Magic Jewball

all signs point to no


You get to blog so I don’t have to

Filed under : Etc.
On October 10, 2006
At 4:18 pm
Comments : 26

I know I said I was going to Paris for vacation but actually, I’m sort of on vacation now. It’s hard to explain and thus I won’t. Because I’m lazy! And private! But let’s go back to that first lazy one. Since you’ve all been leaving such fabulous sukkah comments and Celia was right that you need a new topic, here’s one for you so you can all be my guest bloggers. Please tell me a humorous vacation story. Non-humorous vacation stories are not encouraged, but since I don’t know where you live I can hardly track you down and reprimand you personally.

Also, should you have no vacation stories at all, just tell me anything. Remember, J-Ball readers are counting on you for new content. OK, they should have been counting on me, but I’m just going out and admitting right now I’m letting you down. Yes, yes, I suck. Be sure to tell me so humorously in a comment.

No song today due to laziness and/or vacation. Instead, please enjoy this adorable yet non-topical photo of a baby holding onto a subway pole which I’ve dug out of the archives.


26 Comments for this post

  1. Jane says:

    When I was 8 years old, my family went to Yuma, Arizona to visit my uncle. We drove there from North Dakota. There are a million things I remember about that trip, but the one that stands out the most is having dinner in a little town north of Flagstaff, Arizona on the way home.

    A young couple was sitting in the booth next to us, screaming at each other. The manager repeatedly stopped to ask if everything was okay, and they just kept screaming.

    They had left Phoenix that morning headed to Los Angeles and they ended up north of Flagstaff. Take out a US map and check that out.

    The argument ended when the woman stood up, yelled “Fine, you big studly man, why don’t you LEARN HOW TO READ A MAP!” and walked out. I have no idea where she went. He continued to eat his meal.

    I like to think that’s where I learned my fantastic stomp-out-of-the-room skills. It’s definitely the moment in time when I started eavesdropping in restaurants, and also when I decided I would never ever be in charge of the map.

  2. Vicki, Florida says:

    When I was about 10, my dad took me to Germany for an International Airlines bowling tournament. He worked for Pan American and we were able to go all over the world.

    It wouldn’t be a trip to Germany without going to a brewery. We went to the Heineger Brau (sp) brewery and went to the hospitality house for free beer. Of course, no soda.

    Everyone was passing around a glass boot that was filled with beer and taking drinks. Someone passed it to me and I looked at my dad, who was like go ahead. He said “Take a drink from the back”, so of course I trust my daddy, right?

    I take a drink from the back, and the air bubble go to the toe and comes right back up and I get sprayed in the face with the beer. Everyone was laughing. Good thing that I didn’t know how to drive!

    Another one was when we were in Thailand. I was 11 or 12, and my dad went parasailing. He asked me if I wanted to go, and said yes. While they were hooking me up, my dad was trying to make sure I wouldn’t freak. He turned his head for a sec and I was gone. I absolutely loved it. He was a little crushed that I didn’t need him and wasn’t scared. He was too cute. (I can say that now.)

    Have a great vaca Bec!

  3. RN says:

    There was this one time when I was flying back from Sydney that was kinda freaky. A few hours into the flight and the whole plane started shaking and before I knew it, the whole plane started breaking up and we went crashing into the earth.

    Next thing I knew, I was in the ocean and swimming to shore. There were quite a few other people swimming to the shore or already there.

    This one dude was running around helping everyone. His name was Jack and man was he a hottie. He was also a lot smarter than that Gilligan dude.

    I wish I could tell you more but, I signed a confidentiality agreement after I got back home.

    Have a great vacation Becca!

  4. KP says:

    There was this one time I went to New York City and ate nothing but cupcakes and cookies. I laughed the whole time. It rocked.

  5. Alex says:

    I believe I’ve seen a picture of that, KP. I even noticed there were cupcakes in the picture.


  6. Becca says:

    Why, I seem to remember that as well.

    Thanks, everyone! And now, back to my regularly scheduled vacation.

  7. Celia says:

    Being relatively unfamiliar with the concept of a vacation, I cannot come up with a funny vacation story. However, I do have a joke. My friend says he heard this from me several years ago, but I’d completely forgotten it so I got to laugh at it all over again.

    The German says, “I am thirsty. I must have beer.”
    The Frenchman says, “I am thirsty. I must have wine.”

    The Jew says, “I am thirsty. I must have diabetes.”

  8. Emeraldmph says:

    I went with a girlfriend and two male (gay) friends of mine to the Canaries my senior year of college (2001). We were in a bar playing pool and a group of Germans started quizzing us about where we were from. When we told them DC, they asked us if we knew Monica Lewinsky.

    Later that trip the two guys were walking through the red-light district and a female prostitute started following them and advertising anal sex. Rather graphically.

