First off, an apology for the nonsensical baloney of my last submission. You’d be forgiven for thinking I was off my tits, or even stoned. It had no order, no rhythm, no metre, and most upsettingly, no point. And my god am I sorry. It’s a turd that needs flushing, but the toilet is broken (ie, mum won’t let me delete, she playing the role of the broken toilet in this analogy. She’ll definitely have something to say about that.)
This morning so far, dad has led a series of sprints round the neighbourhood, showing us each carefully selected breakfast possibility in turn. The point is somewhat lost when we are ordered to start running again before a menu has even come into the equation. We’ve settled on Hollywood Cafe, whose curb I currently grace, but not in the prostitute sense. You see, we’ve joined a waiting list for entry, because Hollywood Cafe seems to think it’s an exclusive club for the celebrities it inexplicably names its sandwiches after. But, lardy mctubbingtons that we are, we couldn’t resist, regardless of the wait, when we saw that sweetened bacon (crumbs, what an unmissable delicacy) was an option. Everyone else has opted to sit outside – the perks are obvious; catch some rays, have a seated rest, see and be seen. Not so the big man, who has insisted on remaining indoors in order to better patrol the queue and oversee its fairness levels, effectively assigning himself the role of line monitor. A position that nobody asked him to take on. It also means that when “Kempner” is called out, he will be available to be seated immediately, and in this way, there will be no possible chance that our table will be snatched away at the last moment by a bitchy rival party of 6 – circumstances that are only ever played out in Ricardo’s wild imagination. The strict military regime of dad is at odds with his dress – today he has chosen to sport a pair of hot pink shorts, a grey skin-tight blouse teamed with a delicate sandal, all tied together with a fluffy grey scarf – a piece no one can comprehend. He looks like colin or justin, the gay, glaswegian interior designers, infamously credited as introducing laminate flooring to British households, and my own personal favourite design gurus, joint with Llewelyn-Bowen (obv). Look, the point is, he looks gay, very gay,and though that’s obviously fine, I’m not entirely comfy with it.
A pause has happened since I wrote that and now I find myself in a Californian ranch, different to other ranches in that there are no cowboys, or any kind of equestrian possibility, instead just rich middle classes seeking a retreat from their otherwise delightful lives. Dad keeps declaring vociferously that it is “a 500 acre playground”, and mum is giggling uncontrollably at most things. I’d put it to both of you (hello to gran, and hello to the mysterious Asher (do you want to go out with me?)) that I have remained composed throughout my stay so far, only losing myself momentarily when I saw the free nut mix. Now I lie by the pool, a lazy girl with few responsibilities. I’m uncomfortable with the black man serving us, what with the history. I wish they’d found a different flavour race to be the pool boy. But that is literally my only complaint. It is like Center Parks, only monumentally better in every way, and I fucking love Center Parks.
I just asked dad to compare himself to a military dictator. He refused, explaining that all military dictators are wankers. I insisted he make the comparison nonetheless. He made me change the phrasing to “military leader” and eventually settled on Winston Churchill. I am looking at him now, and I see absolutely no similarity. Not one.
Yesterday we all took a bike and penetrated the golden gate bridge. Although we are Jewish and not goyim (except mum who was born christian and was later adopted by the people), we all seem to really enjoy the family fun a bike ride offers. Everyone bar Isabel that is. Isabel loathes it. Loathes it to a fanatical and maniacal extent. But it’s 5 vs 1, so ya boo sucks to you Bellybot, we will continue to pursue biking recreationally as a forced family activity. Sammy and I rode tandem, because this is our annual custom (this being the 2nd year of the tradition thereby legitimising my ‘annual’ claim). We ride very naturally together, the rhythm of our bodies moving seamlessly as one, a fluid motion of the shared experience. I appreciate that that makes it sound weird and incestuous but I think we’re all mature enough to realise that it’s not meant like that. We just make a good team – like colin and Justin really, but with bikes, and without the sex. The whole event, start to finish, was laughably predictable. Isabel did an inevitable tantrum and subsequent “strike” (this involves isabel parking up and refusing to pedal another metre, and which has never once amounted to anything other than isabel looking an obscene twat, and demonstrating a frankly dangerous level of fitness), dad inevitably viewed the whole exercise as a perverse time trial, a gauge for his own and his family’s varying speeds and staminas, which inevitably led to mum starting a fight with dad, screaming uselessly over the roar of the golden gate traffic and howling wind, crying out accusations such as “selfish” and “uncaring”, and then more explicitly, “fucking slow down, you shit!”, and inevitably, sammy and I sang out gayly over the chaos, joyful songs, Carpenters songs. Rachel was lost in the whole mess, although astonishingly, and as ever, not literally. During one such bout of strike action/crying/fisticuffs, some know-all cyclist bastard rode past lisping “not a good plathe to thtop guyth, not a good plathe to thtop.” We were momentarily united in our anger t’ward this hateful new character in the scene, but it was ephemeral: mum got out her gloves for round two when, on the return cycle, dad rode straight past the ‘beauty spot’ where, had things been different, we would have had a nice shot of us all in front of the iconic orange fatty. In apparent agony, and on the brink of tears, mum accused dad of “always zooming right past beautiful picture opportunities”, called him out as “the worst leader” (?) and finished by mourning the predictability of it all – the very same predictability that i am currently revelling in. When we offered to turn around and cycle back the 100 metres it was to the beautiful cafe with the view and the pictures, mum sorrowfully muttered that “the moment had gone”. I think we all had a very nice time. Till next year, you loony toons.
By the way, I love and respect every member of this family, much as this article would suggest otherwise.
Love from Jessie,
But please, call me Moley