Tag Archives: Dave

A series of unsolved mysteries

Once upon a time, my sister Erica and I co-authored a book called “The Mad Tourist”. We obsessively returned to the phrase “it was destined to be the greatest unsolved mystery of his career,” and took great delight in inserting it in the most ludicrous contexts. Today, I am going to examine the greatest unsolved mysteries of my life. I have high hopes that via the inter-relational magic of the blogging world, someone out there may have answers for me. Could that someone be you? Ask yourself that question and report back to me.

Mystery #1

The tall Ethiopian man. He lives in our neighborhood, and wears a neon shirt (orange or green) and a tracksuit come rain or shine. He recently explanded his wardrobe to include a shirt with horizontal stripes–when I saw it, I was shocked. “Wow, a new shirt,” I mused as I walked to the train to go to work. “I wonder why he has a new shirt.”

About 2 weeks ago, on our way to the El stop in the morning, my husband and I spotted him in a new all-yellow tracksuit that was shining like the very sun itself. “Hey, look at our friend,” my husband said. “Wow,” I said. “Yeah,” he said. “Uh huh,” I added. I mean, this is a lot of new clothes happening after a whole year of just two shirts. Something is going on here.

Every day I see him walking up and down the block calmly, contemplatively, frequently with his hands in his pockets. He is almost invariably alone. I rarely see him interacting with anyone. Does he have a job? Is he the ‘lookout guy’ for some kind of neighborhood ‘dealio’ that I shouldn’t really be mentioning or inquiring into? Does he really just walk around the neighborhood, all day long? Or do we just happen to catch him when we’re ambling around, and he’s equally curious about why we seem to always be walking about? Does he have an identical blog post . . . but about me? “Saw that weird looking freckled girl again . . . looks like she finally got a new coat after a year of wearing the rattiest looking grey carpet sack you can imagine. . . she couldn’t stop looking at my new yellow tracksuit, not sure what’s up with that  . . . wonder if she’s the lookout girl for some kind of neighborhood ‘dealio’ since she’s always walking around . . . I mean, what does she do all day? Does she have a job, or what? . . . “

Once after returning from a walk on the beach I saw him standing in front of a “No Outlet” sign–as I passed, he pointed at this sign and laughed aloud.

There was nobody else around to witness this laugh.

If you are that Ethiopian man and you are reading this, who are you please? Do you have a family? What do you do all day? My husband suggested that maybe you are our neighborhood’s guardian angel. Please confirm at your earliest convenience.

Mystery #2

This picture of my new brother-in-law Dave. Could somebody please explain?

What?? And why?

I mean, why is he holding that pig? Did the pig come from the bucket on the right? Or is the pig going into the bucket on the right? Does the pig love Dave as much as Dave appears to love the pig? Is the pig enjoying the tight embrace, or is the pig actually struggling to escape Dave’s vise-like grip? Why is Dave so upset? Is this a “Charlotte’s Web” story in which the runt of the litter is going to be slaughtered and Dave realized via a magical spider that this pig was Something Special?

Thank you for your assistance.

Mystery #3

Where does the dirt come from? Where???

(By the way, my husband–bless his manly heart–totally didn’t get this mystery when I asked him to proof my post. “Huh?” he said. “It doesn’t make sense. What dirt?” And then I laughed and laughed and cried and laughed some more. I’m happy for him . . . really. If I were oblivious to the dust constantly settling on the furniture 2 seconds after I wipe it down, my life might be a happier place.)

Mystery #4

Supposedly this is me at 7 years old.

But I demand a careful investigation–what? Who? How? Whence? Forthwith?

Run for the hills! That’s all I can say.

Mystery #5

My extended family. During the reception at my sister’s very-blogged-about wedding this past July, my cousin Charles and his wife Rachel got up to demonstrate how kissing should be done. This is what happened. First, a running leap into Charles’ arms . . .

. . . and then a passionate dip. Please look closely at the faces of the people watching.

What mutations in the genetic line produced such . . . ballsiness? Daring? Panache? Utterly unabashed showmanship? And even worse–do I have those impulses somewhere inside me, and will they surface with a bang in an embarrassing episode I will never live down?

Charles, Rachel–you have earned my undying admiration. Wow.

Update: Charles and Rachel have just announced they are having a baby! I couldn’t be more excited, and I’m desperately trying not to do the math that takes us back in time 3 months . . . right about to Erica’s wedding weekend. OK.

In the next day or two, I will be setting up a toll-free hotline (1-800-JENNAS-UNSOLVED-MYSTERIES, or 1-800-536627-86765833-697837437). If you think you have the answer to any of these questions, please dial in using the touch tone menu. Representatives will be standing by. I considered offering a cash reward for answers, but decided to use it to buy a fancy coffee for myself at Starbucks instead–I hope you’ll understand.