  9. kb says:

    I don’t know if this will translate well to the written word, but here goes:

    This was technically “work”, but I consider it vacation because I was in a foreign country. Anyway, I was working a giant print trade show in Germany called DRUPA. Each day of the show ran from like 7 am to 7 pm. It was exhausting but fun, because I saw cool exhibits like the one where naked models were painted like canvas, and another one where I had my portrait drawn on a computer and printed out for free. It’s also the place where I ordered one crepe, but because I held up my index finger rather than my thumb, I ended up getting two crepes. Apparently in Germany you start counting with the thumb.

    The company I was working for had not been able to secure any rooms at at a hotel, so they ended up housing all of us on a houseboat on the Rhine, with a private cook and everything. My roommate had been there a week already before I got there, and by the middle of the second week was utterly exhausted.

    So one night we both went to bed after partying a bit on top the boat. I was sleeping hard, when suddenly I was awakened by the sounds of my roommate moving around the cabin. I peered through the darkness at her and saw that she was putting makeup on. She had obviously showered and blow dried her hair already. Looking at her, I figured I had overslept. Looking at the darkness, it still looked like the middle of the night.

    I looked around at the room: it was dark. I turned and pulled the curtain on the porthole: streetlights were still on. I was utterly confused. But having been abruptly awakened out of an exhausted, hard sleep, I wasn’t sure I could trust my eyes. I asked her what she was doing. “I’m going to DRUPA!” she said.

    I looked at my watch, which confirmed my suspicions. “But … but it’s 3:15 in the morning!” I exclaimed. Instantly my roommate realized what she had just done and convulsed into laughter. Apparently she had partially overheard the people in the next room discussing what time they were leaving the next day, and when she heard “7:30”, she thought she had overslept. So she got up and showered, dressed, and was putting makeup on in the middle of the night.

    Neither of us could stop laughing for a long time. I think we woke up the rest of the boat.

    OOh, ooh, another story, please? Same trip, different day. One thing I noticed in Germany was how well behaved all the dogs were, all the time. Apparently it costs so much to own a dog there, that those privileged to afford one take a lot of time with obedience training. So you see dogs in restaurants and everything, and they just lie there in absolute obedience to their masters.

    Anyway, each day on our way to DRUPA, we had to walk about fifteen minutes along the river to catch a boat that would take us up the Rhine and to the show. One day I lagged behind the group so I was walking alone. Suddenly, alongside the path, I came across a giant Rottweiler standing absolutely frozen, looking right at me. I froze, since I am very afraid of those dogs, and this one was HUGE. I was certain that if I moved an inch, he would attack me. I slowly turned my head looking for help, when I saw on the other side of me a muscular man holding a large stick above his head. My life flashed before my eyes, and I was certain I was about to be beaten and torn apart by this combination of man and dog.

    I stood there, not able to move. But then, so did the dog. And so did the man. We stood there, frozen in time. “Would someone please move and get it over with?” I thought. This was starting to feel ridiculous. I couldn’t wait any longer in this suspense, so I slowly started walking again. I was certain that this would trigger them to finally kill me. But no, they stood there motionless as I walked on. Then, once I was out of their range, they moved: the man threw the big stick into the water and the dog went charging in to get it.

    I felt a combination of utter relief and extreme embarrassment. What must the man have thought of this idiot American woman who came between him and his dog and then just froze there?

  10. kay says:

    When I was a kid, my step-dad owned a flew a single-engine plane. We had all sorts of fun trips, including the time we all flew in Niner-five Delta Charlie to Mexico, having sent my step-sister on a commercial flight with all of our luggage. She arrive; our luggage did not.

    There was also the time we had to stop in a field at night in Missouri because the weather was so bad we could not fly anymore.

    There was also the time, flying home from North Dakota (hi Jane!) that my step-dad decided to buzz Mt. Rushmore. I remember my mom screaming, “Don! You don’t need to wipe their noses!” We were frighteningly close (he admitted years later, too close) and today, they’d probably scramble fighter jets and shoot us down.

    Thankfully I was not on this trip, but in 1989, my parents decided to tour the Caribbean. They were forced to make an unauthorized emergency landing in Managua. Think about what was going on in that part of the world in 1989, and what it might look like to the Nicaraguan authorities. They were greeted with about 20 machine guns drawn, and detained for about 24 hours before they were able to prove it was an innocent mistake and that the plane needed a repair.

    The end.

  11. Sarpon says:

    Way, way back in the olden days, when I was young and even poorer than I am now, I thought little of making car trips of 1,500 miles in 18 hours. It was cheaper than flying and when I got to my destination I had my car. I traveled from New Jersey to Wisconsin, from Wisconson to Florida, Florida to New Jersey; alone or with someone else to share the driving, it didn’t matter, up the eastern seaboard and through the Smokeys I’d go at the drop of a hat.

    I picked up my redneck boyfriend Al when I was driving from Florida to Wisconsin at the end of Spring Break in 1981. He was on I-75 in Valdosta, Georgia hitchhiking from Daytona Beach and heading for Missouri to visit his estranged wife but he decided to come with me instead. An object lesson on why you shouldn’t pick up hitchhikers — they might stay with you for four years and drive you crazy with their alcoholism and break your heart because you know they love you but that’s not enough, is it?

    Oh, something *amusing.* OK.

