QOTW – 2009/09/07

And the Question of the Week is… what funny or crazy experience do you remember from a family gathering or vacation?

My answer is after the cut…

When my grandparents lived in Merritt Island, they had a pool. Now… many of you know about our New Years Eve party; it used to be that there was a competition to be the first one in the pool in the New Year. I seem to recall that most of these competitions began with Bourbon, and they usually wound up being between Uncle Joe and our friend from Toronto, Mike. Being from Canada, Mike had an unfair advantage in that cold to us wasn’t so much cold to him!

10 comments

  1. One New Year’s Eve in Tarrytown, my brother (Lore’s father) Jay and I were doing some amateur stop-action photography with the pool table downstairs. It was a drunken kind of fun, making the cue ball do impossible things. After one sequence, Lore’s mother Alice came down, her hand covered with green gunk from smooshing together guacamole. Her hand slowly descended from out of frame and picked up the ball.

    We were easily amused back then. When the movie came back from processing and we watched the spectacle of the Ghoulish Hand From Nowhere, Jay and Alice and I lost it completely! It was whole minutes before we had recovered enough to get up off the floor and replenish our beers,

    Unca Joe

  2. My dad’s family has a week-long reunion every other year and there’s an unofficial tradition of coming up with at least one silly story to remind us of each reunion. Even my husband has been included in this tradition- like the time we were checking out of our condos and as we emptied the fridge and cabinets of leftover food and condiments, Eric decided to dump half a box of instant mashed potatoes down the drain and run hot water into it. It got so clogged up that we thought we were going to have to get everyone to come over and bring a fork to help us eat our way out of the clog! So now we kid Eric about making his special recipe -“Disposal Mashed Taters”! It goes great with my Dad’s “Deep Fried Dill Pickles” and Uncle Emmett’s “Baked Bulletts”, I mean “Baked Beans”. 🙂

  3. Joe, that was a good one. I do remember. And the guacamole was pretty tasty, too.
    A somewhat crazy vacation type trip, well, more like insane, was our trip to a worldcon in SanFrancisco. Gay can tell us – ’68? 67? Seven fans in a VW microbus, driving and driving, stopping every few nights at campgrounds. The trash bucket became known as the starving children department. It made sense at the time and the name stuck. Oh, and singing ‘Next Thanksgiving’ at the top of our lungs while driving through redneck towns – it’s a wonder we made it alive. I kept the old movie camera running quite a bit to document it all. I remember Ron Bounds drinking a Coors beer by holding the can with his sword stuck through it. It was so much fun we tried it again a few years later in the Ford van going to the Worldcon in LA. But it wasn’t quite the same as in the VW bus.
    I sure wish you could find those old movies. The evil stepmonster probably threw them all out.

  4. It was 1968, Alice, and that was a wonderful trip. Remember the 1967 WorldCon in NY, where we all dressed up in sweatshirts and fishnet stockings and went to the masquerade as the invaders? The Invaders was a new TV show where you could tell someone was an alien if their little finger stuck out straight. Lorena’s grandmother, also Lorena, was part of the group, too. Lore, there’s a photo around someplace of that masquerade. Aunt Gay

  5. Yes, I remember that, too. We did invade fandom, for sure.
    Hey, another couple of funny memories of the VW trip – Ron Wolz in describing the Grand Canyon as looking like the cat played with his oatmeal; Ray Ridenour, not having a camera, wanting us to wait while he drew pictures of any scenic overlook we stopped at.

    • Is this the Alice I remember who showed me how to make compost indoors in a very large black plastic bag?
      We used to stand around in your kitchen in Baltimore discussing many things while the others were trying to become great SF writers in other rooms of your house. And there was the cooking and eating of artichokes? You and Jay were wonderful kind hosts.
      If I’ve got the correct Alice, then you might remember me as Ted’s wife #2, before I gafiated for 30 years. And our daughter Kit grew up in Baltimore/VA fandom. Here’s hoping I got the right person.

  6. I remember on particular vacation that started out with the most hellish travel possible, followed up by everyone irritating me so much that I considered drowning myself in a lake.

    Good times!

  7. Our family doesn’t gather much – it’s better for everyone’s mental health to keep it that way. The family I gather is the family I’ve collected, like the HaldeClan 🙂

    But, here’s one about my “birth family”. This happened when I was probably in my early teens. Much of my father’s side of the family gathered at his oldest brother’s hotel in North Carolina, which had a pool. All the kids and a few of the adults went in the pool to cool off. I didn’t know how to swim, but didn’t want to be the dork outside the pool not having fun. I stayed in the shallow end, but slipped and went sliding off into the deep end. My aunt had to rescue me. Everyone made sure I was okay, and then my father said he wanted me back in the water so I wouldn’t be afraid of it. That’s my Dad – he did mean well, even if he sounds mean.

  8. Robin Postal White
    November 14th, 2009 at 7:47 am · Reply
    Is this the Alice I remember who showed me how to make compost indoors in a very large black plastic bag?
    We used to stand around in your kitchen in Baltimore discussing many things while the others were trying to become great SF writers in other rooms of your house. And there was the cooking and eating of artichokes? You and Jay were wonderful kind hosts.
    If I’ve got the correct Alice, then you might remember me as Ted’s wife #2, before I gafiated for 30 years. And our daughter Kit grew up in Baltimore/VA fandom. Here’s hoping I got the right person

    Robin, It is I, guilty as charged. While I don’t recall the ‘compost in a bag’ method, I do remember you taught me how to make a health drink you called ‘glop’, with lecithin granuales, raw eggs, wheat germ, grape juice concentrate and some other stuff. I’ll send you a message with more about where I’ve been since 1972. How nice to hear from you!

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