Domestic Climbing Easy, Spelunking Not So Much


Im no stranger to stairs, hey who is? When I saw the grand-daddy of them all at Aunt Tricias, I knew I had to conquer it, even if for no reason other than because it was there.

Oh man, this ain`t easy.
Oh man, this ain`t easy.

I wasn’t hungry or uncomfy, didn’t want to be held or changed, yet something had me in a most irritable mood. Wasn’t something I ate, or just a bad day either. It was a full on crisis, and yet, no one around me could acknowledge it. Why?

My handlers and editorial staff all suggested I was ‘just tired,” but that only made things worse. Come on now, how could that be right? It was about my bedtime and I did have an early nap, but things just didn’t add up to me buying it.

Man, if I could just remember what it was, maybe I could convince them I’m not making this up. Experts* concur it must be amnesia. Possibly I had learned something shocking or suffered some terrible accident leaving me with no lingering side effects except the briefest of memory loss. Memory loss of the trauma itself. In either scenario my case is pretty water-tight.

Though it was an isolated experience, I consulted with my much older brother. He’s four. He told me that I can unfortunately look forward to many more such nights. What a tiral we face as lesser people**.

* Daytime television soap critics.
** By height and weight, anyhow.

Teething a Real Pain in the Kisser

I should have known when I didn’t find people teeth for sale on eBay that this process could be tricky. Now I’ve changed my mind and as it it turns out there’s no return policy.

Oh it`s something uncomfy alright.
Oh it`s something uncomfy alright.

These so-called teeth are starting to make their appearance and it’s the most baddest thing I’ve gone through since mom kicked me out of my old womb. In a “no pain, no gain” world I must be gaining a LOT of toothies, I’ll tell you what.

My command of simile is a metaphorical disaster, so that won’t help me explain it. Hurts like the wind? Hurts like a sly fox? As hurty as a bee? I do not zinc zat means what you zinc it means. I know, I’m too young for that sort of literary fanciness so I’ll jest tell you how it feels. Jest or just? No, I think it’s jest.

Ever had a garage band for neighbors? They whale noon and night and just when you think they’re done for the day it’s “second verse, same as the first”… Except it’s all Louie Louie… and it’s the heaviest of metal… and the drummer’s got super volume but no rhythm. Really painful, that’s what I’m trying to tell you.

If this is what people go through to get teeth, I can see why they don’t readily sell them, not even to the highest bidder. It feels like I’m growing like at least two or three. That can’t be right, can it? It seems like too many. I guess if it was easy, everyone would be doing it.

With all this pain, I understand why my great-grandparents don’t have any. I don’t blame them, teeth aren’t any fun at all. Of course, sadly, I’m too far into it to change my mind and cancel my order. Should have bought it with PayPal, I guess.

November 3rd, vote “no” on teething. You don’t really need them to enjoy savory steak and corn and if you don’t believe it you can just ask me or my good friends at the Gerber Mush Corporation… Oh, and don’t believe the savory part of it, it’s a total misnomer, truthfully it’s kind of gross.

Not to brag too much, but I’m pretty pleased I came up with this article all on my own.
Then Brendan had to point out that he wrote about this before I was even born.


Latest Comer Stands Up for Equality

I’ve got two tough and elder brother-types to keep up with. They’re bigger, louder and brain surgeon smart to me. If I want to get respect around here I’ve got to take a stand and today is my day.

See that, standing on my own two jelly legs.
See that, standing on my own two jelly legs.

I know it’s ahead of my time but I have to do big things to catch up around here and earn respect. My business failed and I got kicked out of my first post-birth assignment. These guys don’t respect me so I’ve got to take drastic action.

I’ve practiced standing before, so I’m ready for this. Once I get this under control I’ll be the premiere teeter-toddler, you’ll see. I’ve got a lot of ground to make up and hair to sprout, this is my day.

Have to rest my frog legs now. All this standing up business has plumb tuckered me out. I must rest. Thee may also resteth, so spake I, Dominic.


How Do You Mean ‘Duck’?

Listen buddy, I hardly know you, but when someone tells me “duck” I take it mightily seriously. You said it, I heard it, so tell me what this duck business is all about.

