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On Golden Memories Pond

January 29, 2009

Holy heapin' helpin's of crap! I heard about this guy on the radio this morning, all the way down here in North By God Carolina!

What's the connection? you might ask, aside from the link taking you to a South Bend television station. Well, the connection is that, for the first thirteen years of my life, my family owned lake cottages on Webster Lake, where the perp was busting into summer homes. I'm sort of wondering if I don't know the guy from Chicago that had his home busted into--and worse, had his beer drunk! Most of the people who lived on my side of the lake, though, were from other places in Indiana. There were only a few folks from out of state, but there was one big cottage that was owned by a guy from Chicago. They also had a couple of other cottages on the same landing. I think that those cottages were all set up for year-round living. The ones we owned weren't. We'd have to close them up by the first weekend in October, but then we'd open them again, usually the first or second weekend of April.

Throughout my childhood, we would go to the lake every weekend. Every effing weekend. We'd also go for at least one week, sometimes two, as a "vacation." I missed a bunch of baseball games and scouting events because we would be at the lake. I missed the championship game one year for my little league division and missed the all-star game two years in a row because we were at the lake. Ah, good times, good times.

Of course, by the time I got old enough that having a lake cottage was practical for some of my more nefarious needs, we had sold them. So there were no episodes of awkwardly making out and heavy petting in a car and me smoothly injecting "Hey, I know, we can drive somewhere and screw. There's a bed there and everything! I have a key!" into the conversation. Or there were some times in college when I wanted to be like "Fuck it all" and get out of there for a weekend, but I didn't want to go home, so I'd go to the lake cottage for a couple of days. This would have been a great place for my buddy The Brewer The Brewing Optometrist and I to escape, drink and fish when we were both home during the summers. Also, Webster was only about 45 minutes from ND's campus. If we had the cottages, it would have saved me some money in grad school. Money I could have put toward more Schlitz Malt Liquor. The Blue Bull, baby.

I realized that the taxes were probably pretty nasty, having a bunch of other properties and such, which is why we sold the places. A couple of times, when my wife and I were first married, we drove down to the old lake cottage and just sort of hung out for a bit because--especially in the fall--it was peaceful and beautiful. The last time we visited, our old cottage had been redone really nicely with a big deck and painted and everything.

The best memory, though, was when we first bought the place. We already owned one of the bigger cottages on the landing, but it was kind of tough trying to cram my mom and dad, me, my brother, my sister, my aunt and uncle, my two cousins and then my grandmother and sometimes my other grandfather into one place. In fact, it really sucked. Perish the thought that my other aunt and uncle and cousin would show up for a visit. So, my family bought a smaller two bedroom cottage with a front porch that was converted into a third bedroom. The great thing about the front-porch-turned-bedroom was that it was across the lane from the Dietz cottage and the bedroom had lots of windows. The Dietzes were a family from Indianapolis with about seventy four slutty teenage daughters who always sunbathed in very little bikinis--it was as if they were allergic to tan lines and were hellbent on not having any on their bodies. And the girls would always have equally as slutty and allergic to tan lines friends up for the weekends. As someone beginning the great adventure of puberty whose entire thought process surrounded trying to penetrate something, this was like St. Peter throwing the gates of heaven wide open. Good times, good times.
I digress. The best part of the buying process was that we walked through the cottage and my parents said, "Hey, looks nice. Smells kinda musty, but we'll clean that up." We bought the place, got the keys and went in. Still smelled kind of bad. The first thing we wanted to do was get out all the beds that the previous owners had left because, well, we really didn't want to sleep on someone else's mattresses that we really didn't know. Plus, they all kind of smelled raunchy. So, in the small bedroom, I helped my dad move the bed out, and when we finally tipped it up, my view of the room was blocked, but my dad suddenly screamed, "Ah, shit!"

