Tuesday, November 01, 2005

The Solar-Powered Chili Piss Test

True to character, my Nutter-In-Law lives on the Palo Alto street where Ken Kesey and his chums beat a piano to death in an early chapter of Tom Wolfe's The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test.

Forty years later, the neighborhood is full of old hippies, Stanford and NASA researchers who wear slip-on shoes because they'd forget to tie their own laces otherwise and, call me Scooter, an FBI executive. But he's not undercover; unless you ask the hippies maybe. It's a crew to rival the Merry Pranksters in its own way, except you better believe no one is going to be wrapped in an american flag 'round there. Except perhaps the FBI guy, but even he probably voted for Nader.

Well, these people still love to throw street parties, although the Hell's Angels or even the otherwise unavoidable Wavy Gravy never show up anymore. And they do one every Halloween. This year, as usual, there was the classic brew of smoking apple juice mixed with dry ice along with a pot-luck spread of Mexican-themed classics and the party host's special Chili. It never crossed my mind that the juice might be spiked with vodka, or a hallucinogen, or other, but I'm telling you: that chili tasted like piss.

Now, I know these people. I've listened to my mother-in-law, the neighborhood therapist, expound on their bickering, cat-fights, fights over each others cats, and each others lawns and kids and SUVs that take up the whole damn street. I've read snitty three-page notes left by neighbors irreparably insulted over borrowed pizza stones. And that chili smelled like piss, it tasted like piss (please don't ask how I know how piss tastes) and I wouldn't put it past these crazy vindictive Peyton-Place-meets-Amercian Beauty people for one second to piss in a pot of community chili out of pure spite.

I didn't eat it, and of course I didn't give it to Cedra. I did watch out of the corner of my eye as Michael ate his, but I didn't say anything because I'm not really talking to him these days. He ate a little, but not much. He didn't mention piss. Maybe I was just imagining the whole thing. But still, I've felt inexplicably guilty for not warning him. It says a little something about marriage when you occasionally think about dipping someone's toothbrush in the toilet, don't actually do it but do leave the toilet lid up on the off-chance that your 18 month old might do it for you, then still feel guilty for not telling him that his chili might be spiked with piss.

I wish to god I had pictures of Cedra in her Octopus Diva costume (can you believe that every kid in my MIL's neighborhood knew all the lyrics to "Octopus's Garden"?) but we forgot the digital camera and have to wait for my MIL's boyfriend to email us some. In the meanwhile, here's a picture of her in her pre-costume get-up. I love this outfit:



At 8:22 AM, Blogger Apartment Number One said...

Great outfit. Love the shoes too. Sabra already demonstrates more fashion sense than I'll ever have.

At 2:22 PM, Blogger Alisyn said...

Oh, the embroidery!
The shoes! (Who makes the shoes?!)
That little bob to top everything off!

So, so, so cute. What a little dumpling.

At 9:14 PM, Anonymous bitemycookie said...

i love the outfit too. and the accessory owl. remind me not to join at your nutter in laws (i'm ripping that off) for dinner. hysterical.

At 8:44 AM, Blogger llamaschool said...

Thanks, all. I just want to squeeze this girl every minute.

Alisyn, the whole thing including the shoes is from and they will ship to the US. There's a Union Jack at the top of the site that will switch it to english.

Shamefully, I must admit that my MIL funded the shoes and my huz picked them out.

At 3:48 PM, Anonymous susanne said...

so, so adorable! i'm a big fan of dpam and i've ordered more than a few cute dresses/jackets/pants for Violette from their fabulous and surprisingly inexpensive collection, although lately the exchange rate hasn't been that great. but that's what MILs are for, right?!

At 10:04 AM, Blogger Dutch said...

the merry pranksters must really be losing steam if the best prank they can pull is pissin' in the chili.

At 3:07 PM, Blogger llamaschool said...

Thanks, Susanne. I still haven't figured out how to post links in comments.


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