Big Doin's

First, that’s not an 's. The apostrophe is to show I dropped the “g” in “doing”. It’s a colloquialism. Although, I guess there could be a guy (or girl) named (hopefully the last name) “Doin”, and they could be a large person, so everyone calls them (since it’s really could be a boy or a girl I don’t want to say “he”) “Big” and this could be all about “Big Doin’s” fire truck or something. But it’s not. It’s just about some things that happened. Sorta. You’ll see.

Friday morning I took Soupo to the dentist. (No cavities!) They have a new office now that’s farther away, but easier to get to. All that means is it takes, like, two minutes less to get to. Which is nice. So I have that extra two minutes to get all those things done I was hoping to do before we get to the dentist. But the new office isn’t right next to the laundromat. So I can’t wash up the comforter while I’m getting my teeth cleaned. So, as you can see, it’s a trade-off. (They’re also putting in a new laundromat in here in town. Along with our two check cashing places, the rental furniture place, Big Lots, and our 15 nail and hair places, we’re pretty happening.)

Then I dropped Soupo at Grandma’s (Katcha was already there. I dropped him off before the dentist excursion.) and called my brother (Skippy) and had him meet me at my house and we went off for a weekend of camping adventure. (He brought his dog too, so there was the three of us.) The park we decided on was a ways out, so we had a car ride to get through. We sang songs and played car games and by the time we were out of the driveway we were about done with that crap, so we just rode along (I took my traditional passenger role) chatting.

When we hit the trail head, we slung on our packs and headed off into the woods. Tra-la-la! We are big outdoorsy men! Tra-la-la! We both over-packed for the trip, we’re too used to car camping. But he went “hurngph!” when he put his pack on and I didn’t. So I was ahead on points already.

The trail to our first campsite (we were staying two nights, so we’d have two campsites total) followed a stream. Only it just didn’t follow it, it crossed over, a couple of times. The first few crossings were dry, so it was real easy to get across. The last crossing there was water in the stream bed. Not a lot or anything, there wasn’t much chance of us drowning, but there was some, so we had to be careful and walk across the rocks. If we missed a rock it wouldn’t be tragic, we’d just get our feet a little wet and maybe out pants a little too. But it was the challenge. Get all the way across the creek without falling off the rocks and getting wet. I went first. And I made it! Woo! for me!

Then it was Skippy’s turn. He made it about halfway across (like two steps) when his dog saw something (you know dogs, it could have been a leaf or a turtle or something threatening like a squirrel) and she went tearing across the stream. Splashity splash splash, right through the water, splashing Skippy and knocking him off his rock. Ha ha! Now I’m two points up. Only, while I was gloating and mocking my brother, I slipped on the bank and got my pants leg all muddy. So I was only one point up.

We got to the campsite and settled in. Up with the tents and drew some water and collected some wood and just generally made ourselves comfortable. This is about when I thought I should have just sucked it up and brought real limes for my rum instead of the plastic lime with the reconstituted lime juice, but by then it was too late. We said something about looking into “leave no trace” camping. Then we threw some more wood on our fire. It was a good night.

A tradition we have car camping is rip bread. A large loaf of sourdough bread we eat by ripping off hunks. It’s especially good with pepperoni. Chop chunks of pepperoni off the stick and rip off big hunks of bread. It’s good that way. Only rip bread would get all smashed in our packs. So that was out. I found a recipe for hard bread and made that up. We we happy with it, getting a geeky calling it cram, until we ate some. It burned nice though. The foil wrappers from our little chocolate eggs left over from Easter burned pretty too. They changed the flame color of the fire. (Sometimes it’s the little things that bring the most joy.)

By a babbling stream is supposed to be one of the best places to camp. It just makes me have to pee. But on the upside, that meant I was up earlier than I planned the next day. I got to see the fox scamper out of the woods and though out camp and back down the trail.

