Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Did You See Jesper?

A Boat Show Story by A Boat Show Novice
by Sassy Esquire

"Did you see Anna Kournikova?" she asked.

"No. But I did see Jesper Parnevik," I replied, squinting across the dock to see if the Party Barge was still open.

"Who’s that?"

Well, I have to admit...I wasn’t surprised that she didn’t know. It was slowly becoming apparent to me that I was one of the few people working my section of the 2004 Fort Lauderdale Boat Show who could recognize Jesper on sight, even without his trademark bill-flipped-up golf cap.

"Oh, he’s just a golfer," I answered dismissively. I was also learning that the veteran brokers are bitterly unimpressed by "the rich and famous". That is, unless "the rich and famous" are signing a check made out to a certain yacht brokerage house.

"Hey, do you think the Party Barge will be open when we get done?" I asked my new friend across the dock. "I think I’ll need a cocktail when this is over."

No, I am not a heavy drinker, in case you are wondering. But this is the Boat Show. You know how it is. You spend the whole day sitting on a yacht, tied up to a floating dock, hoping that the next new owner is about to slip out of his (or her) Sperry’s and ask for permission to board. Who doesn’t need a drink? Yeah, I’m jaded....and this is my first Boat Show.

Ok. I am not really that jaded. But it is my second day at the Show and I am a quick study. Jaded is the name of the game. Let me explain.

I am a land lubber. Yeah, I said it. I know nothing about boats. Or yachts, or whatever you call them. Heck, I can barely swim. But, as fate would have it, I am working the Boat Show. Yep. I am decked out (no pun intended) in a white polo shirt, khaki pants, and bare feet. I am sitting on the aft deck (hey, I said, "aft deck"!) of a 60 footer, with the sun in my eyes, making friends during the dry times with fellow "boat sitters" and crew. And I am loving it. And here are the highlights, from this landlubber’s point of view:

Boat Show, Day One (minus one): I am somehow enlisted to help bring the boat into the Show. "Ok. What do you mean, ‘bring the boat into the Show’?" I ask my Captain. "Handle the lines, etc. You know," he replies gruffly. Hmmm....actually, I don’t know. But I can fake it. We arrive before our scheduled time and manage to dock (even though I don’t know how to tie off a cleat).

Day One (for real this time): "So what do I have to do?" I ask the broker nervously. "Just sit on the boat, escort guests, and answer any of their questions." Oh great. They’re going to have questions???? "And remember," the broker tells me, "This is the VIP pre-show day so we might have some real takers." Oh goody. I proceed to memorize the boat listing. I don’t know what half of it means (twin CATs???) but I can I repeat it verbatim. Get to the Show around 10 a.m. (slightly delayed because it took me a while to choose the perfect earrings). Sit alertly in the sun on the aft deck. Drink a beer (but try to hide it from the broker). Show the boat to some people who are very proud of the fact that they know more about the boat than I do. Of course, I make sure they take their shoes off first. Drink another beer. Make friends with the people sitting on the boats across the dock. Go home.

Day Two (not a VIP day): Get to the Show around 10:15 a.m. Today I have opted for a blue Oxford button down shirt and shorts - it got way too hot yesterday in long pants. Say "hello" to my dock buddies across the way. Drink a beer (no point hiding it). Read the listing again. Decide it’s probably alright to use the day head. Read a magazine I find on board about yacht designers. Remember to put the flag out. Listen to music from the Party Barge. Wander through the boat and push every button - alas, none of them fires up the engines. See Scotty Pippin. Escort some guests. One of them invites me to work on a boat in Croatia (based on my overwhelming knowledge of Feadships.....hahaha!). Croatia guy also invites me to dinner. Hmmm. "No thanks. I’d get in trouble with the captain," I reply demurely.

Day Three: Today it is hot. Just like yesterday. And the day before that. I arrive around 10:30 a.m. Put flag out. Drink a beer (or three). Talk on my cell phone to friends around the world. "Yeah, I am just sitting here in South Florida on a million dollar yacht," I brag. See, I have realized that the only people impressed by my surroundings are those who aren’t here. "Yep. Saw Scotty Pippin yesterday. You know, the basketball player? No. He didn’t come aboard." Some guests arrive. I don’t care if they take their shoes off anymore. Frankly, I don't care if they make themselves an omelet in the galley. I leave the boat and go to Party Barge. Drink some frozen concoctions with new friends. Take a cab home.

