Don’t Eat The Coffee Table
To say that our family is dysfunctional is probably an understatement. I don’t mean that in a bad way; we just tend to, shall we say, ‘color outside the lines’ when it comes to family decorum. We’re just not like normal people. Furniture and belongings lie carefully arranged in haphazard disarray, strewn about in the decor of Early Sanitorium. Life, like our yard, has all the organization of a game of 52 card pick-up. And we’re comfortable with it that way.
Welcome to my world!
It’s a control freaks’ worst nightmare. Go ahead and leave your propriety outside the door with your shoes – you’re not going to need either here. I don’t want to imply that we’re crazy but then I’m pretty sure Mr. Rogers would soon have traded in his sweater for a straight-jacket.
Our family unit consists of one wife, a husband, three kids, and one neurotic Great Dane. Me? I’m the husband. Or as my wife normally refers to me, child number 4. I hesistate to use the words ‘family‘ and ‘unit‘ in the same sentence because the word unit somehow implies cohesiveness and cooperation, neither of which are likely to be seen around here.
And then there’s Cletus! Cletus is our somewhat neurotic dog; six foot, 120 pounds of Great Dane. As soon as I walk through the door, my wife cheerfully greets me with her usual sullen glare while our somber-faced, super-sized canine co-habitant struggles to extract himself from the couch. Don’t let the frown fool you! Someone’s glad to see me and I’m about to get my usual obligatory ten minute greeting, a ‘welcome home’ hug, whether I want it or not. No, not from my wife! I was talking about a hug from my Cletus! In contrast, my wife is a little less exhuberant at my arrival.
Yep. That’s her! Right where I left her…in the recliner.
Back to my hug! Six foot of over-grown canine-delinquet is fixing to rear up on two legs, put his paws across my shoulders, and stare down at me…with an accusing look of, “How could you have left me?!!” He stares at me with his best guilt-inducing look. On the Seinfeld Scale of Neuroses, I estimate him to be somewhere midway between a Newman and a Kramer.
The kids, three boys -all grown- tend to filter in sometime after they all get off work. The closer you get to supper the more likely they are to show up, in no particular order. That’s us! Me, the wife, three boys, and Cletus. Did I already mention that Cletus is our somewhat neurotic dog?
Number three son just pulled up in the driveway. You can tell it’s him by the loud muffler on his truck. That, and him blowing that old airhorn on his truck he found in the garage last week. But hey! That’s what boys do! Cletus is barking at the commotion outside, or is it the commotion inside? I can’t tell?!! Momma’s fussin’ at the dog and number three son for disturbing the neighbors; while I focus on more important things, like watching the next contestant get clobbered on a TV game show. At supper time, we all gather ’round the TV trays and gobble down macaroni & cheese or left-over pizza.
Look out, somebody just knocked over a TV tray. Nacho’s are gone everywhere! Put down that broome, that’s what the dog is for!
“Cletus! Cletus! Don’t eat the coffee table!”
Sorry ’bout the outburst, folks! Don’t fret now, it’s just a normal night at home. Yep, that’s us, alright! We’re drawn to mayhem like a celebrity to rehab. Next to us, Monday night rasslin’ looks like a state dinner at the White House (I never have understood those affairs). That’s where we try to impress all those heads-of-state from places that nobody can pronounce where nobody likes us anyway; by throwing away a whole lotta’ good money on a big shin-dig for folks who don’t care.
Well, I hope you enjoyed your visit here. Sorry about the dog chewing a hole in your shoe. Hope that nervous twitch gets better! Come by and visit again when you can stand more of us.