Category Archives: Cap’n Firepants
While I was at swim practice with my daughter (I like the way that sounds – as though I was actually doing laps with her…) my husband was doing yard work. For some reason, he does not find it very beneficial to have Wonderbutt in the yard with him at the same time. Apparently, Wonderbutt likes to poop in leaf piles. I wish I had known that a long time ago, because that knowledge could be useful for the times when I want to take the Dog Who Poops as He Walks for a little saunter around the neighborhood.
Anyway, Cap’n Firepants texted me this photo, and said, “He’s barking at me.”
To which I replied, “Poor guy.”
To which he replied, “Me or the dog;)”
To which I did not reply.
And that, my friends, is one of the many reason why we’re still married.
So now that I’ve been on this new medication for awhile, it’s become clear to me that my occasional lapses of memory are probably not caused by terrorists poisoning my food. I mean, that’s pretty ridiculous when you think about it. It’s not like terrorists are that subtle. They bomb restaurants; they don’t sprinkle memory altering drugs on the filet mignon.
Clearly, I have Mad Cow Disease.
The problem with this is that I used to be a vegetarian. So, I only have myself to blame. I hate blaming myself. It’s really not healthy. Although I don’t think it’s quite as damaging as Mad Cow Disease.
Before you pooh pooh my occasional lapses of memory, you might want to hear about the most recent example.
I forgot to take my clothes out the washing machine.
Don’t worry, there is more to the story.
When I finally remembered, I opened the washing machine – only to find it empty.
This was perplexing, to say the least. Puzzlement turned into fury, however, when I opened the dryer to find all of my clothes. Very dry. And very small. Because they are not supposed to go in the dryer. But my loving husband, thinking he was doing me a favor by not pointing out that I forgot to transfer my clothing from one appliance to the next, did it for me.
“Fine, I guess I’ll do him a favor back,” I thought in a not very vengeful way. At that point I was actually feeling remorseful because between finding out my clothes would be better suited for a Barbie doll and thinking that I should do my husband a favor, I had already sent a slightly sarcastic and biting message to Cap’n Firepants not exactly thanking him for his “favor.”
On the slight chance he really did mean to do me a favor, I realized that I might have been somewhat rude.
Cap’n Firepants had a heap of jeans on his side of the closet, so I decided that I would apologize for my sarcasm by washing them.
Now, although we don’t actually take our clothes down to the riverbank and beat them, the procedurefor washing clothes in the Firepants household is nearly as labor intensive: 1. Turn on the washing machine, 2. Pour in detergent. 3. Put in the clothes. 4. Run around the house and grab more clothes from various nooks and crannies to make sure you do not waste water on a load that does not quite exceed the weight limit of a service elevator. 5. Add the bra that you extracted from the dog’s teeth. 6. Close the top of the machine. 7. Come back in 5 minutes and realize the machine stopped. 8. Open the top and let it drop hard in a very dramatic way to restart the cycle. 9. Kick the machine to show it who is boss.
I got the whole process rolling, and patted myself on the back for being the bigger person. Even though I was really not bigger; my clothes were just smaller.
Thirty minutes later, I passed by the laundry room, and realized it was awfully quiet. I looked in and, sure enough, I had forgotten to close the top. I closed it. I kicked it. Noise ensued.
Don’t you see? Total proof that I have Mad Cow Disease.
Oh, need more?
So, a couple of hours later, we returned to the house after having taken Dimples to and from piano lessons. I proudly remembered that I needed to put the jeans of Cap’n Firepants into the dryer.
I opened the washing machine. No clothes.
Now, Cap’n Firepants was still at work, as far as I knew. But, it seemed clear to me that he had driven twenty minutes home, put his clothes in the dryer, and then gone back to work. Obviously.
I looked in the dryer.
Oh. My. God! Someone stole Cap’n Firepants’ clothes. While we were gone, someone snuck in the house, stole 5 pairs of jeans and my bra, and left.
Nonsense, I realized – after a few minutes of complete panic.
Obviously, Cap’n Firepants came home, put his clothes in the dryer, waited for them to dry, put them away, and went back to work.
Easy to prove. I’ll just walk into the closet and there will be the freshly folded clothes.
I walked into the closet.
There was the heap of jeans.
Oh. My. God!
