When me and Luis’ kids were little- they were about six and seven years old at the time I played them Joan Jett’s cover of the AC/DC song ” Dirty Deeds ”
They thought she was singing ” Dirty deeds, done by sheep ” .
So to this day that’s the way we sing it.
Other kids a few years older then they were at the time have a different but still highly amusing take on AC/DC – who- when they came to Seattle had first aid cars parked outside the Seattle Center Coliseum and first aid tents inside which I fondly referred to as ” The Vomitoriums” ( thank you Saturday Night Live )
Good times…and good music!
And now for … Dirty Deeds Done BY SHEEP….dirt cheap as rocked out by Joan Jett ( and STILL a family favorite )
” What do you want to be when you grow up?” asked one of my family members who should have known better then to ask me a question that demanded a sensible answer.
Or maybe they did know better, but at the time we were at my Aunt’s house and she had recently put in a wine cellar that was apparently well stocked with some high end stuff and most of the adults had made more then one trip down there for ‘wine tasting’.
I thought about it.
” A Werewolf.”
” Be serious.”
” I want to go to college and fly spaceships.”
” Good for you.”
I saw my Dad and one of his cousins standing in the doorway to the living room.
They were popping my Aunt’s homemade Bourbon Balls into their mouths. They were also looking at me like they were about to watch a train wreck and they could not, no matter how hard they tried- to look away.
They were also snickering.
” I want to go to college, fly spaceships but mostly I want to be a werewolf.”
” Anita, that’s the silliest thing you’ve ever said.”
My dad.took time away from getting hammered on candy and wine and said, ” No it isn’t. Not by a long shot.”
” From your lips to God’s ear Bert.” His cousin said.
I remember looking at them standing there and had I known the saying back then I would have said,
” Challenged Accepted.”
Sometimes we get wrapped up in the expectations and trapped in a cage of ideas that our families put us into- and you can’t fight it, you can resign yourself to it…
When I was about six years old my Dad’s cousin bought a puppy.
” Nicky” as we called him was as sweet as he was big.
Nicky turned out to be pretty big when he was full grown:
But my story starts here:
Shortly after this picture was taken our family was together for a holiday event and we were all in the backyard when I asked if I could hold Nicky’s leash. I was walking around the yard with Nicky when my Dad whistled for Nicky and Nicky who for his own reasons would spend his life thinking he was a puppy around my Dad took off like a shot.
He pulled me right off of my feet ( considering I was a shrimpy little kid that was no surprise) and I held on to his leash while he dragged me across what seemed like a thousand acres of lawn right to my Dad’s feet.
” Why didn’t you let go?” I remember everyone asking me.
I looked back at them with the same look they were giving me. That look said – ” did you loose your single brain cell or did you just forget to bring it along.”
The answer was obvious I said with the leash still firmly clenched in my hand.
” I didn’t want him to get away.”
I handed the leash over and dusted myself off and spit a bit of turf out of my mouth and I’m sure I didn’t just walk off.
” I liked you better, ” my Dad said to me when I was a teenager and we were arguing about something- which was odd because I wasn’t the type of kid to argue, which when I think back on it is what probably made him even angrier- ” when you were small.”
” And I like you better when I don’t have to be in the same room with you! ” I shouted back.
Later on the freeze was still on and my Dad said as I walked by, ” You know, you used to wait up for me to come home from work. I’d look in at you and your eyes were always opened. Even when you were a baby.”
I couldn’t imagine being that sweet and adorable. I couldn’t imagine that I had ever really felt affection for anyone at that stage in my life.
” I hope I NEVER have kids. ” I snapped.
I still wonder what went through my Dad’s head when I said that- if he remembered it when I told him I had planned on adopting my stepsons because I had no plans to ever have any children ‘ of my own. ‘
My Dad and I weren’t close as I grew up but in the last 6 years of his life I actually started to like him I enjoyed spending time with him, our talks about science .
He was actually a wonderful Grandfather.
So I hope he didn’t think about what I said that day.
On Christmas Eve my Sister and our Mom and my nieces went to the cemetery to set flowers on our Dad’s grave.
It was cold that day- bright and cold.
My nieces joined my sister at the graveside and one of my nieces looked down at her Grandfather’s grave and didn’t quite shout:
” Grandma stayed in the car. She’s cold. She said to say hi.”
When they told me that, I cracked up.
Dad would have too.
When I got to my Sister’s place later that day I let my dog out of the car and he took a victory lap around her yard and then he peed on her inflatable Rudolph. I called him back before he could whiz on her Santa but I may have been to late. I can’t be sure. My eyes were closed. Seeing him pee on a happy Rudolph so wrong.
That night when she hit the switch and the inflatable decorations started to fill with air and come to life Rudolph took the longest.
We watched him struggle to come to life and then he simply gave it up and started to shrink.
” I think Hamish’s pee killed him.” I said wondering how many other people were stringing those words together on Christmas Eve.
My sister loves my dog. ” No. I saw Rudolph’s Soul leave his eyes yesterday. It’s sad. I wonder if I can get one on sale after Christmas?”
I looked down at Hamish and he was wagging his tail.
” And here people think I’m the morbid one. I am outing you guys. ” I looked down at my dog. ” You too.”
They both walked into the house and my sister was laughing- or it could have been my dog.
It was one of those nights when the odd and macabre came joined my fmaily Christmas Festivities and to be honest-