Day Four: I think today is the last day. I can’t remember. I also don’t care. Get to the Show around noon. Look at the boat from the stern. Yep, she's still there. Forget to put the flag out. Drink a beer. Walk around the docks and board some other boats. Drink some beer from the other boats. Meet some other boat sitters and crew. Make plans for big after parties. Visit the crew lounge and get a free lunch (why didn’t I do this before?!) Go back to my boat. Escort some guests. Now I am making up answers to the questions: ("What does this do?" "Oh, that holds the spigot down on the pilot house wash basin." "And what is this silver thing?" "Oh, that? Just kick it.") Yes, I have basically lost all interest in the boat. And I have basically lost my will to live. It is clear to me this boat is never going to sell. Certainly not on my watch. I think the guests are on to me. Perhaps it was when I told them that the silver thing on the bow of the boat was called a wind-ass, as opposed to a windlass. Or maybe it was when I told one lady that she didn’t need a stove on board, she could just go to McDonald’s for dinner. Well, let’s face it. I am like a fish out of water here (pun intended) and I just want it to be over. I want to go home and watch football from the safety of my sofa. I don’t want any more beer. Or sun. Or celebrity spotting. Most importantly, I don’t ever want to hear another one-man’s-band remake of a Jimmy Buffet song. Oh yeah, and I want that cocktail.

All that being said, I do have fond memories. For starters, I saw Jesper Parnevik. As an avid golfer, watching the infamously nattily dressed Swedish golfer stroll past my boat's stern was worth the tedium of having to explain who he was to everyone. But my best memories of the Boat Show are the friends I made on the docks. We chatted during the day about everything and nothing. We suffered through the megayacht wannabe owners. We smiled all day. We were not ashamed of our broken toe nails. We all had bruises on our knuckles from the temporary shackles on the floating docks. We were tight. We were compadres.

And, of course, I also enjoyed the Party Barge and the crew lounge - I won about five THOUSAND dollars at the makeshift blackjack table. Too bad it was five thousand FAKE dollars.

And I did enjoy showing the boat. I learned a lot: I now know that twin CATs are apparently engines and that it helps if you tie off a bow line as well as a stern one (don’t ask).

Will I work the Boat Show next year? Sure! Well, if the insurance company lets me.....Hey, do you think Jesper will be there?

Saturday, October 02, 2004

So One Time At Boarding School....

by The Sassy One

Did I ever you tell you about that time? I guess it comes to mind now because my sons are at that age. You know "the age" - taller than me, facial hair that requires razors, secret porn stash....

Anyway, this one time at boarding school....oh wait, I haven't explained boarding school to you guys yet. Well, see...I went to boarding school. But I was a "day student", i.e. one who didn't sleep over. And.....(drum roll, please) I was the only girl.

Ok, let's not get violent. Settle down, ladies. Yes, I was the only female at an all boys' boarding school. In Barbados. (I know: Surrounded by tanned, teenaged boys on a tropical island? What more could you want?) My dad was a teacher there and I was allowed to attend from the age of 9 through 13 until, in the words of the powers that be, I became "a distraction."

So, there I was. Me, and a bunch of boarding school boys, and the headmaster, Big G. I don't even remember his real name now, but I remember he carried a riding crop. He believed in corporal punishment. Hey - he was British and it was the 70's. I suppose the pith helmet was stowed away somewhere. And possibly he didn't get word of the independence movement on the former British colony. (Barbados gained independence in 1966).

I know what you are thinking: there's no way she left that school a virgin. Well, you're wrong! Those boys treated me like their little sister and, when our private school bus pulled into the bus terminal downtown, they stood up for me in the face of all those rowdy "public school" bullies.

But there was this one time....

It was one of the most defining moments of my life. It was Field Day - an intramural sports competition between various factions at the school (we called them "Houses"). I was in Blue House, which had a great record against the other Houses during the annual track and field meets. And I was 12. My male classmates were 14 plus (yes, I was an overachiever and a couple of years ahead of my time). Everyone had to participate in some event and, thanks to my Dad's renown as a track star, I was selected to run the 100 meters.

"But, I don't know if I am fast enough," I whined to Dad.

"You'll be fine. Just remember to warm up, get out of the blocks fast, and don't peak too early," the former Olympian replied.

