ShoreBilly’s Swill: From Behind the Bar to the Grappling with a 3-Year-Old Barber
I’ve mentioned countless times that this column often just writes itself for me. This week is one of those times. Between my job as a bartender and my home life raising a houseful of kids, I am never suffering for a lack of material. So rather than dig too deep, or try to come up with a theme, I’m simply going to walk you through a handful of the highlights from my week. I can’t possibly fit all that is print worthy from an entire week of my life into one column. So here are some of the more memorable moments from both home and work this past week.
There were several influential factors this past week which could easily have found their way into this article. For example the formative weeks of a new football season which brings throngs of oddly attired, rabid fans in to scream at the players on the TV as if they can hear them…you realize they can’t actually hear you right? And that you aren’t actually on the roster? These are the same caliber of people who will take up prime bar stool real estate and miraculously sip the same drink for 4 hours as they watch the game.
Then toss into the mix the tens of thousands of bikers who came this weekend. To tell you the truth, they’re one of my favorite groups that come to town, so I have no beef with them. They do bring with them though some fodder for the Swill though. I really hope there’s enough space at the end of this to tell you about the nice gentleman who suggested I do something incredibly unnatural with a coupon.
But by far, the greatest influence of this past week came in the form of my 3 year old daughter. Her antics of just this one week were so prolific that they alone are more than ample to secure her a spot in the toddler hall of fame. To describe this little girl as colorful would be a grossly understated choice of vernacular. She is a constant source of entertainment, more often than not without even trying to be. She singlehandedly put me through a myriad of emotions this week ranging from doubled over with laughter to clutching my chest, and all stops in between.
Let me say in advance that I do in fact watch my own children diligently despite what you are about to read. I’m not taking naps, screwing around watching You Tube videos, arranging my fantasy football team, or heading down the street to catch happy hour. I am very much hands on and attentive. But those two little ones work fast, and when they work as a team, they perform with the alacrity of Seal Team 6. In the time it takes me to rotate a load of laundry, visit the bathroom, or attempt to write a paragraph, they’ve already completed a mission and usually vanquished me in some way in the process. I mentioned them working as a team, which they usually do, but this week my 2 year old daughter was less of a willing participant. The following is about actual events that all happened between Monday and Friday of this past week…all involving my one daughter.
I’ve downloaded a handful of apps to my I-Phone for my girls. They are mostly educational toddler games. On Monday, I left my phone unattended very briefly. To her credit, she did ask me if she could play her games before just taking over my phone. Though I think if she knew my pass code she wouldn’t have been quite so overtly responsible. She was just a few feet away from me on the couch perfectly content for awhile. At one point I noticed that the sound effects from her game were no longer prevalent. As I gently reclaimed my device, I noticed that it was in camera mode. I clicked on my album, and much to my surprise I found 172 fresh new copies of a nearly identical ‘selfie’ my daughter had taken of her right eye, and nostril. There were a handful that had more of her cute little face in them and I even saved a couple. There was also a smattering of video intermingled with the stills featuring her smiling and motionless and my voice in the background talking to her the entire time. I spent the next hour deleting photos to get me back within my usage plan, but I’m pretty sure the damage was already done.
Bring on Tuesday. Monday’s shenanigans were pretty mild by the standards of my house where events range from silly to cataclysmic. On Tuesday, my two little ones had gone up stairs to play in their big sister’s room. I went up a few times to check on them and everything seemed fine, so against my better judgment I left them to their own devices for awhile. I yelled up the stairs about every 15 minutes to elicit a response and all seemed normal. I wasn’t overly concerned with the potential damage they were doing to the 9 year old’s room as it was already messy enough that she wouldn’t even notice any new destruction. So in the interest of karma, I just let it happen.
After awhile, they got hungry and I called them down for lunch and whatever animated distraction I had found on the TV. Eventually my 9 year old daughter came home from school and my two toddlers were snuggling up in Daddy’s lap for their afternoon nap. I was engaged in possibly my favorite and most therapeutic pastime; which is running my fingers through my youngest daughter’s beautiful, flowing, curly locks. Suddenly, my caressing hand came to a screeching halt, my eyes widened like never before, and my heart briefly stopped.
Something was horribly wrong with my little Flower’s hair. And by that I mean that a significant portion of it was no longer there. Right about this time, my oldest daughter screamed from her room. She had just happened upon the first of four heaping piles we would find of what was once the gorgeous, curly sandy colored mane attached to the innocent head of my youngest. It seems that my 3 year old decided to try her hand at cosmetology and tragically it came at the expense of my 2 year old’s signature curls.
While this little cherub took it completely in stride and even tried to assure me that it was no big deal, I was mortified. Well, at least it’s not like she’s the flower girl in my Nieces’ wedding in 2 weeks. Oh, wait a minute, yes she is! To my middle daughter’s credit, she does have a bright future as a hair dresser. She didn’t just cut it all off in one spot; she actually gave my youngest layers so it wasn’t glaringly apparent what had happened. You had to be either touching it or up close enough to see it. Most of the freshly groomed area was on and around the crown of her head. It was as if we had coated the inside of a yarmulke with industrial strength adhesive, placed it upon her, and then abruptly removed it. She now had a perfect, textbook mullet. If I could find a pair of skin tight, high-waisted stone washed jeans in size 2-T, I could perfectly accessorized this look.
And once again, I ran out of space before I ran out of words. So I’m afraid we are going to have to pick this back up next week. The best stories are yet to come.
Thanks for playing along.
Until next week, Syd Nichols