Hi there.
Hi there.

Is there a hazard I need to be careful of or are you just playing puppeteer with me? I’m skeptical by default and frankly ducking isn’t really my thing. Had you said “bob and weave” or “bounce like a Tigger” I’d have been whinnying and rearing to go, but “duck”? It’s an awkward move and not very fun for me.

All this distraction and I haven’t ducked yet and nothing has hit my head, nor narrowly missed it. I guess my confusion based paralysis didn’t get me in trouble, but now I’m even more confused. What happened to the peril? Did it get lost enroute my noggin?

Before I forget, I totally love your hair. It’s all curly, yellow and otherwise perfectly Muppetesque. Wanted to say that before I spaced on it. You’re a doll like that, don’t go changing.

So back to this “duck” business. I know you’re pretty hung up on it, but did you notice that there’s waterfowl in the pond? Those guys are having a quackingly good time splashing about in that filthy puddle of stagnation. Check them out with their swimming and birdie-barking. Ain’t they something?

What do you call these critters? They look a lot like those funny cartoon ducks we have on our shower curtain. Wait a second, these ARE ducks. Wait, I think I get it. You said “duck” and you meant it. Oh you’re a witty little Fraggle, aren’t you?

Well dear readers, despite the exceptionally high quality of this article you can freely disregard it and go on about your day. I’m pretty sure I’ve got this ducking mystery solved, if you’ll pardon my fowl English.

And thank you, blonde moppet, for your clever bit of duck-shouterous philosophical ponderings and uncommon half entendre.* Ah, good times, good times.

* That’s not a thinko, a double entendre would be a word expressed with a second intention. This was a single-intended word with a primary meaning I didn’t get. The math works out, trust me. I doppel-checked it twice. That’s quadruple certainty. Get it?


Please Don’t Feed (me to) the Animals

Had a chance to visit the reptile zoo in Monroe today and boy was it fun. But no matter how much fun it was, I have to again insist that everyone kindly not feed (me to) the animals. story449

The people there were very nice and accommodating. They answered our questions and let us pet, slap and interact with the critters as much as we safely could. I’ve seen reptiles at the regular zoo before and never are they as lively as the ones we saw here. All slithery and wiggling.

We got to see the ten mostest deadliest snakes in the world plus even an albino gator* (Al, I think was his name.) Also, we witnessed the awesome fury of the gift shop. They keep the place at 82 degrees so it’s perfect for lizards to hang out and humans to sweat. Ah, good times.

Here are some of the top highlights:

king-cobraSuper King Cobra – Not a real snake, they keep telling me, but look how big he is. Obviously a favorite like the anaconda from the movie, except without all the laughs. Also, he doesn’t bite, and I like that in a snake.


Spiky Tortii – They called them African Desert Tortoises, but I’m the expert here. They were munching a salad when I paid them a visit so they didn’t really come out of their shells. Still I know they wanted a quick Brendan nibble from my salty kiddo-fingers. Most uncool. (Click here to see these guys full-size.)

Leopard Tortoises – When I put a shell-patting down on their backs, they gave me a funny look. If it wasn’t for their Turtle Chow I know they would have given me a chomp. I mean, it was my choice to put my head in chomping distance, but I hadn’t really thought it through.

Inaniguanas – A simple DNA test would tell you these are real reptiles. But far from hungry, these guys were truly stuffed. Good thing too because I kept poking a finger in their dry lizard mouths. I can’t explain it and I won’t try.

Mister Rock Stander – I don’t know much about this guy, or his real name, but we got in a kitty-style stare down contest and he was unbeatable. I’m sure if I could have climbed in there I’d have been fangoriously devoured. Them’s little crittery-do’s, but I suspect they pack a punch. Pretty colors and pretty cool too. (Click here to see him full-size.)

Constructor de la Boa’s – This big, bad mama (not to be confused with the big Black Mamba, also very cool,) constructs high fashion boa’s for high fashion people. Why anyone would want a baggy, twenty-foot boa of dry, molted snakeskin is beyond me, but it takes all kinds and this girl is on the job. They tell me she could eat me whole, and that’s just not nice. Makes her a highlight but not a favorite.

