Wilder by Far

A look at life with the Wilder family. Updated most weekends and some vacation days. You can contact me at movingnorth@gmail.com..

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Wednesday, April 12, 2006

"Here we see the wreckage of the great snowball wars of 1955." - Tom Servo, MST3K

You can see turns 3 and 4 of the Wilder 500 in the background behind the lean, mean, snowmachine. The Boy was doing pit stop duty when we took this one.

The warm, sunny days had been spoiling me. It had to turn, and it did. Yesterday it snowed 4”-6” of fresh, powdery snow. The front deck, which had actually been showing wood as a surface rather than packed icy snow for the first time since November, was once again inundated with snow.

I got home, and was confronted with a wonderful sight. The Boy was clad in khakis, a white button down shirt, and a tie. After kissing The Mrs. hello, she noted, “The Boy has a question for you.”

The Boy: “Can we get the snowmachine out?”

These past few days it’s been warmer than the way that Tom Cruise felt about Mimi Rodgers, Nicole Kidman, Penelope Cruz, Katie Holmes, himself, so I don’t think that we have too many days left that we can pull the machine out. It has been known to snow in May in Fairbanks, (well, and every other month but July), but this might be the last chance to really cut loose. Since it’s a snowmachine and not a gravelmachine, I decided The Boy was right. Time to get going. Besides, how do you say “no” to a little tiny man wearing a tie?

The Mrs. had to leave, so that removed the option of going far from the house since The New Boy was happily asleep in there, dreaming of Yoda or whatever a ten-month-old dreams of. Carpet? Small plastic squeaky things? Oh, wait. Ours dreams of food, which would explain the gnaw marks on his crib slats.

Anyway, The Mrs. left, and The Boy and I jumped on the machine and headed . . . around the front yard. I tried going into the backyard, but the partially melted and consolidating three feet of snow got me stuck in the first turn. There are very few things less fun than getting a snowmachine unstuck in the presence of a five-year-old. “Why are we stuck? What are you doing? Is it broken? Why can’t we go?”

All the questions combined with the inability to curse great gaping gobs of profanity like the situation called for leads to a medical condition technically known as “frustratus fatherus,” the only known cures for which are beer or getting the snowmachine unstuck. A few million questions later, and we were back on the relatively well-packed snow in the front yard, and my beer could remain untouched until the weekend.

That led to a conundrum. The front yard, while larger than some entire subdivisions in California, allowed us only to get up a little bit of speed before I had to slam on the brakes and make a sliding turn and go the other way. As we did successive ovals, I realized how truly bored that NASCAR drivers have to be, “Hmm, this turn looks familiar. Like it did the last 300 times I made it.”

But, as luck would have it, we wore ruts in the snow. I began to increase speed. A few leftover hills of snow, slammed successively by the snowmachine began to form into respectable jumps, and the more we hit them, the steeper and better they became. Soon, on the backhand straightaway, the entire snowmachine was airborne. That will make a five-year-old squeal, as well as make his helmet impact yours with all the force of Russell Crowe’s rage.

After a bit, it was time to put the snowmachine away. The Boy complained bitterly as I went inside to do my taxes (I try to start them at least a day before they’re due).

“Play with me.”

I got inside and looked out the window at him trying to ride his bike in the snow. Okay. Forget the taxes for now. I figure if I mess something up, the IRS will send me a nice letter asking me gently to refigure them when I have time, right?

The Boy, on his way to learning things that will get him in trouble, come kindergarten. The Mrs. indicates that the penalty for snowballs in school is akin to a felony, since, you know, so many kindergarteners have been decapitated by snowballs.

Do taxes, or hit The Boy with a broadside of snowballs that would make a pirate captain go “Yaaaargh”?

Okay, that’s math that’s easier than a 1040.


Blogger shawnkielty said...

John -- it's 93 effing degrees here. I would love to play in the snow.

That is a great post. How fun.

11:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The last time I saw snow, it was the version with Johnny Depp which, I'll wager, is a lot less enjoyable than you and The Boy.

Yeah, it's hot here in Florida, too. So hot, in fact, that the snowbirds have begun their migration back North.

Hurricane season begins June 1st; dates in the calendar are closer than they appear.

5:45 AM  
Blogger The Mayor said...

You really pelted him right in the face, didn't you? ;^)

6:20 AM  
Blogger Woofwoof said...

What about the dogs? You can't talk about snow without mentioning the dogs.

8:46 PM  
Blogger shawnkielty said...

I really shouldn't mention the "winter visitors," but since things are about to hit 100 here -- I think that's it's going be a lot safer to drive a snowmobile, er ... golf cart, I mean bike, any Satuurday now.

9:59 PM  
Blogger John said...

Down to a crisp 10 tonight. Wonderful, clear sky. We're getting close, though, to the point where we can't see stars because it never gets dark enough (dusky tonight at 10:45). You gotta get up here. Come in winter. Hotels are cheap, but bring the warm clothes.

Much less. I always thought that Johnny Depp would be sort of smelly to hang around with. Think he bathes much? You gotta love the snowbirds moving out . . .

Maybe we'll be done with snowfall by the time your hurricanes kick off . . . (and not the Miami ones).

Kicked his tiny little tie-wearing butt. I could take on, oh, say fifty or a hundred five-year-olds in a snowball fight. If it got too much for me, I could just throw 'em.

Our husky loves to run in the snow, sticking her snout (not muzzle, snout) in the powdery fluff. She was away on vacation. Besides, she can run nearly as fast as the snowmachine. I don't take kindly to competition.

Har! "winter visitors" sounds so much like "in a family way" or some other term for things that are vaguely distastful, yet necessary. Hope you like driving 35MPH in the 70MPH lane . . .

10:48 PM  
Blogger Jill Homer said...

Look at that smile shining beneath a snow-soaked robber mask. That kid's got it made.

11:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was poking around your blog and noticed the following in the scoresheet below your posting: This website appears to be in violation of the British Disability Discrimination Act (more detail).

I hate to hear you are discriminating against the British, did you fail to take some tourists on a real life dog sled ride or something? Didn't we politely ask them to leave the states prior to Alaska joining the union? Is the beef with you? Are you not drinking any Boddingtons or Speckled Hen (could you start and clear this mess up)? I think as a loyal subscriber to the Wilder version of the Great White North, it might be time to come clean!!!


6:55 AM  
Blogger John said...

there was giggling and laugher to beat the band. We threw enough snowballs at ourselves and trees to clear off the hot tub, and a big chunk of the deck. And it didn't even seem much like work.

As you well know, there is a great and now not so secret, (thanks to you!) cabal that exists only to discriminate against the British online. This is payback for burning The White House, and also payback for Masterpiece Theatre. And the Spice Girls.

9:36 AM  

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