Now is the summer of my displeasure – Red Bluff Daily News
As I sit here in my uncomfortable chair, I hear the screams and roars of laughter from what sounds like about 500 teenagers in my back pool for my second daughter’s high school graduation party, and I asks if there is a sufficient supply of chlorine shock treatments for this water ever to be reclaimed.
Even the mellow tones of Taylor Swift blasting throughout the neighborhood at thermonuclear decibels aren’t enough to drown out the reality that this won’t be an ordinary summer.
Yes, our happy youngest daughter recently graduated from high school, and we are extremely proud of her for acquiring 13 years of knowledge and life skills, especially her mastery of self-checkout at Target and her expertise in breaking up with goobers.
As she is the middle child, we wanted to make sure she felt loved and appreciated at this special time in her life, so my wife and I threw her a big graduation party to make up for all the times we fed and occupied her like a toddler scattering a handful of Cheerios on the floor and hoping for the best.
With the passage of fall, winter and early spring, our backyard and swimming pool seemed to have suffered a major incursion from the Russians, so I spent two weeks raking, scrubbing, hauling, digging, planting , drag discs and ignore inflation at Lowe’s and The Home Depot to make the area relatively safe for teenagers.
After buying the yard upgrades, pool chemicals, decorations, and a taco bar big enough to satisfy a biblical plague of locusts, we should still be able to afford to send our second daughter to college somewhere. time before his 50th birthday.
And speaking of college, our eldest and dearest daughter has come home from Texas A&M University for the summer and started her first “real” job – other than working frantically to restore her bedroom to its original appearance. as a giant clothing drop box. At first she seemed reluctant to apply for summer jobs – until I gave her the choice of working outside the home or serving as a personal assistant, pedicurist, toilet sanitizer, as an underwear folder, as a minesweeper for dog bombs, and other assigned tasks. I couldn’t help but laugh a little to myself at the end of her first week on the job when she told us how tired she was and that we were all going to have to start going to bed at a decent hour.
Because we’ll have two daughters in college this fall (I couldn’t convince them to pursue a career in plumbing) and now have to finance a tank of gas, my wife and I decided to give up on our road trip. week-long summer annual. in Orange Beach, Alabama, to save money. But to prevent our three daughters from forming a special House committee to investigate this atrocity, we’re planning a shorter jaunt to New Orleans to enjoy the food and the history – with the added bonus of reminding them why we go to Sunday school.
Yes, this summer will be different. Our little birds are getting ready to fly, and soon we’ll only have one left in the nest to complain about because we bought the Walmart Great Value Worms instead of the brand name.
When I am alone and feeling thoughtful about these changes, I stop to thank God for the wonderful years we have had with our daughters and the exciting, yet different, years to come. Then I put on my used vintage AirPods from one of my daughters, fired up some Taylor Swift, and munched on a handful of Cheerios for old times.
Jase Graves is an award-winning comedy columnist from East Texas. His columns have been featured in Texas Escapes magazine, The Shreveport Times, The Longview News Journal, and The Kilgore News Herald. Contact Graves at [email protected]