mail in order to put a band-aid on the poor excuse for a relationship I've got with my old man. So I just gave the guy a phone call and engaged in the awkward palaver we've got going.

Hallmark can go suck it.