    In March of 1989, my then boyfriend Kevin and I took a trip from Florida to Harrisburg, PA to visit his mother and sister. We left before dawn and reached the outskirts of Baltimore by late evening and stayed the night with my sister and her husband in Columbia, MD. The next afternoon we left to complete the trip to Harrisburg with me driving. In the heavy traffic, I missed the exit on the Washington Beltway and as a result we had to circle DC twice, with Kevin ragging on me mercilessly the entire time. I suggested to him that as he was the one who had grown up in the area, perhaps he should have driven on the Beltway rather than me, but he just said the problem was that I couldn’t deal with simple (hah!) signage.

    Cut to the end of the journey, when we were on I-95 approaching Jacksonville. Kevin is driving, and evening is coming on. I told him that he could stay on I-95 and go through Jax, which wouldn’t be too bad, or he could take 295 which is a very big bypass and not really worth it, his choice. Then I dozed off. When I woke up, we were headed for St. Augustine. We live in Gainesville. For those not familiar with the geography of Florida, this would be akin to heading for Canada from Texas on a trip to Mexico.

    As it turned out, Kevin had gone around the 295 bypass two full times and was too embarassed to wake me up and tell me that he had no idea where to get off. When he finally decided to just get off somewhere, the exit he’d chosen was due east when he needed to go due west. He then traveled another 20 miles before I woke up on my own.

    Luckily, I knew all the backroads between St. Augustine and Gainesville and knew how to get us home by a route that saved us at least a half hour over the conventional route.

    Karma rocks.

  12. Alex says:

    Umm, Sarpon, maybe this just enhances your story, but the Capital Beltway isn’t between Columbia, MD, and Harrisburg, PA. Either you’ve confused the Baltimore Beltway with the DC Beltway, or you had yet one more episode of going the wrong direction on this ill-fated car trip.

    Seeing Sarpon reminds me, though, there’s no ROTM for October yet. If J’ball is now a self-service blog, do we pick our own ROTM?

  13. Sarpon says:

    We very well could have been circling Baltimore, Alex. After all, it was a couple of decades ago and I was being harangued mercilessly at the time by one who did not know what a karmic trap he was setting for himself.

    If ROTM is to be an elected postion, will there be campaigning and slogans?

  14. Celia says:

    Would this be a bad time to point out that you could simply have gotten off at the next exit and turned around?

  15. Becca says:

    Silly readers, of course I have a ROTM. She/he/it/they has/have already been contacted, wacky pictures have been received, and at some point, I will actually write the thing.

    This is not a democracy!

  16. KP says:

    Becca’s gone, no iPod song of the week….I feel so empty. Can I post an iPod song? Can I? Can I?

  17. RN says:

    My driving nightmare was in Paris. My mother moved to Germany and we went to visit in ’92. Of course we had to go to Paris.

    Mom thought she had booked us into a hotel on the outskirts of town so that all we would have to do is take the tube into town to sightsee.

    Well, as I was driving into town it was very apparent as we passed Notre Dame that we were in the middle of everything.

    Four lanes were painted onto the street but there were at least 6 lanes of cars. Okay, I can deal with that. The part that I couldn’t deal with? The dam traffic circles. After the fourth time around the Arch de Triumph the policeman just covered his eyes as I passed him.

    We did finally get to the hotel, two blocks off of the Arch de Triumph. Unloaded my mother, luggage and my two kids. Then we had to park.

    Parking in Paris is mostly underground. No problems finding the garage recommended by the hotel. We park and go up to ground level. Of course we are disoriented and start looking for the street that we drove in on. Can’t find it. Start walking and notice, the street names change almost every block.

    After almost being hit by no less than 5 cars while trying to cross the street with green light we see a sign pointing to McDonalds and that is how we found our hotel. Luckily it was by a landmark that we recognized without our guidebook.

  18. Becca says:

    I can’t refuse you, KP. There ya go.

    The rest of you, thanks! I’m never posting again.

  19. RN says:

    Never ever?

  20. KP says:

    Yay! I’ve been validated! Now everyone let Becca get back to her vacationing and go check out the iPod song of the week. It’s killer.

  21. kay says:

    I miss Becca. 🙁

  22. Sarpon says:

    So do I. I guess we’re just not as important to her as her stupid LIFE.

  23. KP says:

    But did you listen to the iPod song of the week?

  24. Becca says:

    You guys rock! Thanks so much for picking up my slack due to unexpected yet delightful vacation. Next time I’ll get a real guest blooger, I swear. Although you’ve all done a fine job, I must say.

  25. Shark says:

    My vacation this year was a cross-country road trip with a guy who can get a PhD, but doesn’t know his right from his left. Do you know how frustrating that gets after, oh, say, 20 minutes of driving?

    Yeah, by 8 days I was ready to scream.

    Gosh, how I miss that man o’ mine now, though.

  26. Celia says:

    Shark, I have an M.D. but I cannot tell my right from my left. Needless to say, my specialty is not radiology or surgery. Surgery would be especially bad because I have extra difficulty figuring out when I am wearing gloves.

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