He came home, put his clothes in the dryer, waited for them to dry, put them away, got them all dirty, put them back on the floor, and then went back to work. In the space of 2 hours.
Or I forgot to put them in the washing machine.
Oh. My. God.
I just did a load of laundry with no clothes in it.
And that, my friends, is why you should not eat meat.
Well, it’s sex education time again in the Firepants household. This year, our daughter, Dimples, gets to keep us involved by asking us questions each night for homework. I dutifully answered last night’s questions, so I assigned her dad, Cap’n Firepants this evening’s responses. They were fairly innocuous questions, (“What do you remember about the friends you had when you were my age?”) so I felt like it was a fair request. While Dimples was interviewing him, I took a peek at the ones for tomorrow night, knowing the responsibility would fall back onto my shoulders. The theme for tomorrow seems to have something to do with self-confidence, asking questions like, “How did you feel about yourself when you were my age?” I think I can handle that.
Then I saw the ones for Friday night. Haha, Cap’n Firepants. You’re in for a treat…
“What do you know about sexually transmitted diseases?” I asked Cap’n Firepants right about the time he was feeling like he’d dodged a bullet with tonight’s interrogation.
“Nothing,” he said quickly. The teacher in me was about to reprimand him for lack of elaboration. Then I thought about it. What, exactly, is the right way to answer that question when asked by your 10 year old daughter? Is it better to claim ignorance than to risk implying that we know a bit too much? If I pass the buck to Cap’n Firepants, is he going to shame our family forever by saying too little or way too much? NOBODY WARNED ME THAT I WOULD STILL BE RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS INFORMATION 30 YEARS AFTER I TOOK THE CLASS.
Can someone do me a solid and slip me the crib notes?
“Umm. Shouldn’t you be getting ready for work?”
This is never a good way to start the day. If anyone ever has the bright idea of inventing an alarm clock with this spine-tingling statement as its wake up call, rest assured that you will never rest assured again.
However, I will kiss the person who invents an alarm clock that intuitively sets itself when you fall into bed late at night or screams like a banshee when you make any attempt to shut it off in your sleep.
The middle of my day was actually not that bad considering how it started. Surprisingly.
But, apparently my Libran consciousness cannot abide by imbalance. So, I decided to end the day just as spectacularly as I began it by spilling a venti mocha all over the table at Starbucks. The table on which my iPad and iPhone both rested.
Don’t worry, though. I have my priorities. I snatched both devices out of the chocolate ocean and yelled for life-saving equipment. (Paper towels) I had to yell because not one of the other customers leapt to my aid which, sadly, has been my consistent experience with witnesses to every single one of my life-long string of disasters.
I think the electronics may have miraculously survived. My iPad case and my dry-clean only skirt did not fare so well, unfortunately.
To some people, this set of unfortunate occurrences might appear to be minor inconveniences. To me, they are clearly a message.
My husband is one lucky guy.
Who else gets to start his morning with a crazed woman leaping out of bed spouting expletives and end his day with that lovely lady returning home to repeat the same eloquent speech?
I just hope he appreciates his good fortune.
I don’t know how I came to be so fortunate, but our Tennessee Family Reunion happened to coincide with the exact dates of the The World’s Longest Yard Sale.
I mean, what are the odds? Especially when I had no knowledge that such a sale existed?!!!!!!!
Here’s how we found out: Once Cap’n Firepants and I stopped yelling at each other about where we should each go, we noticed an inordinate amount of traffic on our route to Chuckles Entertainment Center, and mentioned this to the man kind enough to take our money for our round of Bible Verse Miniature Golf.
“Oh, yeah, that happens every year when we have The World’s Longest Yard Sale,” he said.
So, of course, I thought this was some kind of hyperbole. But it turned out it wasn’t. There really is such an event and we just happened to be smack, dab in the middle of it. The sale, I kid you not, goes 690 miles from Michigan to Alabama.
And we almost missed it.
I could not allow such a momentous event to take place under our noses without attending it, ourselves. So, all Family Reunion plans were completely readjusted in order to make room in the schedule for a visit to The World’s Longest Yard Sale. And, just to make things interesting, I threw down the gauntlet.
“We all put in a dollar, and whoever takes the picture of the tackiest, ugliest item at the sale wins the pool,” I challenged.
