"Mom, mom, mom, mom, mom, mom!" Like the rapid fire staccato of a machine gun, #2 Son skidded to a stop next to me, calling for me with the intensity of a cat demanding its dinner. If you have ever had a cat, absolutely determined to be fed right this minute, you know how intense that really is.
"Look at this mom, look!" Looking down at me, he held aloft, for my inspection, one of his many sporting goods catalogs. He has never met a sporting goods catalog he didn't like.
"When I save up enough money, which one is better for me to get? A real wildebeest skin pelt, a genuine SWAT jacket, or a stuffed rattlesnake?"
What, I inquired, would you do with any of these things?
"Well," he answered, "the wildebeest skin would go on my bed. I've always wanted to wrap up in a real animal hide when I sleep. The SWAT jacket I could use when we play paintball and for when I ride around the neighborhood at night watching for trouble. You know Miss Dee asked me to keep an eye out because I know all the bad things that go down and can tell the Civic Association when someone is up to something. As for the stuffed rattlesnake," here his grin grew evil indeed, "I would use it to scare the piss out of dad!"
Well, at least he was being honest.
Who in the world wants, and who is crazy enough to produce, stuffed rattlesnakes? I asked.
"Oh, don't worry, they take out the venom sacs and put rubber inside the fangs, so even if there is dried venom in there, it won't hurt you if you scratch yourself on the fang. Besides, I know what to do if you get bit, and I know what to tell the ER people to mix for anti-venom."
Great, now he also thinks he is Marcus Welby, M.D., or maybe, for this generation, Dr. House.
Son, you save up, and then decide, I finally answered. After all, he spends it almost the minute he earns it, unless he gives me the money to keep for him, so it should take a little while.
Meanwhile, what he got paid most recently is going for marshmallows. The pyromaniac in him is out in full force, as the weather is good bonfire and roasting weather.
Birth of Tiamat -- Ancient Babylonian Calendar (mother of gods, goddess of primeval chaos)
Constitution Day -- Dominican Republic; Tajikistan; Tatarstan
Green March -- Morocco
Gustavus Adolphus Day -- Sweden
Finnish Swedish Heritage Day -- Finland
Halfway Point of Autumn
International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict
Marooned Without A Compass Day
National Nachos Day
Peanut Butter Lovers' Day
Potting Shed Investitures (garden fairies) -- Fairy Calendar
St. Illtyd's Day (Abbot, cousin of King Arthur)
St. Leonard's Day (patron of prisoners, blacksmiths, porters, horses, locksmiths, coal miners, greengrocers; against robbery)
St. Paul of Constantinople's Day (Eastern)
Vira Nirvana -- Jain
Pat Tillman, 1976
Rebecca Romijn, 1972
Ethan Hawke, 1970
Maria Shriver, 1955
Glenn Frey, 1948
Sally Field, 1946
Mike Nichols, 1931
Walter Perry Johnson, 1887
James Naismith, 1861
Ignace Paderewski, 1860
John Philip Sousa, 1854
Adolphe Sax, 1814 (yes, the musician who invented the Saxophone)
Today in History:
Shipwrecked Spanish conquistador Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca becomes the first known European to set foot in Texas, 1528
Spain grants independence to the Dominican Republic, 1844
Scenes of Clerical Life, the first work of fiction by the author later known as George Eliot, is submitted for publication, 1856
Canada celebrates its first official, national Thanksgiving Day, 1879
Mohandas Gandhi is arrested while leading a march of Indian miners in South Africa, 1913
Colonel Jacob Schick patents the first electric razor, 1928
Edwin Armstrong presents his paper "A Method of Reducing Disturbances in Radio Signaling by a System of Frequency Modulation" to the New York section of the Institute of Radio Engineers (hello, FM radio!), 1935
Parker Brothers acquires the forerunner patents for MONOPOLY from Elizabeth Magie, 1935
Plutonium is first produced at the Hanford Atomic Facility, 1944
The United Nations General Assembly passes a resolution condemning South Africa's racist apartheid policies and calls for all UN member states to cease military and economic relations with the nation, 1962
Cuba and the United States formally agree to begin an airlift for Cubans who want to go to the United States, 1965
Green March begins: 300,000 unarmed Moroccans converge on the southern city of Tarfaya and wait for a signal from King Hassan II of Morocco to cross into Western Sahara, 1975
Australians vote to keep the Head of the Commonwealth as their head of state in the Australian republic referendum, 1999
Back in the day
36 minutes ago