The Groupchat: For the Wookie

Of late, the boys have started this group message thread to whittle away the hours while pretending to work and yet still reap the benefits of a real paycheck.  Like all the best Seinfield, the thread is mostly about nothing: BSing each other and counting down the minutes until happy hour.  Since my phone has sold its digital soul to the ‘robot devil’ (i.e. it broke), I could not read these messages or in truth comment on them.  Luckily, last Easter I lost my cellphone down a storm-drain while stomping on it with my right heel.  It will not be missed.  My subsequent purchase of an iPhone opened a doorway to a whole new world of texting and communication.  Moreover, I can now chat with my brothers while they work during these June days and I contemplate my next blog post in my PJs at home.  Teaching does have its merits.

The following conversation delved into how my presence has affected the Groupchat (as they dub it) for better or for worse.  If you, dear reader, find these conversations interesting, I might try to post a few more now and then.

Dialogue_paul
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Lizard-men Arise!

I refuse to give in to the Twitter-machine.  To me, the humorous, insightful, and sometimes insipid mini-comments that Twitter distributes to the world best serves . . . well, interesting people.  I mean, if you’re going to follow the day-to-day goings-on of anyone, only scientists (“Hey I cured cancer!”), entertainers  (“Hey, I have spoilers!”), or vain-glorious reality stars (“Hey, I have chemistry!”) could truly benefit.  Lifestyles of the poor and unemployed simply cannot compete.  Unless of course, they don’t feel particularly encumbered by ‘truth’ and ‘honesty.’  Then it’s a different story . . .

Left to my own devices while shopping with Mom and Katie, I occasionally shoot texts to my sister while stalking through the mall, watching people and staring into stores.  In this post-Borders and -Waldenbooks dystopia, I am left to buying a fruit shakes and browsing the gadgets in Brookstone — one of the last monuments to disposable income, where even a tabletop billiards table seems impossible to live without.

The texts simultaneously offer a creative output for my energies, while annoying my little sister who’s eager to hear from Leo, her boyfriend, about dinner: Continue reading

The rumors concerning our sanity have been greatly exaggerated.

Coffee cup

The motivation behind all scientific discovery begins here . . .

October found me eager and excited, brimming with confidence and creativity for my work . . . at least during weekends. However, Monday mornings broke with the din of a funeral march, disturbing those few early morning dreams and ushering me upstairs upon the family couch while reruns of Law and Order painted visions of murder and desperation before sleep-filled eyes.  Waiting to leave the house proved the most trying, as my imagination, planting visions of screaming children and growling soccer moms, tried its damnedest to wrack my body with anxiety, upset my stomach and basically ruin the whole of my week.

Thankfully, I had Dunkin Donuts and their wonderful battalion of iced coffees to attack my flagging spirit and sleep deprivation.  Truly, the smell alone had a soothing effect; the extra-large galleon-sized container of liquid energy, a balm to my worries.  My imagination, drowning in legal stimulants, learned to behave, and I drove to school, happily contemplating Thanksgiving and Christmas break, only three months away.

The fallout from the field trip befell us the following Monday when Dr. T took us in the conference room for lunch. Slowly Ms. P spilled the story, downplaying our absence at the deli (a little) and deleting the abusive pot-smoker entirely (to be fair, the kids were not involved at all). Continue reading

Lenten Woes

Oh, No Meat Fridays, how I have missed thee.  Another year, another forgotten Lenten promise.  Frankly, the exact date of my betrayal, my omissive gluttony, that first bite out of a ham sandwich followed by several days worth of Catholic guilt is something of a sport in the Murphey clan.  Sean has even taken out a pool on when I will stray (having already claimed week 3 and 5 for himself).

Lego Turkey DinnerUnlike New Year’s Resolution, Lenten appeals carry greater weight for me.  I mean if you happen to screw up, you may be visited with plague and lightning, fire and brimstone, Rosie O’Donnell and another season of the Bachelor — Heaven preserve us.   Father Time, the patron saint of New Year’ Resolutions is far less coercive.   He acts as more of a symbol anyway, one  who has been screwin’ with me for years, ever since I learned about movie ratings and the penalties for underage drinking. Continue reading