The Hess Report

Tuesday, May 06, 2003

So here’s the thing that got me doing this again. My life has been relatively free from aggravation, angst and bitterness, so there was little write about. But something happened on Saturday that chapped my backside badly enough to start writing. So consider this Hess Report, the Resurrection.

Saturday, we took the kids to a McDonald’s-based birthday party for one of our friends’ boys (he’s five now.) A good time was had by all, and most of the kids spent 90% of their time in the play station. If you don’t have kids, you may only have seen these from the window of your car, and they’re every bit as claustrophobic as they appear. But the kids love the two-story conglomeration of tunnels, slides and communicable diseases. That’s right. Diseases.

One would think that if one had two children, and those children had been throwing up during the night that one would be concerned for them. One would think that they might have some strain of influenza. Maybe something less long-lived but just as nasty. Or maybe they just ate something bad like undercooked meat. Or maybe they didn’t wash their hands after they used the bathroom and hit the fecal-oral jackpot the next time they put their hands in their mouths. Or maybe… you know what? It doesn’t freaking matter! If your kids are throwing up, you do not, under any circumstances take them somewhere that they will be playing in close quarters with other kids! It is absolute fupidity. Complete and utter. What were they thinking?

So Joy and I spent Sunday night holding back Maddie’s (5) hair while she called for the bucket every half hour on the spot. This lasted until 4 a.m. Thank you, irresponsible, stupid parents (hereafter: ISPs). Actually, Joy’s participation in this extravaganza was minimal because she was bundled on the couch fighting waves of fever and naseau. Thanks, ISPs. Oh did I mention that I spent two hours Sunday evening in excruciating abdominal pain? I didn’t? Oh, well, thanks for that, too.

Monday morning, 6 a.m., head off for work. Email from Joy shortly after seven. Maddie still heaving. Joy unable to really even stand up without falling over. Lucy, luckily, just fine. I have to burn a vacation day to take care of everyone. Now you’re costing us cash money, ISPs. Later that day, we find out that many of our adult and kid friends who were there and interacted with the disease-ridden tots are similarly ill. People had to take off work, cancel plans, etc.

Now I realize that life happens, and you make the best of it. But if the agent of life happenings becomes known to you, and it looks as if life could have happened differently if only someone had thought rationally for ten seconds instead of waddling around their house saying “Duh! Duh! Duuuuuuhhhhh!”, well, that makes it different. I am sooooo peeved at these people. However, they aren’t even acquaintances. I wouldn’t recognize them in the grocery store if I saw them. And I can hardly go to our mutual friend and ask for their contact information for the express purpose of reaming them out.

So here’s what I’m taking away from this: become a better listener. Memorize the first and last names of everyone with whom I come into even the most tangential contact. That way, if they give me a pathogenic screwing, or involve me in some other rotten-karma-inducing fiasco, I can at the very least write them a nasty letter directly. And then you won’t have to read about it here.

Other than that, the Hesses are great this week.

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