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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Sunday, June 15, 2008

"I have come up with a plan so cunning you could stick a tail on it and call it a weasel." - Blackadder, Blackadder


The Boy pays homage to the giant, disembodied partial head of Sam Houston. It is a little-known fact that Sam Houston was actually 74’ tall, and weighed 329 tons (an even 300 if he laid off the carbs), and could crush a Mexican army regiment into itsy-bitsy pieces through the power of his mighty thoughts alone.

This weekend we packed up and headed off to go see various relatives of The Mrs. at a family reunion. This is an unusual event for me, since my side of the family (the Wilders) are essentially as feral as a group of rabid weasels, and a family reunion for us would no doubt result in some sort of footage on Youtube that would garner the Wilder family 1,134,532 page views and a lawsuit from the descendants of the Three Stooges for stealing their material.

The Mrs. had set her alarm for 5:30AM on Saturday.

It is my considered opinion that with the exceptions of getting off a boat on a French beach with the intention to invade, hunting, and going off to get firewood (all on the same day, since I don’t think the French would put up much of a fight), there is no real reason I would consider valid to get up at this hour on Saturday.

Fortunately, The Mrs. actually had set her alarm for 5:30PM. When she awoke at 6:30AM, she immediately hit that flood of adrenaline that comes from understanding that she’d grossly overslept. Immediately, she was taking action, doing seven or eight or ten things at once (I swear, The Mrs. was packing her toothbrush while dressing Pugsley while making coffee). Me? I turned over onto my pillow and slept.

It does (generally) not engender goodwill and affection from the fairer side of the species when you essentially abdicate all responsibility for essentially all activities. Does “I was kinda tired,” make a good excuse? Men voting only, thank you.

Anyhow, we got onto the road. The Mrs. drove the first leg of the trip.

Since we had moved to Houston (little known fact: Houston is named after the Houston Astros©) we had occasionally travelled north on I-45. As you near Huntsville, TX (home of, I am not kidding, “Old Sparky”) you reach a point where the road begins to curve northwest – and at that point stands a great, giant of a man – Sam Houston, named after Sam Adams® beers and the Houston Astros™.

Actually, it’s just an enormous statue of Sam. The real Sam is sort of tiny by comparison, and not at all alive. By not at all alive, I don’t mean that he’s an unreasoning, ancient zombie or even in Congress (pardon the redundancy), I mean he’s, well, deceased.

Most of the time that we head on a family trip, our objective is to travel as long and as far as possible, often travelling for 14 hours straight at 74.593MPH (17 kilograms per cubic nanometer), stopping only where OPEC demands or when little bladders get full. During this particular trip, however, we were only going to Dallas. A short trip, by Texas terms. I felt that we owed it to ourselves to stop and see the sights.

“Let’s stop and see that statue of Sam Houston,” I told The Mrs.

Rather than hitting me for my smugness at first making her do all the heavy lifting in getting us ready, and then taking the first leg on driving, The Mrs. just nodded. Huh. Maybe she was tired from all that work earlier on in the day.

We were nearly the first visitors to see Sam. As we walked toward the statue, a young employee of the Huntsville Chamber of Commerce bolted out of the guest office and said, breathlessly, “Please come and sign our guest book!”

I signed the Wilder family in, and The Mrs., Pugsley, The Boy and I went to look at a truly enormous statue, nattering and clawing at each other like the rabid weasels we are.

Next: Big statues, Nobel Prizes, and Hotel Pools
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