And so, folks, I give you some of the entries in the Firepants Rummage Sale Contest. It is only some because some people (I won’t name any names, Crash, even though all you did the entire week of our Family Reunion was take pictures) did not send me an entry.
Now, we actually already determined a winner. And it’s no coincidence that he happens to be the patriarch of this fine family;) But I’m going to let you decide who the rightful champion should be…
It’s mildly disappointing to travel 900 miles in 2 and a half hours and find out you ended up exactly where you started. Particularly if you spent $1000 for the pleasure.
You may have surmised from the last post regarding the unceremonious deposit of Wonderbutt (and his sister, Mrs. P.I.B.) at the kennel that the Firepants family was about to embark on a vacation.
We live in Texas. We flew to Nashville for the first leg of our trip.
As we wandered around downtown Nashville, I had my camera ready for exotic pictures of this new locale. But it turns out Nashville is just like San Antonio – only more. It’s like someone turned on the Texas radio station in their Ford pickup and cranked up the volume full blast just to make sure the cows on the ranch in the next county could hear.
More cowboy hats.
More country music.
Same street names.
Same tourist traps.
I might as well have just stayed at home and taken a cab downtown for half the price.
I tried to hide my disappointment and to enthusiastically involve the family in my observations.
“Look! There’s a poor homeless person on the sidewalk playing a broken drum!” I’m pretty sure it’s the same guy I saw in SA three days ago.
And then I saw it. I jumped up and down (to the chagrin of my husband, Cap’n Firepants, who prefers to blend into the crowd).
“Look! Look!” I pointed to the novel sight – something we definitely do NOT have in San Antonio.
“What?” my 10-year-old daughter cried.
“A bar! On wheels! That you pedal! Down the street while you’re drinking!” I exclaimed.
Finally – something she can write about on her, “What I Did on Summer Vacation” essay.
Technically, I didn’t bring you the terrorists. I just called attention to them. Well, I tried to call attention to them. As far as I can tell, the F organizations (FBI and FDA) have made absolutely no attempt to thwart the terrorists’ blatant attempt to slowly sabotage our population by putting memory-erasing additives in increasingly gluten free food. Of course, they could be making efforts that I don’t know about – or that I’ve conveniently forgotten.
In the meantime, the terrorists have infiltrated the dry cleaning business. How do I know this? My keen powers of observation tell me so.
I was recently at the cleaners, and got a bit nosy about one what of the employees was doing behind the counter.
“What is she doing?” I subtly asked the person dropping my clothes into a bag.
“Her? Oh, she’s just ironing a bar code onto those pants. You know, so we can make sure they don’t get lost.” She said this kind of nervously. And who can blame her for being nervous when being interrogated by the intrepid Mrs. Cap’n Firepants?
Before I could ask any more penetrating questions, the terrorist/dry cleaner employee shoved my claim ticket into my hand, and beckoned the next customer.
And then it hit me.
“Oh. My. God.” I thought. I raced home and dashed into my closet. Sure enough, all of my recently drycleaned clothing had bar codes in them.
So much for my keen powers of observation.
“I’ve been violated and I didn’t even know it!” I whispered to my bar-code free pajama pants.
Sure, they say it’s to make sure my ten dollar blouse doesn’t end up in the hands of a serial dry cleaning thief. But I know better.
The terrorists are tracking my clothing.
That way, when I finally kick the bucket as a result of their food poisoning plot, and my husband gives away my clothes to someone, and the new someone brings them in to be cleaned, and the terrorist/dry cleaner sees that someone else used to own those pants, and they call my house to let me know that my pants have been filched, and my husband lets them know that the pants are no longer mine because I am deceased due to forgetting that I’m not supposed to walk in front of cars going 65 miles an hour (and he assures the terrorist/dry cleaner that those are not the actual pants I was wearing when I met my demise), the terrorist/dry cleaner will be satisfied that the food poisoning plot is working just as planned and report this encouraging progress to the Head Honcho Terrorist with a cryptic tweet, like, “The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants wears control top panty hose.”
My husband seems to think this is a bit “of a reach”. Coincidentally, he uses a different dry cleaner. Who does not put bar codes in his pants.
So, clearly, I am sleeping with the enemy.
The plot thickens.
