Monday, December 12, 2011

City Stories: Stoops to Nuts ~ A Storytelling Show on Dec 13th @ 6pm

Our next "City Stories: Stoops to Nuts" show is tomorrow, Tues, Dec 13th @ 6pm at the Cornelia Street Cafe.

Please come down for a special holiday performance with gifted tellers and marvelous songsmiths: Barbara Aliprantis, Kelly Wallace-Barnhill, Carl Kissin, Mary Lee Kortes, Thomas Pryor, Elizabeth Rowe & Amanda Thorpe. Admission is $7 & that includes one free drink.

Here's a Christmas tale.

Christmas Relief With Preparation H

It was Saturday morning the week before Christmas in 1962. Rory and I were dunking toast in milk-ladened coffee. Mom was washing the dishes.  Dad home late the night before got up to go to the bathroom. On the way to the head (He was a Navy Man), he put Sinatra’s Christmas album on his RCA Victrola. This pleased Mom to no end. Not sure if he put the record on to encourage his movement or to get us in a Christmas mood.  

Rory had a Santa hat on at the kitchen table which drove me nuts because it was loaded with chocolate stains from candy bars Rory ate on the couch using the hat for a napkin. As soon as Mom noticed the stains the hat was history. Rory immediately began to sing along to “Jingle Bells,” the first tune in his high sweet voice. Rory could sing, Mom & I joined in.

As the second song started, we began to hear sounds from the throne in the toilet, “Oh, my god, ooooooooooooooooh, jeez, ooooooooooooh, huh, hey, aaaaaaaaah.”

As Sinatra and we sung “Jack Frost nipping on your nose,” we heard “maaaaa gaa, ooooooooooooh, ugh, hey, oh, my, ooooooooooooooh.”

And this kept up through two or three songs, and every time we heard Dad moaning, Mom started giggling then laughing out loud, since she gave us the green light we did too, to the point our laughter, Dad’s groans and Sinatra’s lifting voice became one chaotic 83rd Street orchestra. Dad would pop in with “Shut it up!” But we couldn’t stop. 

When Dad came out of the bathroom we all got the look of death and he stopped talking to us for the rest of the day. After he left the room Mom said Dad had sores called hemorrhoids because he read too long on the bowl. I thought to myself, “I need to cut down on my reading.”

Forty years later, the year before Dad died, he, my cousin, Jimmy, and I were sitting in my father's Massapequa Park living room watching a late December Giant game together.  During halftime, Sinatra’s voice comes on the TV singing, “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.”  I asked Dad how old he was when he got hemorrhoids.  He gave me the look.

He remembered.

“I was 18.”
“You must have read a lot of stuff by 18.”
“What do you mean?”
“Isn’t that how you got them?”
“Nooooo, I was in the Navy.” He lit another cigarette from his other cigarette and continued, “We were in a munitions drill on the ship. I was in a line of sailors passing weapons from one deck below up to the guns. I was on the top deck three men away from the guns. Midway through a shot backfired and exploded.  The two guys in front near the guns were torn apart, the guy next to me lost a hand, the force of the blast drove me straight down the ladder onto the deck below directly on my ass.”

And Mom knew this?

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