, , , , , ,

Yep, that's us! Quite a crew, right?

“Wait…is this…am I in the right place?”
Yes loyal rea…

Jim!  Jim where are you?!”

I’m right he…

Where am I?  I’m so scared, I don’t kno…”

Pull yourself together loyal reader!  It’s me, Jim.  I know things look a little different from the last time I tricked begged guilted invited you to stop over but rest assured, you will still find the same poorly written, mildly humorous slop you’ve come to accept tolerate love from me here.  If I haven’t convinced you that you’re in the right place, the above run-on sentence should have been all the proof you needed.

I’m sure you assumed my bold statements about re-vamping the blog were just empty promises.  After all, I’ve made bold statements before, only to sheepishly arrive back here exhausted from all my backpedaling.  But this time I was serious and I can tell from the look of disorientation on your face that you were not expecting it.  It’s ok, I hold no ill will towards you for that.  I’ve been told I am great at doing things 87% of the way, so the odds of me following through on this were likely in your favor.

Now that you’ve had nearly 200 words to get comfortable in this new space, I invite you to take a look around and make yourself at home; after you finish reading this post of course.  You’ll find some differences here and there; I’ve added some features and removed others that seemed unnecessary with the new direction of the blog.  It’s still under construction so bear with me.  I welcome your opinion as always with the caveat that any negative feedback will be immediately dismissed.

But the new layout is only part of the reason I’m here today.  The other, much more entertaining reason is to provide you with a quick recap of our recent family vacation.  I intended to regale you with the most memorable moment of the week, but deciding upon just one was like trying to pick the funniest track from an album full of amusing anecdotes.  So I’ve chosen, instead, to provide you with the results of my predictions that I made before the trip of the 10 things I guaranteed would happenLets get started!

Me and my favorite 3 people in the World!

#10: I will get sunburned.  In my efforts to prove this prediction wrong, I over applied with suntan lotion this year, leaving my skin permanently greasy.  As expected, I did not really tan.  I was, however, successful in deflecting the sun’s rays away from anyone in a 10 square foot radius of me thanks to the SPF 3,000 I applied 26 times a day.  Not getting sunburned is a victory in my book, and I believe that having the sun reflect off of me like a mirror for the next several months is a small price to pay.

#9: I will dominate the putt-putt circuit.  I stand before you, loyal readers, humbled by the defeat I suffered at the hands of my own mother this year.  We only managed one round of mini golf over the course of the week, so I wasn’t able to rebound from the loss and now have to mull over my fall from grace for an entire year.  I wasn’t on my game that night, I can honestly say that.  But I have to hand it to my Mom for playing lights out and taking home the crown. 

#8: It will take no less than 5 1/2 hours to get to Ocean City: I got one right!  As expected, our marathon trip began around 10:30am in Baltimore and ended when we pulled into the driveway in Ocean City shortly after 4pm.  I can attribute nearly two hours to a lunch stop we made at a Bob Evans just outside of Easton, MD.  Apparently the staff members at this fine establishment are unfamiliar with concepts such as “time” and “service”, or at least that is the only explanation I can come up with for a two-hour lunch.  Anyway, my prediction came to fruition and our streak of unnecessarily long car rides continues!

#7: Someone is going to have a meltdown.  Meltdown is a strong word.  There were some timeouts issued, some voices raised at children, and some food thrown from plates.  The closest thing to a meltdown came when our entire clan attempted to go out to dinner one too many times and the Jakester rebelled against us.  I think a 2/3 majority would vote that night as a meltdown so we’ll say “yes” to this prediction.

#6: We will drive around for an hour looking for a new place to eat, only to wind up at the same place we go every year.  I almost nailed this one!  As expected, talk slowly surfaced about a new restaurant we had never patronized before.  We made a plan to venture to this new locale, but our timing coincided with every other occupant of Ocean City and the wait time was far too long.  Seeing as it had taken us the better part of that day to coordinate this plan, it seemed unlikely that we would be able to come up with a brand new one prior to midnight.  So we climbed in our cars and headed to our old stomping ground.  You guessed it…The Dough Roller!  My only mistake with the prediction was the time alloted for driving.  I guess I forgot that The Roller is a mere 3 blocks from our house.  Oh well.