My husband, the Long Suffering Cap’n Firepants, and I (the Just as Long and Sometimes Even More Suffering Mrs. Cap’n Firepants) had a bit of a tiff last night. I won’t go into details. Suffice it to say that he thought there was a miscommunication even though I had clearly communicated, and that him apologizing for misunderstanding my communication is not really an apology because it obviously implies that I was at fault for not clearly communicating. And I think we can all agree that I am a fabulous communicator.
But I am not a very good prognosticator.
I was at school today, and the secretary called on the intercom to see if I could send someone to the office to pick up a package. I didn’t have students at the time, so I told her I would send one as soon as they returned.
Of course, I forgot.
“Mrs. Cap’n Firepants, can you send someone down to the office now?” Obviously the secretary really wanted me to come get that package. I wondered what it was. I hadn’t ordered anything. Then I realized what was happening.
“Cap’n Firepants sent me flowers to apologize, and the secretary is really eager to brighten my day,” I thought. “He is so forgiven!” I immediately drafted a student to pick up my special delivery. I couldn’t wait to see my surprise.
The door opened.
“What is it?” I asked expectantly, as soon as the student entered. I couldn’t see what was in his hands because I was on the other side of the room.
“Balls,” he said.
I apparently couldn’t hear what he said because I was on the other side of the room.
“Eyeballs,” he said, as he approached me.
And then I remembered. I had ordered something. Sheep eyeballs for my 3rd graders to dissect.
The students cheered with excitement as I dejectedly looked down at the jar that the secretary had been so eager to get off her desk. The jar of a dozen eyeballs that was supposed to be a dozen roses. The jar of eyeballs that I forgot I had ordered – my forgetfulness obviously due to the trauma of being falsely accused of mis-communicating. The jar of eyeballs that used to belong to sheep that had now become the worst Un-apology ever.
He is so not forgiven.
“Did you call?” my husband asked.
“Yes, but it’s too late now.”
I could hear the alarm in his response, even though it was only one syllable – “Oh?”
“Well, yes. We’re already home. I was calling to see if you thought we should get Wonderbutt a life jacket because we were at Petsmart.”
“Well, how much are they?”
“Oh, you don’t understand. I already bought him the life jacket. You didn’t answer so I just made an executive decision.”
“But it doesn’t fit. It was a medium. So, we’re going back. We’re going to take him with us this time so he can try it on.”
I could tell that my husband was extremely thankful that I was taking care of all of this without his involvement. Because: A) The thought of buying a life jacket for our bulldog seems about as logical as buying a kayak for a T-Rex, and Dos) trying to get Wonderbutt to try on different sized life jackets in the middle of a store registers about a 9.5 on his Ways-That-I-Refuse-To-Humiliate-Myself Scale.
So, well aware that my husband thought that we might as well build our dog a float out of crisp dollar bills for all of the good a life jacket would do, I toted Wonderbutt and my daughter to Petsmart for our bright orange fashion show.
Predictably, we immediately gained an admiring audience of Petsmart customers as I struggled to fit Wonderbutt into the next size up. It had to be explained to everyone that he likes to swim, but tires pretty quickly – usually when he has just made it to the deepest part of the pond.
Wonderbutt is short. But what he lacks in height, he definitely makes up for in rotundity. So, even the Large jacket was no match for his girth. We had to purchase the X-Large for him – the one with a very fit looking labrador on its packaging. I found this slightly embarrassing, but Wonderbutt did not seem disturbed by this in the least. Perhaps this was because he had absolutely no intention of keeping the thing on for more than 5 seconds.
“This isn’t going to work, is it?” my daughter asked, as we stood in line to check out, and Wonderbutt managed to wrestle the life jacket off his back and on to the ground.
“Sure it will,” I replied confidently. Okay, maybe not exactly confidently.
Back in the car, I watched as Wonderbutt got in the back and proceeded to attack the life jacket with the zest he usually reserves for eating carpets or sofa cushions.
I looked at my daughter, whose eyebrows were raised.
I closed the door and got in the front seat. Already, the buyer’s remorse was beginning to sink in. I pondered my possibly expensive mistake, then turned around to speak to my daughter.
“Uh, just make sure he doesn’t eat the receipt, okay?” I said.
And so Wonderbutt’s next adventure began…