Tuesday, July 7, 2009

No Rest

"If you don't behave, we'll kill you," I said.

"If you do behave, you'll get dessert," said my friend R.

We were at a table at the Lake Yellowstone Lodge. My three boys were with us, as were his three. Their ages at the time were 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9.

Our wives had somehow maneuvered things so they were sitting alone at a table next to ours and enjoying a quiet glass of wine. They glanced up at our comments and frowned.

"Want to trade seats?" R. asked them.

The women went back to pretending they didn't know us.

"Let's play a game," I suggested.

"How about 'How Much Can Snag and I Drink?'" said R.

"That one, of course," I said. "Something the boys might like too, though." I nodded at his two oldest boys, who were giving each other the evil eye.

"You're going to die," he whispered to them.

"So are you," I snapped at my middle kid, who was about to steal his younger brother's crayons.

The waiter arrived. "Would you gentlemen like anything before dinner?" he asked.

"A new life," said R.

"A lot of liquor," I said.

"I'll bring a wine list," he said, backing away nervously.

"A couple of martinis with it," I called after him.

"Shhh," my Lovely Bride hissed from her table.

"I'm sorry if we're bothering you, ma'am," I said. "It's hard being a single father."

She glared at me for a moment, then went back to talking with R.'s wife. I was going to pay for that one later.

"What game are we going to play?" asked R.'s youngest.

"Guess Why God Hates Me," suggested R.

"How about the Quiet Game," I said. "We'll see who can be quiet the longest."

"I lose," said my middle son. The rest of them started yelling at him for cheating. So much for that idea.

"Let's guess how many zeros a number has," I said. "It'll be a team effort. If you're wrong, you all get punched."

"That's too easy," said my oldest.

"Four hundred and two quintillion, thirty one quadrillion, seven hundred seventy trillion, nine hundred forty one billion, six hundred and seven million, three hundred and six," said R.

The boys put their heads down and started calculating. R. and I stuffed some bread in our mouths and chugged greedily at the martinis that finally arrived.

"Five zeros," the kids finally concluded.

"Right," said R., who, like me, had completely forgotten the point of the game.

The waiter had returned again. "May I take your dinner order?" he asked.

"I'll have the bison," I said.

"I'll have the trout," said R.

"They'll all have cheeseburgers," we said, pointing at the boys.

"I want macaroni and cheese," one of them demanded.

"Fine," I said. "Macaroni and cheese. And a big bottle of Pinot Noir."

"Would you like the wine with your dinner?" the waiter asked.

"No, it's a medical emergency," said R. "Right away, along with a couple extra martinis. The pain is starting to return."

R.'s wife glared at him from the other table. He was going to pay later too.

"Let's play another game," the kids demanded.

So we did, alternating games and alcohol for the better part of an hour. Finally, dinner done, promised desserts delivered, we stood to leave.

"Excuse me," said an elderly woman who was sitting with her husband at a table next to ours.

"Yes?" R. asked, flinching in anticipation.

"I just want to tell you we'd been looking forward to this special dinner for quite some time and were very worried when you sat down next to us. You have lovely children, however. They behaved splendidly and you did a marvelous job of keeping them entertained."

"Thank you," I said. "That's very nice to hear."

R. and I turned to our wives, who were listening while they enjoyed a quiet cup of coffee at their own table. We smirked.

"You'd best catch up to your lovely children," said R.'s wife.

"Yes," said mine. "They're in the lobby and it looks as though they've found a new game."

We looked up in time to see a punch about to be thrown.

"I'm going to kill them," said R.

"Lovely funerals for lovely children," I said.


ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

It was all worth it, though, right Snag?

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

As time goes by, it seems that Snag's and Kathleen's blogs are converging. We already know, of course, that both of them ARE SOME SORT OF LEGAL PROFESSIONALS.

Would it be irresponsible to speculate? It would be irresponsible NOT TO.

high roller said...

I love these 'snaglets' - outstanding!

fish said...

I was just in that restaurant (and that park) last week. I ran into that same lady commenting on our kids behavior. I think she just wanders the park looking for ill behaved children...

Snag said...

I sincerely hope for Kathleen's sake that she is not finding herself with the same experience base from which to draw "inspiration."

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

I think both of you are Burt Prelutsky.

Jennifer said...

Would it be irresponsible to speculate? It would be irresponsible NOT TO.


I second that.

Righteous Bubba said...

4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9.

Jenny Jenny, who can I turn to?

Kathleen said...

I can see my margarita statistic is only going to increase. Invest in Jose Cuervo STAT