July 29, 2005

A Demise Postponed

I lived.

It was actually very very very fun, the whitewater rafting. They had this one spot where they took a picture, and I meant to go buy it for the blog, but I forgot to even go look at it. I was tired! But it's okay because my brother (who may I remind you MAKES HIS LIVING, I mean, actually FEEDS HIS FAMILY by working as an artist and sculptor) decided to recreate the moment with an original work that he drew on his IPAQ with a Stylus and a program called Pocket Artist. Here it is:


*cough* It's not his best work.

Even his 11-year -old daughter, Erin, usually his biggest fan, was NOT impressed.
Erin: You can draw better than this, Dad.
Bobby: I'm quite proud of it.
Erin: ... *I* Can draw better than this, Dad.

I am the one with the blue oar. The extremely tanned blonde in the back is my sister-in-law, Julie. She went on the rafting trip, and she HOPED to get a tan, but it was overcast and we all left the boat as luminously pale (read: Pasty. Read: SO pasty it would not be surprising if our eyes grew over into flesh-humps like those cave fish who have never been touched by light) as we had been when we entered it. In real life, Julie is a gorgeous blonde who always hopes to tan but just doesn't have the melanin for it---although I personally would kill for her metabolism and her bone structure, these things are ashes in her mouth when summer comes and she wishes to be bronzier. She asked Bobby to fake a tan for her in the re-enactment. And she wanted George-Clooney-Level-White, sparkly teeth. Bobby made her look like she WANTED to look, which is, I suspect, the secret to a successful career in portraiture. And also possibly the key to a successful marriage. *grin*

In his defense, Boby created the rafting re-enactment in about 4 minutes in the total dark; We were watching Dolly Parton's Dixie Stampede Show (which a reg here recommended in the comments!) And since my mother and children made it clear that there was no way we were escaping TN without SEEING A SHOW, and with the threat of MUNGO BOB hanging like a bucket of mucus over my head, I booked DOLLY's show. I like her voice. (DIGRESSION: I was going to say that Mungo Bob was hanging LIKE THE SWORD OF DAMACLES but I couldn't remember how to spell Damacles and I am too tired to google it so my solution was to change the DAMACLES to MUCUS and SWORD to BUCKET, and I stand by this decision.)

Or rather, as the children were watching. My son, Sam, says the Dixie Stampede is not only the best show he has ever seen, but the most fun he has ever had in his entire eight years on the earth, and the best place currently in existence, and he wants to live there. Maisy Concurs. Erin says it's second best only to Disneyworld, and even Daniel (who is fourteen and too cool for a lot of the stuff the littler kids yearn to experience) had a good time and was entertained. My brother, on the other hand, says that when truly evil people, serial killers and suchlike, die unforgiven, they are sent to spend eternity at the Dixie Stampede.

I quite enjoyed it, myself. They had BUFFALO! And well trained smarty-pants horses and pig racing and ostrich racing, etc. But I have to admit...I found it to be disturbing. For example it opened with seven Buffalo coming out and running around and rolling and looking bizarre and cheerful (VERY ODD ANIMALS! They look like big-headed pig-cow hybrids) and a man's booming, jovial voice told us of all the millions that once roamed the great plains. Then some white people in black braided wigs came out and the booming voice told us of the tribes who lived in harmony with the land and hunted the millions of of buffalo. Then they left, and more white people (this time in cowboy hats) came out in covered wagons, and the booming voice told us about the European settlers who---and here my brother leaned over and said, "Wiped out the tribes." And I whispered back, "And the Buffalo!"

And then later we watched a Southern Belle in a hoop skirt sing on the steps of what looked like Tara about the old-world sleepy charm of the anti-bellum South, and Bobby and I just boggled a little and played a version of an old car game where you listen to the first line of a country song and then substitute your own ending for it. Like she would sing, "Oh, there's no lovelier place in the world..." and Bobby would sing under his breath to me, "I've human chattel to brush out my curls..."

It was like Disney's Pocahontas: There's no way to suspend disbelief and purely enjoy the admittedly delightful spectacle and music and well trained trick animals and pyrotechnics if you have had ninth grade American history...

Maisy was most impressed with the trick riders, especially the one wo was sitting on "the white pony that I am going to ride and keep that is my white pony." In fact this morning she told my mother that God had visited her in the night. God told her she was great and that she could have the white pony. Now she is just sitting back waiting for us (or possibly The Lord) to deliver said animal as a tribute to her greatness. I suspect she is being somewhat spoiled this week (OH! UNDERSTATEMENT!) as she has LIVED on dessert and been told how pretty and smart and perfect she is an average of 19 times per half-hour, and as the week has progressed, so has her tendency toward imperious orders, and then she leans back and crosses her feet smugly and watches as the entire family scrambles to fulfill her teeniest desires. SERIOUS post vacation SPOILING DETOX must happen. I don't know that she is FIXABLE at this point. We may well have ruint her.

