Let’s get this daily prompt out of the way right up front.

Invent a definition for the word “flangiprop,” then use the word in a post. 

This day, February 1, is always a strange day for me.  If you’ve been reading along, you know that I’ve been vexed by the daily prompt over the past couple of nights.  The topics were about one’s house burning down and what items a person might choose to save.  As I mentioned my house actually did burn down and people died.  That was 31 years ago today.  In my family we always celebrate this anniversary.  Although there is sadness, there is more joy because we believe in the resurrection of the body as Our Blessed Lord has promised us.  So, let’s not dwell on it.  Rather, let me tell you about my day…

The wife is out of town.  And there was much sadness.  The kids slept like logs throughout the night.  I don’t know how this phrase ever made sense as logs do not sleep, but whatever.  I was impressed with myself because they had gone down at a reasonable hour and had slept straight through the night, somewhat of a rarity for them.  In fact, I had to wake them to get them dressed for school.  To my credit, I had them dressed and NOT looking like freaks, gave them their breakfast, and got them out the door in perfect time.  My wife is probably reading this and saying “big deal.  I do that every day.”  This is true.  I turned out of the development and almost went the wrong way.  Their school moved locations after Christmas and this was the first time that I was delivering them to the new place.  From the back seat I heard my son call out “Daddy!  That’s not the right way.”  I paused for a split-second, looked around for other traffic, and then made an even wider turn than the rockin’ Town and Country was made for.  I felt the word traveling from my brain to my vocal chords and tried to stop it from escaping my lips; but it was too late.  “Flangiprop!”

No good?  OK, let’s try this one…

Look carefully.  You can see an unfinished flangiprop standing in the distance.

Look carefully. You can see an unfinished flangiprop standing in the distance.

I dropped them at school.  As we got to the door they ran inside so quickly that they “forgot” to say goodbye to me.  I walked back to my car, very sad.  I called my mother-in-law, Wilma to check in and let her know that they were safe at school.  She would be picking them up and we would rendezvous after I got out of work.  I decided to skip mass this morning in favor of a later mass that would be preceded by confession.  I drove back out to the highway and turned onto the service road.  As I prepared to enter the main traffic lanes I noticed the car in front of me emitting a tell-tale smoke from his tailpipe.  I’d seen it before.  I once had an ’89 Buick Skylark.  It was badass.  It was also 2002 and I looked like I was ferrying retirees down the Garden State Parkway to play Keno in Atlantic City.  One night while driving that car, I came to a red light and the Skylark died.  The next day, the mechanic told me that my exhaust pipe had literally fallen down at a point in the undercarriage where two sections of it were supposed to be connected.  It seems the flanges holding the pipe to the chassis had worn down with age.  It was an easy fix, though.  My mechanic, Toro (pronounced Toto), told me I just needed to prop them back up.  His words: “Ju juss need some new flangiprops, boss.”

Doesn’t count if it’s plural?  How about this?…

Wilma met me at my house with my darlings and we spent the early afternoon running some errands like returning library books and a little light shopping.  As we were leaving the supermarket I caught sight of a rather large woman in a rather small tank top just a-flangiproppin’ her way across the parking lot.

A stretch, I know.  And yet, you all have the exact same mental image right now.

He gets his sense of flangiprop from his dad.  On second thought, that sounds really inappropriate.

He gets his sense of flangiprop from his dad. On second thought, that sounds really inappropriate.

We picked up a couple of pizzas and returned to Wilma’s house.  We were having a sleepover!  This was going to be fun.  But first there was the matter of confession and mass.  I try to confess my sins about once a month.  It’s a wonderful practice of which I wish more people would avail themselves.  The odd thing is that, even though the priests at this one parish are bilingual, the mass was scheduled to be in Spanish.  I do not speak Spanish, except in my mind where I’m more fluent than Cervantes, but I certainly know the mass.  Believe me, even in another language, it’s all the same.  God bless the concept of ritual.  So, standing on line to unburden myself I tried my best to actively not listen to the conversation the three youngsters were having in front of me.  Try this gem on for size: “Yo, check it, I wanna tell him in Spanish ‘cuz I’m more comfortable; but like, how do you say, um, sessual relations?”  Yes, the Spaniards are infamous for swapping their “s’s” and “x’s”.  I wanted to interject my new favorite “F” word but I held back figuring it would be wrong to set someone up for a false confession.  Instead, I sort of chuckled at the innocence in so un-innocent a question.  After a while I emerged from the box and took my seat in a pew.  The mass progressed as usual.  And then, in place of a homily, the priest stepped down from the sanctuary.  He approached a couple who appeared to be in their early 50’s.  They were surrounded by three young men.  The younger dudes all had white shirts and dark ties but no jackets.  The older gentleman sported a decent suit while the lady was wearing a white pants-suit and holding flowers.  How did I miss this?  I couldn’t tell if they were simply renewing their vows or actually getting married.  And then the priest’s words lifted neatly from a read leatherbound volume made everything clear.  “…¿en las buenas y en las malas, en la riqueza y en la pobreza, en la salud y en la enfermedad, hasta que la flángiprop nos separe?”

Did you like the accents?  Throw me a bone here.

By the end of the evening, having been a superb daddy in the absence of my wife, worked a full day, driven all over town, civic-mindedly returned my kids’ library books, witnessed three sacraments, AND watched a full movie with my kittens I was ready to call it quits.  Since I was at Wilma’s house I decided to take advantage of her infinitely better cable package to watch some history and science shows I haven’t seen in a while.  I fell asleep listening to a fascinating re-telling of the early days of South Dakota when the Sioux peoples battled the attacking Flangiprop warriors for control of the Badlands.

Yeah, I’m with you…  This needs to end.



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