Dave fights dirty

My new brother-in-law Dave has turned the tables. Some of you may recall my baby-making instigation right before their wedding in which I urged the general public to push Dave and Erica towards multiplying and filling the earth.

About a week later I was calmly riding the bus on a hot Sunday when my cell phone buzzed. My sisters are pretty much the only sources of texts on my phone, so I was surprised to see an unfamiliar number. Curious, I opened it, not knowing the torrent I was about to tap into.

I relay to you the content; “D” is each new text from Dave:

D: Hi jenna its dave, erica and I have exciting news-we’re going to have another little nephew or niece! SO EXCITED! So get crackalackin! We await the good news!

Side note: I was very confused here, since our sister Heidi is indeed pregnant, but nobody else in either family is. I didn’t realize at the time that he was using what is called “assumptive language” in the sales industry. Talk like it’s going to happen, and chances are much higher that it will.

Me: Heidi is having twins??? And you two had better get “crackalacking” yourselves in 1 week!

D: Little hands and little feet-so cute. The world needs your progeny.

D: Tiny baby curls . . .

Me: Are you trying to brainwash me?

D: Teeny little shoes

Me: Stop! Stop! I know exactly what you’re up to Dave!

D: Itty bitty feeties


D: Aaaaaaaaand . . . GO!!

Me: Thankfully my hubby is out of town this weekend. By the time he returns tuesday this brainwashing session will have lost its effect . . .

D: Maybe you’ll start getting random baby catalogs in the mail…just sayin

Me: What!?!? You little manipulator!!

D: Yeah. We are prepared to fight dirty.

D: Imagine tiny fingers wrapped around your man’s pinky…

D: How precious would that be?

D: Teeny tiny itty bitty scrunched up noses …

D: Little noses scrunched up right before a little sneeze …

Judge for yourselves, but Dave does indeed fight dirty. Who can withstand the onslaught of imagery in these texts? Powerful stuff, man.

Later that evening I started telling the story to a friend at church. I pulled out my phone and showed her the long line of texts from the same number. I meant it to be funny, but instead of laughing as I expected to do, suddenly I started crying as the image of tiny fingers curled around my husband’s pinky took hold. With the threat of a lagoon of mascara, I grabbed a tissue and tried to pad away any black streaks.

Dave made me cry. And he almost made me really mess up my make-up.

This all means something–but what??

About a week later, I got a follow up text that just said:

D: *achoo*

Then about a month went by. I thought he had probably forgotten about our little battle. But don’t let the innocent looks of this young couple fool you.

They’re just not to be trusted. My 5 year wedding anniversary rolled around, and whaddya know–my phone went “ka-bling.” I had a new text.

D: Happy anniversary! Just think, sweet little baby toes, soft baby ringlets, and a sweet baby voice chirping happily and cooing . . .

3 hours went by. My phone went “ka-bling” again.

D: . . . Little one all snoozy and snuggly warm in footie pajamas, wrapping his baby arms around your neck and nuzzling his precious face into your shoulder . . .

D: Are you ignoring me??

Me: Um…yeah! That’s what my mom told me to do with bullies!

D: Hey!! I’m your sister!

Me: Using Dave’s phone, eh?

D: Yes. I have no coverage with mine and his job doesn’t allow them.

Me: Was it ever Dave sending these, or was it you all along?

D: Him til today.

So there you go, folks. My sister has been revealed to be a manipulating baby-instigator as well. Dave, I’m sorry, I thought you were the only one fighting dirty. But it turns out you have corrupted Erica via being married to her, turning my own flesh and blood against me. I knew there was going to be trouble the moment that whippersnapper was born. I was completely justified in the suspicion you can see written all over my 2-year-old face.

You just wait Dave and Erica, because I have plans. Plans to, um . . . to um . . .

I mean, aren’t babies just the cutest thing? And aren’t young families just precious??

. . . but let’s stay focused here people.

I’d also like to mention that after reading my Blokus post in which I confessed to being a competitive game-player, Erica told me that Dave has decided to challenge me to all sorts of board and card games and take me down. Dave, this blog was not designed to give you the keys to my demise. But I am realizing that I may have unwittingly given them to you anyway. Thinking I was simply sharing my heart, I was actually revealing my Achilles heel to a man who apparently must win at everything, be it baby-instigating wars or game-playing tournaments. I’m starting to be afraid. Very afraid. Erica, who did you marry? And why must he win all the time?? I should have known he was a punk the minute this picture crossed my email account:

If Dave beats me at Dutch Blitz, I will be forced to retreat to a hermit’s cave and suck on my toes for the next 5 years. And lemme tell you, my husband wouldn’t appreciate that one bit, and would shortly become malnourished based on his exclusive diet of ham sandwiches, apples, and carrots. Do you want to be responsible for that, Dave? Huh?

OK (breathing slowly). Let’s make peace, Dave.

But I will completely smash you at Dutch Blitz.