On the way OUT of the Dixie Stampede, she saw a pink stick pony...
Me: I want you to say a sentence that doesn't begin with the two words "I want..."
Maisy: *thinks for a second* Can I please have that stick pony?

At least she said please...my fluffy despot has exquisite manners.

Posted by joshilyn at July 29, 2005 11:01 AM

re: the drawing --- I think it's purty durn good for something done with a stylus in the dark.

re: The Dixie Stampede --- Hahahahahahaaaaa!!! I've always wanted to see this show and have never been able to talk anyone into going with me. I may have to go alone someday because I NEED to see it. (Did I mention that my family nickname is "The Heckler"?)

re: Maisy --- I don't think you can fix what ain't broke. You said a while back you thought you had birthed a belle. If you look up "belle" in the dictionary, I'm pretty sure it says "see also: fluffy despot". I'm just saying.

Posted by: DebR at July 29, 2005 11:51 AM

I was certain her rewording was going to be "I NEED that pink stick pony!" so really, you're ahead of the game with her.

But still, I may need to spend some time with her. Perhaps she can teach me her ways....

Posted by: Mir at July 29, 2005 1:34 PM

ROFL!!! I am with the non-tan skinny woman. I CANNOT TAN TO SAVE MY LIFE. Love the art. Can I purchase it in a frame for my den?? *snicker*

Posted by: Heather at July 29, 2005 1:51 PM

Dear Maisy: You have been a very good girl. In fact, you have been great. I am going to give you the white pony. Don't worry, I'll handle Mommy and Daddy. Your friend, God

Posted by: God at July 29, 2005 2:28 PM

In fact, Maisy, if you continue to be good the rest of the day, the Pink Stick Pony could be yours as well. Your friend, God

Posted by: God at July 29, 2005 2:31 PM

I'm with Maisy. Need a pink stick pony after trying to picture my family at the Dixie Stampede. We would have been asked to leave because of excessive snorting, hooting, sarcasm, and repetition of the phrase, "OH, PUHLEEZE!"

I do love those buffalo, though. May have to go for the buffalo. Oh wait - I forgot - I can see some out my window here in the Wild West...

Jill in Idaho, who has deer, elk, blue heron, river otter, beavers, squirrels, racooons, porcupine, canada geese, ducks, eagles, hawks, and owls in the backyard all of whom are most welcome

Posted by: Jilly at July 29, 2005 2:58 PM

Your daughter cracks me up. As do you.

Posted by: lizardek at July 29, 2005 4:24 PM

I KNEW the kids would like Dixie Stampede! I mean I was with hubby at age 48 at the time, was enthralled by it....lol. I just pictured you having a better time there than at Mungo Bubba's or whatever....I know that one day I will have to go back to the Stampede, since kids have been added to the family since the last go around. But at least the thought doesn't make me picture myself slain by "bowl weevils" and thrown into the Lil' Pigeon River. As for Maisy, I'm sorry, but you know she is pretty, beautiful, smart, talented, she can't help it.....she's a Belle from the South.

Posted by: Robbie at July 29, 2005 6:04 PM

Maisy's a clever girl ;) My daughter has wised up, and now says (to my chagrin) "I wish I could have....". Usually within earshot of someone (ie My Mom the Spoiler) who is more than happy to get it for her :P

Buffalo are cute. And tasty.

Posted by: Angel at July 29, 2005 7:16 PM

So I am totally assuming (because you won't catch me dead at the Dixie Stampeed)that it was a totally delusional reaccounting of White American history? poor buffalo, and I'm with the heckler - Bobby - and you - but I'm sure I would be escorted out if I were to sit through the first 10 minutes.

I find Bobby's rendering of the white water rafting adventure of 2005 perfect. His artful eye captured the moment in detail with the lovely neon white tinged ice blue skin perfectly of set perfectly with the neon yellow life vest. When does the sculpted miniture come out? Psst! it would make great Christmas presents for those who survived. I am glad you were all properly attired, we wanted you back. And so did Sam and Maisy and the white pony.

Thank you for including us in your vacation

Posted by: Cele at July 30, 2005 10:55 AM

'Scuse me...must wipe coffee off my monitor and write a screenplay called "The Fluffy Despot" for possible sale to Pixar.

Posted by: Aimee at August 1, 2005 11:13 AM