Thursday, October 18, 2012

A tale of Wiener dog racing, Cemetery walking, Cthulhu Worshiping, Animal Blessing, Oktoberfest, Temper Tantrums, Gravity Falls, Freaks & Geeks and protecting the world from the six-fingered hand of alien domination.

I was going to post about our weekend, but Jen went ahead and wrote the post that I was going to write. (There are two Jens in this story. The Jen I am married to is Jen Classic and the one who came to visit us is Kenobi Jen.)

The weekend started on a bleak note. The services for Nick, my friend and old boss, were on Friday night, and I headed over to the funeral home right after work. It was tougher than I had been expecting. Funerals are never easy, but the thing that really chokes me up is when the departed is surrounded by the things they loved in life. For Lily's grandfather, it was a picture of her. For Nick, it was Halloween napkins and comic book stuff. I don't know why that saddens me like it does. Maybe it's the juxtaposition, or the knowledge that they will never be around to enjoy the things they loved. I don't know.

I always think of a line from Slaughterhouse-Five that reminds me that we'll always have the memories of the people who are gone.

The most important thing I learned on Tralfamadore was that when a person dies he only appears to die. He is still very much alive in the past, so it is very silly for people to cry at his funeral. All moments, past, present and future, always have existed, always will exist. The Tralfamadorians can look at all the different moments just that way we can look at a stretch of the Rocky Mountains, for instance. They can see how permanent all the moments are, and they can look at any moment that interests them. It is just an illusion we have here on Earth that one moment follows another one, like beads on a string, and that once a moment is gone it is gone forever.

So I said my goodbyes to Nick.

After that, the happy part of our weekend began. As the title suggests, it included Wiener dog racing, Cemetery walking, Cthulhu Worshiping, Animal Blessing, Oktoberfest, Temper Tantrums, Gravity Falls, Freaks & Geeks and protecting the world from the six-fingered hand of alien domination.

Our original plan was to head to the PA Ren Faire, but it turned out to be a bit further away than we had thought, and it was pricey to boot. So we settled on something almost as fun, but much less expensive.

Jen Classic, Kenobi Jen and I all went out for Indian at the place that had catered Lily's culture night. They were pretty decent. To hear Kenobi Jen tell it, she lives in some kind of post apocalyptic wasteland and subsists on gruel and and whatever roots she can forage. We all enjoyed the meal. Oma came to drop off Lily halfway through and we had an impromptu round of My Little Pony trivia. Kenobi Jen claims, over at her blog, that Lily won the contest, but that's just bullshit. Only Bill Clinton and Batman know more about My Little Pony than I do. I happen to know that she was hopped up on goofballs when she wrote that post anyway.

We returned home and watched some Gravity Falls. I stayed up a little later to play some of the new XCOM game. I loved the old one and while the new one didn't retain everything I loved about the old one, I don't think it has a single element that I don't enjoy tremendously.

Then we woke up in time to go the local Farmer's Market. Lily was moaning about going, but I don't know why. There are always a million dogs there and she gets to pet every single one.

After that, we headed to SteelStacks for their Oktoberfest and Wiener Dog Races. Jen Classic noticed that there were some people watching the races from a sparsely populated gallery, so we made our way up there.

Here's a picture if you think this was some elaborate troll about wiener dog races.

Apparently, too, wiener dogs are known by some other name sometimes, but I'm not one of your highfalutin' professors of dog-ology, so I couldn't tell you.

Then we went home and had some falafel and couscous and watched a little Avatar. Lily had a bit of tantrum, and while that's always embarassing, I'm sometimes kind of of grateful for it too, so my friends don't think we have this perfect little child.

Kenobi Jen was supposed to show me a good Matt Smith episode, but she was unable to find one, so we skipped it for now. Lily went to bed and got a bedtime story from all three grownups. Jen and Jen and I played a little Taboo, which was fun, (We didn't have the buzzer, so we just took turns reading off the cards) and we watched some Freaks and Geeks and I remembered why I fell in love with the show.

On Sunday, we went to Jen's church. She had a meeting before the service started, so Kenobi Jen and Lily and I walked around a local cemetery. Lily read three paragraphs of rules off the sign before losing interest, which is about two paragraphs more than most people.

We were at this particular service because it was their annual blessing of the animals. Because this was a Unitarian Church, in addition to the usual cats and dogs and birds, parishioners brought shoggoths and byakhee and mi-go. Somebody even brought Ghroth, but he had to stay out in the foyer.

It was a pretty fun visit. I'm glad that Jen was able to make it to see us.


  1. It was a fun weekend. You don't have to be ashamed that Lily knows more about My Little Pony than you do.

  2. Sounds like a fabulous weekend! I'd love to take pictures of those steel stacks. They look really cool. Next time we'll all have to do something :)

  3. Karen, I said the same thing about the steel stacks. I forgot my camera. And yes, we all need to get together.