They may look sweet, but these kids know how to party!

#5: We will get drunk.  This one was a slam dunk!  I basically put it in here just to make sure I got at least one prediction right.  I’m not naming names here, you know who you are, but there was quite a bit of alcohol consumed on this trip and we’ll leave it at that.

#4: A theme song will be chosen for this vacation.  As has become tradition over the past several years, we listened to a lot of music during our trip.  We played some games with our iPods and tried to best each other with obscure songs or funny lyrics.  In the end, it is hard to pinpoint one song that dominated the week like others in the past.  But after a last-minute download of a music video from Saturday Night Live and the subsequent uncontrollable laughter that followed its viewing, I have to go with “3-Way: The Golden Rule” by The Lonely Island with help from Justin Timberlake and Lady Gaga.  I’m not posting the video here since this is a family blog (and it’s a bit risqué), but here’s the link if you care to check it out…and I think you do!  Note: After listening to the song, part of the title of this post should make more sense to you.

"Two Jack Trippers and a Chrissy...the new Three's Company."

#3: The words “Adirondack Chairs” will be said no less than 2,731 times.  Obviously I was going for comedic value with this exaggeration, though I would not have been completely surprised if we hit that number.  The truth is, I attempted to keep track but stopped counting after 46.  It’s not that I can’t count higher than 46, I mean my personal best is well over 200, I just figured the point was made.  The Adirondack chairs were popular and were talked about regularly, case closed.  You can put this one in the win column!

#2: Stories of past vacations will be told, and told, and told some more.  Another gimme that made the list just to pad my stats.  As may be the case with your family as well, when we get together, stories are always shared.  The setting rarely matters.  Whether it’s on vacation or just hanging out at someone’s house for the day, it is odd for a get together to pass by without a memory or recollection to surface.  There was plenty of talk of vacations gone by this year, but also excitement and anticipation of vacations to come.  As our family continues to grow, there will be more and more stories to share and I look forward to that.

#1: Spend $87 on arcade games, collect 12,417 tickets, and trade them in for a pencil, a star-shaped eraser, and a matchbox car.  This one was up in the air because I wasn’t sure if the kids were old enough to be into the arcade yet.  As it turns out, we never even made it to an arcade, though we did spend an evening down on the boardwalk watching the kids enjoy some amusement park rides.  Izzy was determined to get on every ride in the park and we were happy to see that she was excited rather than scared.  We had to draw the line though when she asked to ride a contraption that resembled the cage that bingo balls roll around in attached to what I can only describe as a swinging pendulum of death.  She was disappointed, but quickly distracted by a bright blue stuffed animal. 

Me and my buddy, the Jakester!

All in all, my guarantees may have fallen a bit flat but a good time was had by all and that’s what really matters.  Finally, I’m sure you are curious as to the second half of this post’s title.  Many years ago, when I just a freshman or sophomore in high school, I noticed that new slang words or phrases seemed to be popping up almost every day.  The problem was, I found myself constantly a step or two behind the crowd, using these phrases just after their popularity ran its course.  My Aunts and I decided during our annual vacation together, that we should come up with our own slang word and try to make it popular.  After much debate, the word we came up with was “Gnude”, pronounced “nude” but with a silent “G”. 

We planned to unleash Gnude on the world as the new “cool” or “sweet”.  I was tasked with spreading the slang through the high school crowd as teenagers are typically the epicenter for new jargon.  Unfortunately, I overestimated my popularity and my efforts ran cold.  Now, these many years later, we’ve decided to give it another shot.  I’m older now and no longer a part of the teenage crowd, but I feel my popularity is at an all time high since my blog is followed by easily 6 or 7 people.  So I’m tasking you, my loyal readers, with spreading the word.  I hope to walk down the street someday and hear a passer by say, “Wow, what a gnude car you have!”  Let’s make it happen people!

A final note regarding the new look blog.  As promised, a new name will be revealed shortly, most likely the beginning of next week.  I just didn’t want to throw too much at you at once!