Monday, October 31, 2005

Hunker Hunker Burning Love...

Whew! Well, the big Halloween party is over, successfully, I think. Now, as daylight savings time grips us in its prematurely darkness falling clutches, my typical inclination to hibernate is emerging with full inertial force.

The big party was also an excellent impetus to get my house all cleaned up and tidy, ready for me to snuggle down and relax for a few months before emerging come springtime. Don't get me wrong, I have a calendar of events and activities planned for the upcoming months, but somehow my mindset is getting more and more sedate, which can only be good.

Ebb and flow, yin and yang, the biorythmic pendulum is swinging, baby...its swinging to the side of domesticity, comfort and laziness. Yes, this is a good time of year. I have cider in the fridge, a stack of books to read, a beautiful wife to cuddle with, a few warm and demanding animal prowling around the house and good friends and family to chat with if need be.

Seek me out, fellow travellers, the ball is more than ever in your court. My court is currenly thick with wool and spiced cider.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Is this how it starts?

Follicles, Trigger Shots and Embryonic Transfers, oh my!

So the plan what is being implemented is fairly simple. We produce a childe in August 2006. Amazing, absolutely amazing. The Goodely Wyfe and I have been trying for the longest tyme, and I frequently look around my house, wondering where the 5 year old that we were supposed to have is.

But now it has become part of my everyday speech. Gaming conventions next year? No way in Tartarus. I will have an 8 to 9 month pregnant woman in my house, one what I can't just pack up and leave on for an extended weekend. Vacation Plans? Well, apparently flying after the first trimester is sketchy and frowned upon. The gang and I were planning a Live Action Role Playing Game (LARP) last night, and I had to remove my involvement...no way I can plan a huge party-game for a bunch of strangers with the "bellystretcher" on the horizon.

Breath coming shorter...heartbeat racing....panic attack imminent. Is this how it starts? With major plans being cancelled / delayed and ending up with the whole lifestyle shot all to holy heck? Not that my lifestyle is currently anything to crow about, really it seems more like killing time in the waiting room of life, waiting for that aforementioned urchin to finally get his / her ass out of my Goodely Wyfe's uberwomb, already. No more laying in bed on Sundays, or being lazy in general, even though many lazy folk have kids, I am sure.

One of my closer friends has paved this way for me, and has two kids of his own. I think he rides himself a little harder than he has to satisfy his ideal of the "pefect dad", but I wonder how far off the mark he is? Is it truly my life over, "our" life beginning? Do hot soccer moms and play dates make a decent substitute for hot interns / coworkers and weekday happy hours?

I love kids, and love the idea of being a parent. Everything exciting seems to be brushed with a modicum of terror, however. Hmm...I wonder if a new tradition can be implemented similar to the Bachelor Party, some kind of "Pre-Parent Triple X Throwdown". It would be a bittersweet affair, I imagine, like an Irish wake.

"Ere's te ye former lyfe, laddie, drink up, fer tommorow, ye be changin' Daipies!"

Monday, October 17, 2005

So I Don't Know...

...how I feel about that experience. Let's explore it together, shall we? Fine. Prepare for tittering chuckles, bashful cheek reddening and clinical obervation. Or should we go at it another way? Maybe we should be influenced by my profession (the Architecure) and think this way:

What would be your ideal masturbatory suite?

Like I said, this one's kind of a humdinger. You can stop reading now, if you know me not well enough or if you know me too well to dwell upon or think about how I spent my lunch hour, but for those who know me JUST ENOUGH, and trust me to relate this story without being vulgar or gross...read on...

My Goodely Wyfe and I are fully immersed in the deep end of infertility treatments, with In Vetro Fertilization (IVF) as our current area of exploration. While this process has said Goodely Wyfe performing more flips and twists than the Blue Man Group playing againt Circe de Soleil for the International Twister Championships, my role is basically donating a few "batches" of the spermy horde to the cause.

Immediately discounting the option of "producing" the specimen at home and bringing it (them?) to the clinic for analysis, I decide to "produce" on site. I have to admit that curiosity about the process outweighed the embarassment factor in my final decision.

So, of course, the clinic messes up my paperwork, but I no longer hold much of a grudge for the general incompetence of Health Care workers, it just is the rule, and anyone that has any kind of initiative or competence is the exception to that rule. Enough already.

So they bring me in, charge me money, and I sit relaxing in the waiting room, reading a murder mystery. Soon the coquettish tones of one of the nurses comes to me,

"Mr. Lach?", she says to me, "Please come with me."

Have the puns started already? She has a gleam in her eye, she knows why I am here, and hey, wait a minute, does she want to help me out with it? She must think I am cute, as almost everyone does (snoogans...) and she has a bit of a "go-er" about her. She obviously fancies me, and we both know how it is going to go down, maybe I have a Penthouse Forum letter a brewin'? Nah, more than likely she is just in on the joke, and the joke in this case, is me and my Wang.