"Yeah. Ok. Whatever." Who was I kidding? I was a short, buck-toothed little girl...I didn't even have a hint of a chest yet! There was no way I stood a chance against my older, testosterone-enhanced classmates.

I sulked and sulked in the days leading up to the "Great Race" but no one seemed to care. I thought about inducing some projectile vomiting but that seemed a little extreme, especially considering I was only being asked to run 100 meters. It wasn't like I was being asked to wash dishes or clean my room.

And so the day came.

I wore a customized t-shirt (it was election time on the island and my grandparents were big democrats so I used a Sharpie to announce that I was running for the "Dipper" - Errol Barrow, the incumbent Prime Minister) and declined my Dad's offer of spiked running shoes. I ran in bare feet.

Can you picture me? Pig-tails, braces, white t-shirt with clumsy black lettering on it, and no shoes, standing at the starting line of a dirt track. Surrounded by boys who were at least 2 years older, all of whom had something to prove: "Man! You can't let that little girl beat you!"

I don't remember the start of the race. I don't remember the middle. I only remember the end. Not the finish line. The end. I was suddenly being hoisted above the shoulders of older boys in Blue House, who were chanting, "Springer! Springer! Springer!" Somehow, my little feet (and that's the last time they were 'little') had carried me to victory. Or was it my fear? Or my pride? Who knows. Who cares.

So, one time at boarding school....I won a race.

It changed my life. After that day, I no longer needed to prove anything vis-a-vis men. Ya know what I mean, ladies? It's a great lesson to learn at 12. And I'll leave this at that.

Thursday, August 26, 2004

A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To Europe

by Sassy Esquire

The woman standing in the aisle says, "What other option is there? I'm not going to leave my child with that monster." The 'monster' was previously described as mean. The child in question, unseen. But she does have her seat cranked back into my lap on this flight to England.

The husband/father makes the call on the airplane's in-seat phone. Maybe the kid won't have to stay with the mean monster after all. The wife/mother scrutinizes him as he talks. Is he doing it right? Saying the right things to the unwitting listener at the end of the dollar-a-minute call? Is he being firm enough? She looks dissatisfied with his performance and I suspect that's par for the course within that union.

The airplane's captain screws the whole scene up (and saves husband/father via the intercom) by ordering everyone back to their seats. Apparently, there's some turbulence ahead. Husband/father probably thinks to himself, "You got that right, cap'n."

The woman standing in the aisle obeys the captain and returns to her seat.

Husband/father puts the headphones on my unseen lap sitter. How come Mom didn't sit with the little girl? Interesting. Daddy seems to coddle the little girl. I think she is at least old enough to talk. Conversations seem to be taking place between her and daddy. But if she is old enough to talk....Hmmmm, that means the "I'm not leaving my child with that monster" speech previously delivered by mom seems a tad imprudent. Or very prudent. Women can be manipulative bitches like that (yours truly included).

I have to go pee.

During my pee break (lady sitting next to me was not thrilled with my bladder's timing), I finally observed the child. I saw small, brown, and lemon plaid-clad legs sticking off the edge of her seat. I didn't see her face but I imagine it's largely composed of big brown, long-lashed eyes.

Dad is back on the in-seat phone. Ut oh. Does militant, mean-person-hating mom know about this?? She's not here to monitor the script! Yikes! Dad is running with scissors here! Phew! In a wise move, he stands up and calls militant mom up from her back seat. She is Monday morning quarterbacking now: "Did you tell them we.....? And did you mention the....?" She seems placated, but shakes her head. You know how some people are never happy?

By the way, militant mom has orange stains on her white v-neck t-shirt. Doritos, the CSI team in my head suggests. How do you get stains on your boobies if you aren't sitting with your babies?

"Umm...folks...the seat belt sign is on for your safety. Umm...you're advised to return to your seat." Did he say seat? As in the singular? This directive is clearly aimed at aisle-squatting militant mom. Again, she complies with the captain, and heads back down the aisle. I think she is one of "those women" -- you know the type, they obey every man, 'cept their fool husbands.

I think her hubby is a good guy.

We land. I squeeze out of my seat and stand, curious to finally see the face of my little friend. I feel like we should shake hands or something seeing as how she was practically laying in my lap the entire flight. I turn and see her. She is about 3 years old, standing on her seat, holding a doll, and staring right at me. Yep, their big and brown and have long lashes.

"Hey," I mumble. "What's up? I like your Dora The Explorer doll."


