Monday, March 24, 2014

Spring Break Past, Present, and Future

     Spring Break is here!  School is out, and the kids are home with dear old dad.  This time around we've got back up here, because Grandma and Grandpa are down from Wisconsin.  This takes the heat off of me for a little while, and the kids love spending time with their grandparents.  Well, in my spare time I began to think about all the Spring Break's of past years.  Boy, how things have changed.  Spring Break from 20 something years ago is much different than Spring Break of today, and I'll bet  Spring Break 20 something years from now will be even more different.  To quote day time television's greatest show ever, "Like sands through the hourglass so are the Days of our Lives."  Don't lie, you've watched Bo and Hope a time or two.  While I was in this state of mind I thought I would write a few things down about Spring Break, past, present, and future.  So, enjoy your taste of the warm weather to come.  Sit on the beach with a cold drink in hand or just chill anywhere you can.  Soak it up, because it'll be gone before you know it.

     Lets see, about 25 years ago I was hanging in good old Panama City Beach, Florida for Spring Break.  The trip was eventful and included changing hotel rooms for undisclosed reasons, toting an oversize cooler for what felt like 10 miles, a bottle busted on the head of a good friend of mine, and an unfortunate Body Glove spandex incident.  The names will be withheld to protect the guilty, but we had a blast!  I would never want my children to do the things that I have done, and I chalk it up to the times.  It's just like the people that lived before the automobile.  They didn't drive cars.  Same thing about the folks that were around before Television.  They didn't watch TV.  Well, we didn't have any sense, so we didn't use any.  Panama City was always the destination of choice for any beach getaway, and my friends and I had cornered the market on cheap accommodations.  For example, the Bahama Motel was about $20 a night, and came with a color television, running water, and even had pets already in place for your enjoyment, although you wouldn't want to pet them.  All inclusive it was not, but how much time do you really spend in a hotel room at the beach anyway?  Especially when you're 18 years old.  I suppose I can tell these stories, because the statute of limitations is surely up on crimes against good and normalcy.  Not that we were that bad mind you, but a little reckless and rebellious for sure.  We were like many young people of the time, wannabe renegades with restless spirits in search of a certain meaning and direction for our lives.  Well, that's just a poetic way of saying we were young, stupid, and made a whole lot of mistakes.  Fun mistakes at times, but still mistakes none the less.  What would I do if I had to do it all over again?  Probably the same thing minus any intoxicating substances.  Do away with the bad stuff and have fun.  I am anti-alcohol/drugs these days, and looking back we probably could have had just as much fun without all that garbage.  Who knows, maybe more fun.

     Spring Break this very week is a rocking and rolling adventure!  I've been watching TV Land, and my days have consisted of Gunsmoke, Bonanza, Andy Griffith, and Gilligan's Island.  I like to walk on the wild side, and live on the edge.  Don't hate.  I have discovered that TV Land programming during the day has commercials that are geared toward a select audience.  I have to sit through commercials about comfortable lubricated catheters, reverse mortgages, adjustable back braces that are easily hidden under clothing, and the advantages of life insurance for not leaving the burden of funeral expenses for your loved ones.  I think that I would fit right in with over 80 set, and we seem to like the same television programming. Well it does make you wonder if this is what I have to look forward to:  catheters, running out of money, a bad back, and death.  TV Land commercials aside I have enjoyed watching my boy Jesse play some baseball, and I love to watch him play!  I love me some baseball, and that is mainly because of my wonderful son and his exploits on the baseball diamond.  We are fortunate this year, because we are making a transition into a different league and skill level of baseball, and the kids, parents, and coaches are top notch people all the way around.  We're looking forward to more good times around good people and good baseball!

     I have to say what I look forward to least during times like Spring Break is food preparation.  Especially if I am the only one doing said food preparation.  My past reads like a Stephen King tale of horror when it comes to cooking or anything to do with feeding my children.  I can pre-heat an oven with the best of them and I am the King of all things Microwavable, but that is about the extent of it.  Maddie survived on Milk, Mac and Cheese, Sweet Potatoes, and Cinnamon Toast Crunch for the first 3 years of her life.  I have been known to mix up a concoction of yogurt and bananas and call it my "Banana Surprise."  The other day I made Jesse a fine Roast Beef and Swiss sandwich that I was really proud of, but he wasn't a fan.  He said, "Dad, I don't like this."  I asked him, "Why, Jesse it's really good."  He replied, "I thought when you said Roast Beef you meant Arby's."  I looked him in the eye and said, "How in the heck am I supposed to come up with an Arby's Roast Beef sandwich in our kitchen?"  Jesse confidently told me, "You can do it.  I look up to you Daddy."  As if that would make any difference at all.  I ate the rest of his sandwich.  It was good, but it sure wasn't Arby's Roast Beef.

     What will happen in the Spring Break of the future?  I'll set the scene for you about 20 years in the future.  My lovely wife and I will be residing somewhere in the Caribbean.  We like to call our home the Oasis, and it was bought and paid for after the publication of my first novel, "Tales from the Dadside."  I'm kind of a big deal in the future.  Jesse has become the first ever Professional Baseball/Football player who moonlights as a Brain Surgeon and Nuclear Physicist.  We're extremely proud.  He is married to a Victoria's Secret model who is also a member of MENSA.  They have four beautiful children 2 boys (Chris Jr., and Chris III) and 2 girls (Christy and Christina.)  They come down to the Perry Compound every Spring Break to see us.  Madison Leigh, my lovely daughter, also visits us every Spring.  You may have heard of her, she is the first ever Woman President who also is an MMA fighter when she's not handling national and international business.  Nobody could tell her she couldn't be President, and fight in a cage.....so she did them both.  That's just how she rolls.  She never married though, because I could never find a man good enough for my little girl.  Well, that part is probably more fantasy than any of the rest of it, but the sentiment is definitely true.  I surely hope my Spring Break of the future turns out like the above description, and my kids don't end up in Panama City at the Bahama Motel getting beer bottles busted on their heads.  I hope and pray.  Happy Spring Break!