Undercarriage Howdy-adieu – The Alligator Snapping Turtle had a swimming pool for a living room. Even more impressive was the glass floor. I wasted no time in crawling right under it to get a better look at his pad. Turns out you’re not supposed to climb under exhibits, but maybe that’s why it was such a highlight.

My new friends are cold-hearted snakes, but I accept them just as God made them. We had a good time and I like them, but please don’t tap the glass and please don’t feed (me too) the animals. I know I’d be a tasty snack but I still prefer myself whole.

You can find the Retile Zoo one mile east of downtown Monroe on Highway 2 at 22715 SR-2. Hours of operation are weekdays 10:00 to 5:00, weekends 10:00 to 6:00. Oh, and tell them Brendan sent you, that ought to confuse the pants off ‘em.

*Albino alligators are so rare that there’s only six places in the world that have them on display. That’s more rare than Mr. Panda and I got to see one!


Mick Jagger Crashed My Party

I know it’s Sunday and all and this is our traditional day to run lukegood articles, but I have to protest this headline. I don’t know who suggested it or approved it, but I’m less than thrilled.

Striking resemblance to some guy I`ve never heard of, or so I`m told.
Striking resemblance to some guy I`ve never heard of, or so I`m told.

There was no party and I don’t even remember this photo shoot. Further, I don’t know who this Mick Jagger fellow is but can only assume he has inhumanly big lips and crazy rock star hair.

Come on, just look at him, that’s brother Patrick in a goofy get up. He looks funny enough, can’t that be the headline? What’s wrong with a little truth in journalism? I know it’s not our strong suit around here but maybe today could be our day to start.

I can’t keep up this thinly veiled charade any longer. I’m going to let this go right now. I’ll start working on next week’s articles, try to get the quality level up for the future. I feel I owe you loyal readers so much more.

In fact, just to prove no one reads this far down in an article this tepid, I’ll repeat the previous paragraph.

I can’t keep up this thinly veiled charade any longer. I’m going to let this go right now. I’ll start working on next week’s articles, try to get the quality level up for the future. I feel I owe you loyal readers so much more.

And with that both me and Mick Jagger will let you get back to your web viewing day, already in progress.


Prince and the Pee, Still Slept Okay

About the only thing I’ve learned for sure in my long, dragging months wiggling the face of God’s tarmac earth is that I can sleep under any circumstance and over any surface.

Ah, comfy times two.
Ah, comfy times two.

Maybe you know the tale of the Princess and the Pea, but I don’t. Something about a girl on twenty plush mattresses who’s not difficult enough unless she’s bugged by the most subtle of discomfort. I’m the opposite of her.

I don’t need a fancy mattress or even a mattress at all. Give me my place where I lay in space and watch me go. Out like a noisy little Christmas light.

For that matter, I can moisten my super absorbent crotch huggers and not miss a snorty Z. I’m not proud of my indiscriminate wetting but I am proud of the seamless slumber I regularly achieve.

As the picture indicates, my snoozery may be catchy all the way down to my position. It’s good for me and free for Daddy-O. I haven’t even patented this stuff but obviously I should since there’s clearly some demand.

Daddy-O said I even kept him toasty. I don’t even come from royalty, but what a prince I am. For me it was great too, I must have slept two solid hours.

Now I’m gonna lean on my childhood ignorance and pretend I don’t know how to end an article. So there you go, right there. That’s me for today, I’m off to take in another swimmingly fancy nap.


Lice, Sniffles, Blue-Cluesery Going Around

Whether it’s guests or parasites, I fancy myself an excellent host. I’ve been the belle of the ball at birthdays, luncheons and even as a portable petri dish. When it comes to which ailments are in season you can count on me as an expert. story437

I’ve never had lice but I’ve taken on the challenge of a secondhand sniffle more than once (arguably more than my fair share, but again, it’s what I do). I know how to spot the signs of a health-threatening baton anxious to be passed and passed again. Forget SARS, bird flu and West Nile Virus, there’s a new bug in town that’s got me and the brothers in a fever.