"So what brings you here?" I ask, desperate to make conversation with the child who won't stop staring at me.

Daddy smiles at me and then I sense mommy's eyes boring into my back. I turn and realize that she does not appreciate me making nice with her man and her child (and her daughter). I turn back to Dora The Explorer.

"Did you enjoy the flight? Did the turbulence bother you?" Why won't she speak to me?

Then she announces, "I'm gonna put on my payamas and take my medicine and go to bed."

Fair enough. Me too.

Thursday, April 29, 2004

I Live With A Ghost

by Sad Sassy

I live with a ghost
I'm getting weary of being a nice host

I live with a ghost
Must I play host?
Must I play nice?
Must I sacrifice?

I live with a ghost
Does he love her most?
Will I move on?
Will I be wrong?

I live with a ghost
I want none of her ills
None of her thrills
None of her bills
The price is too high
My heart drained dry.

So I live with a ghost
What will I do?
I turn to you.

Saturday, April 03, 2004

I Passed The Bar!

I know, I know....you all think I've never seen a bar I wanted to pass - without going inside and getting bombed, that is. But that shows what you know! Despite my very sporadic studying, I passed the Florida Bar exam on the first try! Woo hoo! So - for those of you keeping count at home - that's TWO bars I've passed without getting bombed!

Thursday, January 15, 2004

Fort Lauderdale or Bust: The Arrival of Hurricane Sassy

Hurricane Sassy Blows Into Town
My Departure from Delaware

by Sassy Esquire

Well - we made it.

Never mind the oil tanker that exploded in front of us when it went careening off the overpass, landing on I-95 (and several other cars) outside of Baltimore. Never mind the apparently random selection of a yellow Ryder truck (just like ours) two cars ahead of us for inspection and detention by State troopers at the toll booth (hey Adria - tell the Feds they picked the wrong truck!). Never mind the complete lack of radio stations playing something other than dial-in religious talk shows and bad country music in South Carolina (oh and car dealership commercials with Arnold Schwarzenegger impersonators: "I came to this country with only a bottle of baby oil and a muscle strap...."). And never mind the very bitter argument between driver and passenger over whether Live is indeed a talented band. (That argument was second only to the one recently recorded between two Delaware room mates over whether Green Bay deserved to be in the play offs....). Never mind all that stuff...we made it in one piece (well, two if you count us as separate individuals). Safe. Sound. And still on speaking terms - although there were a couple of touch and go moments when one of us would threaten to unhitch the Jeep from the towing trailer and drive the rest of the way separately.

Highlights of this trip include: Angela, the night clerk at Holiday Inn Express in Florence, SC, who gave me a free upgrade to a suite with a jacuzzi and an additional $40 off the price; the approximately 124 billboards for "South of the Border" (Chili today, Hot tamale); Ben's discovery that washing down 400 mgs of No Doze with a 20 oz Coke doesn't actually keep him awake; my first time driving a 15' van with a trailer attached during the slalom portion of our journey (miles and miles of construction with narrowed lanes and orange cones outside of Jacksonville); and Ben's phone call to me as we sat in rush hour traffic outside of West Palm Beach (he just wanted to chit chat and see how I was doing...and yes, I was sitting next to him in the cab of the truck...and yes, I answered the phone...and yes, we chatted over the phone for a while). You see, I am accustomed to such phone calls, e.g. Jazzy (my one-time roommate) calling me from across the living room...Jazzy calling me from across the bar....Jazzy calling me from upstairs....(Ed. note: Hey, Jazzy! Have a nice life!).

So...18 hours of drive time and over 1100 miles later, I am now the newest South Florida resident. Yep cabbage. Complete with annoying encounters at the bank while trying to open a checking account, cable installation woes, car insurance increases, and Bar application madness. And I haven't even made my "appointment" to go to the DMV yet! Oy vey!

It's true....people move WAYYYY slower here in South Florida. At the bank this morning, I was tempted to jump over the desk, forcibly remove the clerk by her throat, and type in the information myself (it took her two full minutes to type in my name). And don't get me started on the drivers! Turn signals are apparently optional equipment on most cars and the lanes are only marked as a suggested route...you are free to drive in the middle of the road...slowly...while talking on your phone...and stopping randomly to fix your makeup. I said to Ben, "I am surrounded by retards, old people, and bad drivers. Welcome to f*cking Florida!" He laughed and replied, "Hey - if it wasn't for the fact that we have the best weather in the entire country, I wouldn't live here myself!" Great...(to quote Adam Sandler in "The Wedding Singer") that's information I could have used yesterday!