After breakfast, we struck camp and moved on down the trail to the next campsite. Only it was up the trail. Way up the trail. This was one big hill we had to schlep up. That wasn’t so much fun.

But we get to campsite number two, and set up again. Then we go wandering around down the trail. There’s an old family cemetery off a little ways and we went to see it. Some of the stones were from before the Civil War. A little taste of history. But we were real careful not to learn anything. We’re just that way.

When we got back to camp, there was another group there too. No big deal, it was a big-ish clearing and they were all the way to the other side. Two tents that looked like what you’d want if you were climbing mountains in the winter. One of the boys (there were two boys and two girls, a couple of couples) was mad that his beer was warm. Skippy tried to be helpful and tell him to soak his beer in the pond. It wouldn’t be icey cold, but it’d be better than nothing. The boy was a little grumbley at us, so we left them to themselves.

We had our dinner and started our evening fire. (It was still early in the season, there was a lot of downed wood around.) Boy One and Boy Two were having a time starting their fire. We invited them to share ours, but they just grumbled again. Girl One and Girl Two didn’t seem real pleased with their dates right about then. When we got the popcorn (Jiffy Pop™, can’t beat it!) going they came over to check things out. (Ooh look! They have popcorn! And a dog! I told you we could have brought my dog!) Boys One and Two came over to make sure we weren’t trying anything. So the Girls made them go and get the wood they had for their fire and put it in our pile. More grumbling, but the Girls had had enough of them, so in the end, they did what they were told. It was a little funny watching the Boys wiggle in, being sure to put themselves between us and the Girls. It was more funny when Boy Two wasn’t watching what he was doing and sat on Skippy’s dog’s tail and she barked at him and really scared him. (There was more grumbling after that.)

After a while, the rum was gone and the fire was burning low and it was time for bed. Skippy and I hied ourselves to our respective tents and Girls One and Two and Boys the same went off to their side of the camp. There seemed to be a short discussion about the sleeping arrangements. Then there was giggling from one tent and grumbling from the other. I’m not sure, I could have been dreaming.

The next morning, Skip and I broke camp, got back to the car and went home. A fine time had.

Only that never happened. Maybe it did, but only by Rue of the Alternative Reality. (That’s where I have a van Dyke and crush my enemies without remorse. The next Alternative Reality over has a more Viking feel to it. We knifed the Boys in the ribs and took their women for our sport. I’m not sure where the volleyball net came from. The Alternative Reality after that, the girls were vampires and killed us all in our sleep. If you go three Alternative Realities after that an down one, you get to a world where the earth is molten and the air is rolling clouds of acid. That place isn’t so nice.) Around here, starting Friday afternoon, it rained like pouring piss from a boot. (My favorite weather simile.) So we didn’t go. But we did reschedule for two weeks hence.

I did get a few errands run Saturday. One of them was finding (and putting together) a new TV stand for the bedroom. Stopping in K-Mart (which was a wash, but I figured it would be, I was just waiting for the “Put It Together Yourself Furniture Store”- not it’s real name- to open) I saw a gumball machine in the vestibule. Only instead of gumballs, you could get “Hillbilly Teeth”. Rubber teeth you can put over you own and make them look all gnarly and gross. “Hillbilly Teeth” you can buy at K-Mart. Ironic.

Saturday evening we had a Sib Dinner. That was nice. Everyone came over and we had pizza. My sister brought dessert, strawberries and whipped cream. The whipped cream you squirt out of the can. I squirted a glob of whipped cream into my Coke. Like a Coke float only with whipped cream instead of ice cream. Half the people thought it was gross (the girls), the other half (the boys) thought it was a good idea.

My sister said “How can you do something like that?” Then she squirted a spoon full of whipped cream and ate it.

That’s what really happened.

You must be some sort of ubermensch hero type of guy.

I got tired just reading that.

Well, I’m glad I read all the way to the end. 'Cause[sup]*[/sup] I was wondering where the heck you found dry firewood anywhere within a day’s drive of our little neck of the woods. BTW, I found an idea for a really manly thing to do on the way to visitSophie[sup]**[/sup].