She leads me into the mastubatory suite, and goes through the process, what goes where, what stickers go on what, which forms need to be filled out. I am barely listening though, as I take in the situation and the layout with all the skills at my disposal. No, not the Zombie Plan, but the Design Professional. The architecture of the room is simple, but honest. A green leather recliner is in one corner of this 5' x 8' "room", with a file cabinet next to it, and a stack of disposable "drapes" next to it, one of said drapes is already on the arm of the chair. I suppose I am supposed to lay the drape on the chair before i sit back, relax, and go at it. Opposite the chair is a television / vcr combo, mounted in brackets above a clinical sink, with a small garbage can next to the sink.

At no point does my newest health care worker mention the vcr, the remote control, the drapes, the sink, nothing. She obviously knows that I am a masturbatory ninja, and should have no problems taking care of business. She leaves, instructing me to push the doorbell on the inside of the room to summon her back when I am done.

I explore, of course. I peek into the vcr slot to see what they have on deck for me, or if there is even a movie in there. No lie, there is a movie, and this movie is no less than "Booby Trapped". I giggle, then realze that this room isn't sound proofed, so I should probably butch up a bit.

I don't use the chair, the drapes or even the magazine located next to the chair (encased in a plastic case, ingenious!) but remain standing for the duration of my stay. I finish, summon my new naughty buddy, and we conclude our business together.

Simple, straightforward and done. But, I ask you, who designed the mastubatory room? Was it men, was it women? Who brought the movies in? Were they ordered from a catalogue? They must have been, nobody goes into the porn store and walks out with "Booby Trapped", which is a shame, because it was a fine film, or at least the 2 minutes that I saw of it were stellar.

Is this the view of men that we have cultivated and embraced over the years? All men want / need for sexual release is a porno movie, a leather recliner and a few minutes? If that is the case, why are so many women shocked when we don't engage in 40 minutes of tantric foreplay? What would the room look like if it was essential for a woman to masturbate to orgasm in order for some medical procedure to be accomplished? I bet it would be nicer, maybe even with some carpeting, or even a dimmable light. A scented candle would have killed ya, Fertility Clinic?! Romance me, dammit!

Who am I kidding, I could have hung out in there all afternoon. Give me a cheesesteak and a Guiness and that room would have been a little slice of heaven. At the end of days, I am really just as simple an animal as their expectations of me would have you believe. For now you will have to excuse me, as I need a little nappies.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Maybe I Haven't Made Myself Clear...

But I really, really love that Magic: the Gathering (MtG) game. I have such a relationship with this game, it is amazing that I ever have "down" times with it. I went and played the game again last night with my local Hierophant, and we had a delightful time with the new cards, and talking about what the game had meant for us all these years.

I am not sure about the exact history of MtG, but MY history with the game is pretty special to me. My Aunt Linda gifted to me $25.00 for my birthday, some 12 years ago. I used this money to buy two starter decks and a rules book. I was hooked right away.

But think about this. The person I bought those "gateway" gaming drugs from is still a good friend of ours, and I have met his two kids, born into their family since that introductory meeting. This man (soon to be called Buttery Pat) was at first intimidating to me, but I soon grew to love him as the snuggly big ogre that he can appear to be at times. I always had a place to go, and something to do. Meeting new people has always been easy for me, but comptetition of any kind would usually turn me into the superhero known only as the Trembling Sweat. Here comes Magic the Gathering, a fun game that introduced me to the idea that you could play a game, lose or win, and pick those cards up and play again. Sure, I still get the Mournful Mopes when I lose, but I am MUCH better than I was in the past.

My relationship with MtG also parallels other parts of my life. My relationship with the Goodely Wyfe was in its fledglinghood at the same time I picked up the game for the first time. Did I mention the Magic Cards that I took with me on our honeymoon? Probably for the best that I don't, or be knownst forevermore as Dorkus Maximus. My brother and I have never been very close, much to my chagrin, but playing Magic brought us together in some crazy marathon card playing sessions that i will treasure forever.

In going through my cards in preparation for last nights game, I was hit with a more sentimental feeling that when I go through old high school yearbooks. The maligned Sedge Troll, the plucky Prodigal Sorceror, the fiendish Lord of the Pit and the persnickety Alladin's Lamp all hold a special place in my hearty heart. The latter two in the list were the first ever rare cards I ever got, from my first starter deck. The Goodely Wyfe received the Force of Nature and Nevinyrral's Disk as her rares...two cards which I have NEVER owned in a dozen years of collecting and trading! Nest of Harpies that she is, she would never let me borrow them either! Curse her proprietary heart! I covet! I covet!