That all being said, I am happy to report that I don't give a flying fig. You know why? Cuz it's 74 degrees and sunny outside, with a slight breeze coming off the ocean. Who cares about the rest of that stuff? I am drinking a Corona, sporting flip flops and Oakleys, chilling on the back patio, watching the palm trees sway. Changes in latitude...and all that. I think another two months of this weather and I will also be moving slower, having lost every vestige of northeastern impatience (and a few brain cells, I'm sure).

We have hired the Nizzle to help us unload the van tomorrow. (The Nizzle is Ben's nephew and my nephew-in-law-by-proxy-once-removed). Nizzle is willing to work for a ham and cheese sandwich from My Market. We also randomly ran into another friend last night, Peter, who said he would be over to help as well. Peter is willing to work for beer. I guess the truck will get unloaded quick enough. Interestingly, no one has volunteered to find room for my shoes....Where is Imelda when you need her?

Anyway, it's time to take the top of the Jeep and enjoy it! Hellllo Florida!

Tuesday, January 13, 2004

Jazzy Posts A Story

Dateline: Wilmington, Delaware
January 13, 2004

by Jazzy The Finn

Today marks the end of what will long be remembered as the "clubhouse" era in Delaware history. Wire reports confirm what Delawareans already feared to be true: Jo Springer (aliases Sassy, Crackwhore, Clotwhore, Danny Parker, Tom Van Allen, Kylie, Halle, Mitch, and Kevin (or was it Perry?)) was seen making a run for the border today.

Springer reportedly crossed the border late today heading southbound on I-95, in a U-Haul truck with the cryptic phrase "Is that a cattle prod?" emblazoned on the back of the vehicle. There are unconfirmed reports that there was a string bikini tied to the antenna, and that Springer was heard screaming, "Freedom trail to Fort Lauderdale, Florida or bust!" from the front of the truck. One witness reported seeing thousands of shoe boxes strapped to the top of the vehicle and a man wearing a Captain's hat in the front seat next to Springer.

Springer was seen saying goodbye to one of her co-conspirators yesterday, at her city home in Trolley Square. Lala (the tall leggy blonde) was spotted fleeing the residence in tears, following a difficult goodbye. Lala was seen wandering around a K-Mart parking lot later in the day, muttering something about underwear and a to-go cup. Apparently, Lala fled the scene upon overhearing an innocent bystander announce that he thought John Madden had "sausage fingers." Lala is now reportedly at home, packing her bikinis and loading her own U-Haul.

Other persons affiliated with Springer were seen gathering at a local watering hole, Mikimotos, late last night. Most are under investigation by federal authorities, and local federal agent, James Madison, would neither confirm nor deny that Ed "Big Nickel" Kantrell, Danielle "Double Barrel" Grant, Staci "I Want You Back" Hawthorne, June "Get Me Outta Here" Sampson, and Steve "Nips" Rapstar were in attendance.

The Guava Pitt Gazette has been able to confirm that both Double G and Jazzy made an appearance at Mikimotos to wish Springer well. GPG has been unable to confirm, however, whether they were wearing their traditional clubhouse superhero garb.

Double G cut the long goodbye short, presumably to pick up her "children". Friends of Double G say they have never actually met said children, and believe they are a convenient excuse to leave uncomfortable social situations quickly. The Guatamalan, with nerves of steel, managed to exit the location without shedding any tears, realizing that her recent (planned) unemployment meant that frequent trips to South Florida were inevitable.

Jazzy, Springer's former roommate, had to be physically removed from the restaurant by another guest following a painful and teary goodbye. Jazzy could be heard screaming, "You're my boy, Blue!" as she was dragged kicking and screaming from the bar.

Upon arriving at the couple's country home later that evening, Jazzy reportedly made herself one of her signature cocktails (Bacardi Limon and Sprite) and sat in the dark watching some of their favorite TV material: Sports Center, Old School, John Cusack movies, soft core porn, and movies with horses in them. Sources tell us that at one point Jazzy attempted to speak J-Jive with herself, but unable to successfully capture the witty repartee alone, sulked back into the kitchen for more alcohol.

Jazzy is now on suicide watch, and was seen this morning being chained to her desk by an unnamed partner at the law firm where she and Sassy worked together.