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Inspirational Reads

Don't Laugh at My Shame!

January 21, 2009

Since it got cold last night...cold enough to counteract the colligative affect imparted by the brine/salt mixture thrown on the roads yesterday...everything froze up nice and solid. Therefore, the roads and such were too hazardous during the usual morning crush and my employer delayed opening by two hours.

Have I mentioned how much I fricking love my job?

It was so effing nice to by able to lay in bed this morning until 8:30 with the sultry breath of a half-naked redhead on the back of my neck. Yes, even when she's sighing at me over a lousy pun or pissed because I ate the last chocolate cookie, it's sultry. Most everything a redhead does is inherently sultry.

Still, when I finally rolled out of the house this morning at 9:15, it was 24 degrees F. And I shivered.

There used to be a time in my life when I would look 24 in the eye, whip my junk out, and wave it tauntingly at Old Man Winter. Six years of living in the South (just the South...not the Deep South) has softened me to marshmallow consistency. Much below 30 and I'm a quivering mass of jelly that doesn't want a thing to do with the outdoors. Unless there's nekkid chicks, but since most of them are marshmallow soft, too, that doesn't happen too often.

The first winter that we were married, back around the turn of the century, my wife and I came down to Charlotte to spend a week with her parents around the Christmas holiday. We had just left behind 48 inches of snow in South Bend from the blizzard that had hit us about two weeks prior (I think the blizzard dumped 24-28 inches on us, but that particular December had seen 48 inches of snow) and while it was cold in Charlotte, it wasn't as cold as it was in South Bend.

One day during the break, we went to one of the malls in Charlotte, and I was decked out in my winter attire. However, that day it got up to almost 40, and I was dying. I finally stripped down to just a t-shirt and my jeans and was finally comfortable. I remember steam coming off my head when I took my sock-cap off. It was sweet relief. Besides that, a steaming head is badass.

Now, the thought of a t-shirt in 40 degree weather sends chills throughout my body. I think my feet got colder just thinking about it.

That, however, was not the least I've ever worn on a winter's day. When I was in my first semester at ND, I was living alone in an apartment about two miles from campus. It was pleasant enough, though my neighbors were say the least. One night, though, I decided I was going to do some laundry, so I spent the afternoon carting my stuff back and forth from my place to the community laundry room. It was mildly annoying, but I figured the walking was good for me. As I was putting my last load of clothes in, the washer wasn't completely full, so I figured I'd man-worn my jeans enough and stripped them off right there and tossed them in the wash. I gathered up my stuff and walked back to my apartment to find that I had thrown the lock on the way out.

With my keys still in the apartment.

And my pants in the wash.

I tried my best to kick or bash the door in but--remember the neighborhood was sketchy--the lock was pretty strong. While I felt safer that I wasn't going to be murdered in my sleep anytime soon, I was not looking forward to weathering the night on the floor in front of my door until the maintenance guys came to work the next morning. It was $20 if you had to call them after hours to let you in. I had no cash in my wallet, which was also inside the apartment.

I realized that there was one thing I would have to do. Some of my friends were having a little dinner party at a friend's apartment near campus. I opted for laundry and watching the Indiana/Ohio State game that night instead of the party, but I was planning on showing up for movie time. However, I knew that my only hope now rested in crashing the party.

I did have my shoes on, which was a damned good thing since there was 8 inches of snow on the ground. So, I set down my laundry basket (which was full of towels and other non-pants items) and, in my underwear, started walking to campus. From time to time, I would get cold enough that I would start running, but running in the cold night air when you're an asthmatic is not conducive to breathing. I would run as far as I could until I had to stop and walk. My lungs burned with inflammation; my skin burned with the cold; my humility just burned.

Now, I've never had a problem with being less than fully-clad, we'll say, much to the chagrin of most everyone in the world. However, I do take issue with being in just my undies while it's somewhere around 15-20 degrees.

I learned that night that South Bend cops could give a fuck less about your needs when they have their sights set on Nick's Patio, the local greasy spoon. What, stop and help the guy who is running in his underwear and waving his arms and gesticulating madly for me to help him, when there's biscuits and gravy that I could be shoving in my gob? You're on your own, fatboy. You could probably use the exercise, anyway.
So, I showed up at the party in my underwear and a t-shirt. I'll just toss in here that the dinner party-goers...all women. Except for my friend Jeff, one of the few Red Sox fans not named Karp that I can stand.

Here's my soliloquy that I gave when I got to the door, somewhat sweaty and panting:

"I locked myself out while doing laundry." *pant pant* "Don't ask." *pant pant* "Can I borrow $20 from someone?" *pant pant wheeze* "I'll pay you back." *pant pant wheeze wheeze* "If you're not watching anything, can I watch the Indiana game?" *wheeze*


Fortunately, after they ate and before we started the movie, Jeff lent me the cash and drove my sorry ass back to my apartment and hung out while I waited for the maintenance guy to show up...who lived in the next apartment building over. Fuck him. Having secured some pants and a warmer shirt, I returned to the party and watched Office Space. A couple of the ladies felt sorry for me and huddled/cuddled up to me to keep me warm.