"What is it?" I inquire, peeking around the mattress, only to see my dad standing amidst several piles of dogshit that had been cleverly hidden beneath the bed. Very calmly I looked up at my dad, whose head had turned purple with an unholy mixture of anger and gouts of unspoken profanities, and said, "Well, I guess that explains the smell."
My dad looked at me, the color drained from his face, and then he started laughing so hard tears streamed down his cheeks. He staggered while laughing and almost stepped in one of the piles. "Dad, watch out!" I yelled, almost reflexively, "Don't step in the dogshit!"

Again, my dad paused and looked at me, the color once more draining from his face. For a second, a pregnant silence hung in the air as I thought my tongue was about to be ripped from my head. Once more, gales of laughter followed the pause and my father carefully stepped around the doggy nuggets and held himself steady against the wall while he collected himself. Finally, calmly, he said, "Go get me a broom and dustpan. And don't say that word in front of your mother."
That was the first time I ever swore in front of one of my parents. To this day, it's one of my fondest memories of my formative years.

Edit: Changed the name of the post, because I didn't like the original one and this one, I thought, reflected the overall nature of the post more.

11 comments:

Chemgeek said...

I just can't get over it. That bastard drank their beer.

SouthernBelle said...

Haha, gross.

I also like the way you worked the slutty bikini sisters & illustrative photo into a story about dogshit.

Giggle Pixie said...

That guy had some stones, didn't he? Breaking into their place and DRINKING THEIR BEER? The nerve!!!!! lol

Will Shannon said...

Yeah, we would have had even more strange stories from college if you had access to a cottage on a lake.

Giles falling off of a pier...drinking forties in a bathing suit in the morning...Giles falling off of a boat...Shirts and skins speed fishing...Giles falling off of a water ski ramp.

It sounds like the place my grandparents had in Lake Geneva with more sluts and less assholes from the Northern Suburbs.

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

@ Chemgeek: This is one of those ways I'm for capital punishment. Steal something, cut off your hand; rape someone, cut off your dick; steal beer...OFF WITH THEIR HEADS!!!

@ SouthernBelle: I was originally just going to focus on the fact that I might have known the person affected by the break in and the humorous nature of hearing about a rather obscure backwater from my childhood on the radio in North Carolina, but suddenly a whole bunch of memories came welling up, and I felt the need to commit them to electronic memory.

@ Giggle Pixie: Yeah, the wearing my clothes around, I can live with. It's the drinking of my beer that gets you sent to the guillotine.

@ Will: Being that my family had a pontoon boat, a rowboat, and a fishing boat, that would have given Kirch three more vehicles to have thrown up off the side of.

red said...

Well, aren't you fancy, Mr. My-Family-had-a-Lakehouse.

Scope said...

It could have been worse. He DRANK the beer. He could have been an asshole, and just opened them all, forcing the owner to pour it out.

That's alcohol abuse, and the kind of thing that will put you down around the child-molesters on the prison sodomy dance partner list.

mevans said...

Usually I only swore in front of my parents if I was angry, but I once said "slut" in front of them while singing Weird Al's "Gump."

Normalize breastfeeding. said...

I know you are following my blog waiting to see a shot of my nekked boobie, so why aren't I on your list of blogs you follow?!

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

@ Red: Ahem. I think you misread. Three lake houses. Not just one. Three. Two of them even were on the waterfront, and the third had lake access.

@ Scope: You are so true. However, I have a weak constitution, and the thought of leaving opened beer sitting around getting oxidized, stale and flat is...is...it's just too much!!!

I think I'm going to be sick...

@ mevans: Slut's not so bad. At least in my book, but you see the kind of shit I scrawl on a computer screen, so maybe I'm a bad choice for becoming a moral compass.

@ Normalize Breastfeeding: For a moment, I was really confused, but then I realized you're just that lady who can't tell the difference between a pheasant and a hat. Thanks for dropping by.

Gwen said...

I have no idea when I uttered the first swear in front of parents which probably means I did it so much it was no big deal. Huh.