Blue-Cluesery is a hybrid bug designed in a laboratory at Nickelodeon. It was intended to be used to pacify overactive children, but it got out of hand. It was only engineered to be administered through television sets but soon spread, infecting home videos, clothing, plush toys and even hats, binkies and permanent tattoos.

cluesery2As with many symbiotic relationships, Blue-Cluesery can set in at a very young age with little or no adverse impact on the host organism, in this case Mr. Dominic Benjamin.

Now that it’s infecting the real world, children at schools have been passing it among friends (and foes) thoughtlessly, as though it’s safe to share like a candy necklace. One kid brings in Blue on his backpack, next thing you know it’s on another kid’s shoes and T-shirt, soon half the class has a lunchpail and thermos.

As you can see in these pictures, our household has been just as hard hit by the epidemic as any. Parents are confused and worried because there is no known antidote for Blue-Cluesery. Doctors, scientists and psychics can only hope that their beloved youngsters heal from it in time, “growing out of it” as it were. Whether or not that’s even possible remains to be seen.

We’ll be experimenting with blue colored (and flavored) dog collars to try to clear it up. If you suspect someone you love may be infected with Blue-Cluesery, be compassionate but get them help. Let their joy fade and their happiness blink away. Take away their Blues Clues because you love them. It’s what must be done.


Fall Has Fallen

Look at this lovely weather we’re having on this dreary and typical September day. It’s as if the lazy, muggy days of summer have passed and fall has fallen harder than Chicken Little’s blue sky.

Not quite the lovely day at the beach I had envisioned.
Not quite the lovely day at the beach I had envisioned.

When I got up for my brand new day the sun was shining. I figured I’d head to the beach and work on my famously deep golden tan. I made a few calls, arranged transportation, made like a baby and headed out. I thought it a bit strange when they put me in a parka for my foray. A parka? I don’t even have a summer parka.

As we drove I contemplated whether or not I should go shopping for a sunny day parka and why I don’t have one already. It was then I noticed how nippy the air was. Unseasonably or seasonably, that is the question.

Spring sprung to the sum of summer, but where has summer gone? I Should I schvitz a bucket bundled up like this, yet I didn’t.

We hit the beach and I slathered up with a good cubit, cubit and a half of Coppertone, as is my habit. It was cloudy, desolate, and the wind had quite a nibble* to it. Absent was the volley and beach balls, the BBQs were nowhere to be seen. Any kites had all been torn away in the gusty wind. The pretty mama’s, normally in flowery two-pieces, were all wrapped top to toe.

The pearly, pristine shoreline, normally so inviting, was dreary and buried in autumnal algae. The crabs were snippy, the mussels wouldn’t work out and even the crustaceans were being shellfish. I did meet a starfish though, but he wouldn’t even give me an autograph. A star since birth, you’d think he’d be used to it.

Not one to let anything at all stand between me and a good time, I took my well-chilled lemons and made the briskest of lemonade. Keep your ice cubes in the freezer, my bitter treat is served colder than any revenge I’ve ever even head tell of.

It may just be me, and don’t quote me on it, but I suspect fall has fallen. Not even fallen, but tumbled on its face harder than I did earlier when I tried to set a new land speed record. Don’t ask, I don’t want to talk about it right now.

I’m a Little Teapot Short and/or Stout

Ignore Dominic’s wiggling and Patrick’s screaming, I’ve got a great show right here (old) folks. I’ve practiced this (in my head) for a good fifteen seconds and I’m ready to go… Did I mention I’m a little teapot? story433

Check out this craziness.

I’m a little teapot short and stout.
Here is my mantle. Here is my grout.
Throw me in the fire and chap my hide,
dunk me in the chamomile and watch me pout!

Pretty good, huh?

It upsets me that my efforts aren’t recognized as genius. My costume is flawless from me being stout right up to my lamp shade. Teapots have lamp shades, right?

No? Well then what do they have?

Okay, I don’t actually know what a teapot is and I’m not sure what this forest toppish accoutrement of haberdashery is supposed to adorn, but give me an “A” for effort and attendance at least.

My fans are gone. One’s off rewinding a muppet movie and the other’s mixing up some Enfamil. Whatever, I’ll have my last laugh on Broadway with my half-man show. I’ll do thirty shows a night and make tens of dozens of dollars. I’ll win a Brendy, you’ll see.