Friday, June 29, 2012

Road Trip!

The Old AF Sarge is a gonna be a travelin' this coming week. Headed down to Virginia Beach for the Fourth at the invitation of the WSO. I'll get to see my granddaughter (Little Bit) and apparently the Nuke and Bear are coming over as well from Memphis.

Initially the Nuke was going to fly over to visit, but then she realized that Bear's birthday was also on the Fourth. And there was no way she was going to leave her faithful canine behind. So she's driving. For fifteen hours. She really loves that dog.

In my younger days I would've made the drive as well. I used to enjoy the trip down and back. Not so much nowadays. The New Jersey Turnpike has taken it's toll on my aging nerves. Both literally and figuratively speaking. Not to mention the cost of fuel. Even though it's lower than it has been in a while, it's still too much for a 550 mile journey, one way.

Besides which, the WSO is springing for the plane tickets. Nice of her isn't it? (Have I mentioned lately how great my kids are? All three of them are generous to a fault. We musta done something right when we raised them. Hhhm, the Missus would probably say, at this point, "We? We raised them? Seems I did all the heavy lifting." And she's right. She did the bulk of the upbringing of the progeny. And all three are (or were) officers in the United States Navy. If they'd followed my example they'd probably turn out to be really salty CPOs. Not that that is a bad thing. But you gotta admit, the O's make more money.)

To prepare for this adventure I have to go into my training routine. This involves coming up with ways to annoy the heck out of the Nuke. She expects it. And who am I to disappoint the first daughter?

No doubt at this point you're wondering why the post leads off with a picture of George Clooney in the role of Ulysses Everett McGill in the celebrated film O Brother, Where Art Thou? Well, it has to do with one of the most effective ways I know to annoy both the Nuke and the Missus without getting into too much trouble. Besides which, the WSO loves to play along.

You see, since arriving home from the banks of the Merrimack River on Thursday afternoon, I think I've listened to the song Man of Constant Sorrow from the film's soundtrack about a billion times. For to get the tone "just right". (For those of you wondering what the song sounds like, here's a link:, believe me, it's old-timey! Also the link has scenes from the film, awesome!)

Now how does this annoy the Nuke? Well for instance, we'll be walking out of a store and there I go, "Ahhhh am a ma-an of constant sorrooowwww, Ah've seen trubble all ma days...". Whereupon the WSO will join in and there we are, two Yankees wailing away in pseudo-country nasalness, in public, for all too see. The Missus will shake her head and add a soft-spoken "shut up you two idiots" while the Nuke slowly tries to fade into the background, doing the old, "I'm not with THOSE people, really. But I am so embarrassed." No one buys it, they all know that she is with us. And she knows it too. Which irks her like you would not believe.

I remember the first time I watched the movie. I believe the WSO and I went to our local video rental place (now that is old-timey all by itself - the place is long defunct). There we saw this movie which neither of us had ever heard of, but which starred George Clooney. Also the box said it was "loosely based on the Odyssey". Hhhmm? What do hillbillies and an epic Greek poem have in common? Oh what the heck, we rented it and it was hysterical, entertaining and the music was unbelievable. And this coming from a guy who's very much into rock and roll! I've probably seen the movie a dozen times by now. If it comes on TV, the Missus will roll her eyes and either find something else to do or forbid viewing so she can watch another episode of House Hunters International (bogus) or perhaps something on Lifetime (gag).

But the WSO and I are big fans, really big fans. We consider ourselves to be bona fide!

So that's the deal. I probably will be blogging from Chez Big Time this week (though he's deployed, I consider it to be his house, man of the family, etc., etc.). After all, the WSO still owes me some Strike Det stories.

I'll end with a bit from the movie:

Ulysses Everett McGill: Why are you telling our gals that I was hit by a train?
Penny Wharvey McGill: Lots of respectable people have been hit by trains. Judge Hobbie over in Cookville was hit by a train. What was I gonna tell them, that you got sent to the penal farm and I divorced you from shame?
Ulysses Everett McGill: Uh, I take your point. But it does put me in a damn awkward position, vis-a-vis my progeny.


  1. "A Man of Constant Sorrow" is one of my favorite bluegrass/country tunes. Srsly. You should record your duet version and post it for posterity, if not grins and giggles. ;-)

    Have a great trip!

    1. Thanks Buck! But now you've got those squeaky wheels churning in the old brain box. I'll have to get Little Bit in on it as well. The granddaughter's not much on the lyrics, but at two she can harmonize with the best of them! I'm sure the WSO's up for it, as long as the Nuke and the Missus don't shut us down in full stride!

  2. I'm with Buck - great song and terrific version on OBWAT. And I also agree that a recording is required now...

    Have a safe trip; be well and happy 4th to the family.

    1. Okay, now I'm feeling the pressure to unveil my singing voice to the world. Accompanied by the WSO and Little Bit of course. When I mentioned Buck's suggestion to the WSO, it got real quiet-like down there in old Virginny. She said she would think about it. I'm sure I can talk her into it. The results will no doubt be hysterical as neither the WSO nor I have what you would call a melodious singing voice. We sound more like Vikings bellowing for more mead. Not that we've ever actually done that. Not that we would admit to anyway.


Just be polite... that's all I ask. (For Buck)
Can't be nice, go somewhere else...

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