I referred to MtG as the gateway drug of gaming, and that much is very true. I was (OMG, can it be) non-involved in gaming from high school until after college sometime, when I picked up those first decks. I am back into gaming with a fiendish glee reminiscent of Calligula at the All You Can Eat Sex Buffet (tm). This immersion into gaming has brought me the best and closest friends I have ever had. Friends that will sit with me in the Old Folks Home, playing cards and rolling dice into our 90s.

I would like to write more, but I have a fever, and the only prescription, is more Magic cards! Oh, the heady aroma of new card fresh out of the pack! Oh sweet rapture of the Card Sorting and Storage! Glee! Glee! Glee!

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Ain't Nothing Going On But the Bomb Ass Rap Song

A double dip of Blog proliferation. A shorty right now, but I had to share that I am listening to XM satelite radio, and am enjoying old skool hip hop and rap. I love this stuff!

For as long as my parents are alive, and beyond...

I will always be their youngest son, their "baby" boy. And you know what? I love it, I love it, I love it! Bob and Lorraine are excellent parents, far from perfect, but they have beaten the odds, and stayed together for so many years it hardly matters anymore, and still consider each other "a good date".

The 'rents came by for a few days in our latest installment of "Come Babysit My Husband", on their way to Georgia and other points south for, well, as long as they damned well please. That is only one of the joys of being retired. I have long since given up trying to make their stays with us "special" by tapping into all the splendour that the Washington DC area has to offer, and now merely throw myelf into their loving arms, and let them do for me what we both need to have done. They take care of me.

Oh, I am sure they know that I can take care of myself, are are also confdent in my Goodely Wyfe's ability to take care of me, perhaps more so. But you know what? These crazy kids need to provide for me, and why the heck not let them?

I left for work, after gobbling down a lovely diner breakfast with Papa Lach, charismatic me feeling like the elephant man in the company of David Niven as I watch my father not only get a free newspaper, but finagle a free breakfast for himself, and an invitation to go home with the family that runs the place for dinner. I pay double for my breakfast, or would have if I could ever get my wallet out around the Big Guy. The man is a force of nature. It comes so naturally to him, like an otter that instinctfully knows that his tummy is the perfect clam smacking platform.

Returning home that night, it was as if cobbler's elves had come by, and bequeathed upon me the labours of their day. Lo! A new toilet seat welcomes my delicate behind! Alas! Three way light bulbs have been installed in lamps what can benefit from such a triforcated luminary display! Of course! My nigh-barren refrigerator is now happily stocked with more meats of more varieties that my stick shaking hand grew weary at the attempts. My parents sit, smug and awaiting their such deserved accolades at their hard labours of the day. Oh, wait, it is now 5:30pm, and my parents are actively awaiting another of the joys of retirement...the Early Bird Dinner.

But which downtown fancy spot should such dignitaries be taken to? Which 5 star 11 course meal could possibly repay this marvellous duo for their efforts in creating and raising this prodigal son? We head to the Outback Steak House, a restaurant that we could go to in any city, in any state. Again, relax, put your opinions aside, and remember that no matter how simple it may seem, you are dining not in an Outback Steak House, but an Outback Steak House with Bob & Lorraine Lach.

The ensuing conversations, drink orders, miscellaneous mutually hearing impaired bantering, bickering and blabbering on all of our parts would be more than sufficient to create a comedy-drama series on any major network. Forget the fact that my Mother's side of the family has decided that Christmas would now be celebrated on Thanksgiving, or the 37 different verses of the Happy Birthday Song what we heard while having dinner. Forget my ordering the Prime Rib, the order which would send our family scurrying for cover whenever my father would deign to place it during my childhood. It was delightful, easy, and fun. I wouldn't have had a nicer time anywhere. For once in my architectural flavoured by theatrical lifestyle...Place did not matter one bit.

Being on their schedule is a wonder. Dinner at 5pm, home by 6:30pm..in bed by 9pm! Amazingly well rested, I awake to find that my parents have slipped away in the morning, probably at 5am to begin their journey, but not before stripping the beds, cleaning the bathroom, and buying donuts for their Baby Boy. It would have been nice to see them again that morning, to witness and learn from Papa Lach at the diner, to listen to my Mom talk about the slot machines and her life growing up, but at the same time I knew that I allowed them to do exactly what they wanted to and needed to do. Take care of their baby boy, and leave satisfied that he was safe, happy and resting. I have an image, no matter how contrived, of them looking in on my 37 year old sleeping form before they leave for the next leg of their trip, as they must have looked in on my 1 year old, 10 year old, 17 year old etc. form, lovingly, and hopefully satisfied that they have done a good job, and that I have achieved in their eyes, that most coveted of all accolades.

I am a "Good Boy".