[sup]*'Cause is another one of those colockwyial things[/sup]
**I tried to nest two URLs here but it didn’t seem to work so they are just stacked next to each other.

Skippy DeDay? I don’t get it…

No, no, no Snickers, Skippy is Rue’s brother by marriage. His middle name is Bruce and his last name is Nanna. Skippy B. Nanna. Right, Rue?

I think Rue also has a sister named CeeCee. Everybody calles her TwoCees for short.

Signed: Carpy D. Humm.

“Skippy” is just a bit of Real Life oozing in. I really call him “Skippy”. Ever since he was little. Now he’s used to it.

Sorry, no clever joke.


Ya know, you don’t need to do anything spectacularly manly to visit me. I mean, you can if you want to, but it’s up to you. You could, for instance, bring the chitlins down for Dead Elvis Week in August with Smoochie.

No, you can’t stay at my house.

It ain’t because I don’t love ya, though. It’s just a small house.

Dawg, I forgot to mention this: we’ll be going to someplace called Tallmadge, Ohio later this summer. Is that close to you guys at all?

<sigh> Well, I’m not really disappointed. I mean, you can’t be clever all the time, can you? <sigh>

[sub] ya know I’m just yankin’ yer chain, right??[/sub]

We’re in Southwest Ohio. It’s gotta be impractical to NOT come through this way to almost any other place in Ohio. Unless you come by plane.

Very good explanation, there, Zappo.

Even though it’s not the real one, I think it’s a good one.

And I LOVE the idea of rip bread and pepperoni.

The upside being that you’re outside, in the open air, if you catch my drift…

Mammoth Cave is pretty interesting actually if you like a big hole in the ground. Rather a ginormous hole. I don’t think any of the state of Ky sits on solid ground. Someday we’ll probably all vanish into the vast limestone caverns with nary a sound and be forgotten for eternity.

Sorry. Mondays sorta get me down. I actually had a cheerier reply typed up but the network ate it. Something about camping and bugs in the shower, but I forget. Anyhoo…

Would you believe that I actually grew up about 30 miles from Mammoth Cave but never went there until I was an adult? Just never thought about it I guess.

I try not to think.

I’m quite successful so far.

Holy crap! I dated a guy for a long time who is from Tallmadge. And then, when we broke up, I dated a friend of his, also for a long time, also from Tallmadge! I spent a lot of time there when I was in college and grad school.

Unfortunately, I’m nowhere near there, now.

The cave tour I linked to lasts 6.5 hours. Your chest can’t be more than 42 inches or you’ll get stuck. They give you the little hats with the flashlights on top. Methinks this is somewhere out of the big chambers and into the dank, dark recesses where the dark things lurk. Wheeee!

42 inches?? Well, I didn’t wanna go caving like that anyway…

Now you’re just bragging.

You know what goes really well with rip bread and pepperoni, Scout? Cheddar cheese. (Yes Ex, the secret is the cheese.) Now we just have to work in some beans and we are so Jake.

I think Sophie’s going to Cleveland and she’s embarassed, so she’s covering and saying “Tallmadge”. Exotic Tallmadge, the Vacationer’s Paradise. But that’s just my theory.

Sorry Shibb, your manly thing won’t do. My Charles Atlas-like physique won’t squish through the leetle holes in the ground. But if you’re really hyped on caves, there’s this one with a cafeteria at the bottom.

Sorry to hear Monday getting you down dwyr. How about rainy days? Then you’d be like that song “Big Rock Candy Mountain”.


Cheddar. Even better. (or would that be “beddar”?)
<Carpenters voice>

“Rainy days and Mondays always get me dooowwwwwnnnn…”

</Carpenters voice>

If you think I’m gonna fall for this cheap ploy to “prove” it to you, you got another think coming…

I was gonna say “42, my ass” but that’s being too kind to my ass…