That was the night I triumphed over Old Man Winter, not only successfully braving the cold and snow, but also I got cuddled on by a couple of reasonably attractive ladies to help "warm me up."

These days, though, I'll just take the ladies.


red said...

Where, oh, where is my redhead loving dude? le sigh

That's a pretty awesome story, btw. Glad you had your sports watching priorities straight.

Candy's daily Dandy said...

OH yes!!! That was so thoroughly entertaining..

I have but two questions,
1. Why didn't you wrap a towel around your legs? One of the ones that were in your laundry basket and other "non-pants items".


2. I'm a Red Sox fan and my name is not Karp-How you like me now???

LYDIA said...

Great story....

Now I miss Mad Men

Mathdude said...

Well done sir.

My buddy who went to Northern Illinois came home from college at Christmas once in NY and walked his dog in 0 degrees in shorts b/c it was so "warm" compared to the Illinois winter. Lesson learned on the laundry thing, though, I hope.

Giggle Pixie said...

Should've just walked into Nick's Patio and asked one of those fat-assed cops for a ride. :-)

Sassy Britches said...

You never did clarify: were said undies tighty whiteys?

Susan said...

My hub just suprised the kids last weekend in 10 degree weather and a foot of snow by running out in shorts ONLY (barefeet and all) to join them sledding in the backyard! You coudn't pay me enough for the shitty cold torture! PS...assuming your current wife was NOT one of the women at the party that night, right???

Gwen said...

Oh, jenks, how am I supposed to hold back from laughing at that? Classic!

BeckEye said...

Thank God for underpants, eh?

Ashley said...

I also think red heads are HOT. I have girl crushes on them.

:) We share that.

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

@ red: I can share some of my love for redheads with you. For a small monthly fee. Bad economy and all, gotta try and find extra income everywhere. Thanks.

@ Candy: 1) I was a bachelor. These weren't exactly the kind of towels that would be thick enough to fend off the cold. Plus, I figured I'd have to run at some point, and didn't think towels wrapped around my legs would help with that. 2) I said "one of". You're in that group, too. Plus, I've given you plenty of hell for your Bostonocentric sports love.

@ Lydia: I aim to please, ma'am.

@ Mathdude: Definitely learned. I kind of panic ever since if I don't have my keys with me whenever I go anywhere. And, fortunately that night I locked myself out, there wasn't much wind and it wasn't snowing any more on me as I dashed for help.

@ Giggle Pixie: By the time I got to Nick's, I was only about a block or so from my friend's apartment. She lived in those apartments behind the old Martin's there off Ironwood, so I figured it wasn't worth the hassle.

@ Sassy Britches: They were boxers, and, fortunately, there was a button on the flap so I wasn't too indecent. They were also flannel, so my cheeks were somewhat warm.

@ Susan: He's a man's man. I walked my wife to the car the other night before it snowed in just my undies...and black socks! Also, no, my wife was not at the party. This was actually a couple of months before I met her.

@ Gwen: No need to hold back. Feel free to laugh at my shame.

@ Beckeye: And thank God I'm not gross and like to go commando. In jeans, at least.

@ Ashley: If the Neanderthals gave us nothing else, it was at least red hair. Okay, so it was more than just the Neanderthals, but still...

Alex Galvez said...

Thanks for following my blog!

Scope said...

Well, that explains the story T-Bone tells me about the time he was over by his grandma's (on Cleveland between Juniper and Dixie) when he was this dude running down the street in just his drawers. (Okay, not really.)

But after the sofa story, he did mention that your screen name looked familiar from some of the ND boards he reads. I found that highly amusing.

Out of fear of having the same thing happen to me, I am obsessive about always having my keys, and the the "auto-lock" features on my doors are disabled. Unless I key lock it, it's not locked. (College - shower room down the hall - roommate left early for class - roommate's remains never recovered by authorities - Scope get's A's for the semester.)

Jim said...

See? Isn't she lovely?

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

@ Alex: It's my pleasure. Allows me a place to vent.

@ Scope: I wasn't that far north. I actually lived closer to downtown. The river was maybe two blocks south of me? I went from Jefferson north on Ironwood toward Douglas.

@ Jim: Oh, I knew about her, thanks in large part to red and McGone. Just to let you know, the curtains don't match the carpet, if you catch my drift.

Scope said...

I would say I was, "pulling your chain" but due to the nature of this post, I'm not going there.

Just thought I'd toss in a little SB/M cred there.

But, back at the time of the couch story, T-Bone said that he did recognize you screen name from some of the ND boards he reads.