Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Writing the Wrongs

Help! I’m in North Carolina, vacationing with my extended family and they’ve turned against me. It seems they’ve taken exception to some of the things I’ve written about them in the past. They’ve threatened to lock me in a closet and hijack this column.

Here they come now… Don’t believe a word they say…

Hi All,

Marc is on vacation this week. Today’s column is brought to you by ghostwriters who may or may not be related to Marc, and who may or may not be on vacation with Marc in the Outer Banks. Many of the numerous ghostwriters herein may or may not have been previously featured in Marc’s columns, and may or may not see this as a prime opportunity to have “equal air time” so they may enlighten you… as there are two sides to every story.

Those of us in the family have realized that any time Marc is bored, or does not want to empty the dishwasher, suddenly it becomes “time for him to go write this column.” We’re on to you now. [This week, it’s suddenly “time to go crabbing,” which is just a clever substitute for “it’s time to write my column,” because we know HE is not writing his column.]

While the vacationing columnist will frequently take literary license, everything you are about to read is 100% true. Authenticated and verified.

Sugar Grandma pleads the Fifth on the aforementioned Slurpee Incident….and says indignantly, “This from the guy who when the curtains are pulled and the neighbors aren’t around eats chocolate chips straight from the fridge, and can’t pass a up a three-gallon fill-up on a road trip because he’s out of Peanut M&M’s.” [And, by the way, it was AUNTIE who bought the donuts this morning, NOT her.] Considering the fact that she’s spending the week in a house with seventeen of his closest relatives, and he controls access to her grandchildren, she has wisely opted to limit her comments to the obvious:

1. Once you reach a certain age - that being the age you are when your first grandchild is born - you can do anything you want, so why wouldn’t you?
2. All the furniture, clothing, sports equipment, toys, camping gear, and generally cute “stuff” she has brought to his house with love, are just things he won’t have to clean out of her house later when she dies.
3. Whatever made him think free babysitting wasn’t costly?

Sister, Slayer of the Nutritional Yeast and Purveyor of the Mahvelous Margarita goes on record as saying that anything positive posted about her is absolutely true, and anything negative, well… see the aforementioned Sugar Grandma pleading the Fifth thing. And, I too, am a fan of the Oxford comma. Punctuate on.

Niece Abby, aka Abbazabbadoodle: He’s AWESOME! And he took me crabbing. [The vacationing columnist agrees and has approved this message.]

Son Number One: I didn’t do it.

Son Number Two: It wasn’t me.

Son Number Three: What happened?

Nefarious Nephew… when pressed for comment: He’s awesome and he’s good at building stuff. [The vacationing columnist agrees, and is forwarding Nefarious Nephew’s twenty-dollar payment post haste.]

IAArena008: I have writer’s block. Good thing I don’t normally write this column.

Papa Doc: Which of us has not suffered the slings and arrows of Smidge, the Mad Columnist? It’s only fair that the anonymous masses get a chance to speak their piece… perhaps not so anonymously.

Auntie M: I’ve met the rest of the family, and I’m no longer going to believe a word he writes.

Youngest Cousin and Last Shrunken Head on the Charm Bracelet: He did teach me all the words to Love Shack at an inappropriately-young age. Rusted.

Nana (mom): I want the world to know that all of Marc’s Lifetouch photos from his school days were absolutely perfect.

The Wife: There is simply not enough space in this column for an adequate retort to nine years of suffering my husband’s “literary license.” In the interest of preserving my fifteen-year marriage, I’m going to stop there. Ditto to Sugar Grandma’s pleading the Fifth.

We are having trouble finding anyone else willing to comment. They seem to fear a backlash of “literary license” in future columns. Go figure. So, we will close by taking this opportunity to mention that all writing credits from the columnist’s literary catalog should also give honorable mention to moms, moms-in-law, older sisters, dads, aunts, nieces, nephews and cousins who contribute free fabulous editorial and marketing support.

We have to wrap this up now, anyway. We need to let Marc out of the closet we’ve locked him in. It’s time for him to go crabbing again.

See you soon,

-Relatives of Smidge

Copyright © 2017 Marc Schmatjen

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  1. This is the most awesome column by far!!!

    1. Btw...I didn't realize YOU are the MMP and Oxford comma fan! Props to you!

  2. Marc, per evidence in second to last paragraph, I am shocked and dismayed to learn of your disdain (apparent by the omission) of the Oxford comma. Props to the MMP (Mahvelous Margarita Purveyer). Did you at least get to try the maple bacon donuts in Duck?

  3. I had a maple bacon, a strawberry, and a chocolate peanut butter donut. The only thing I love more than Duck Donuts is the Oxford comma!

  4. Well done, Sir...on all counts! Thanks for continuing to make me laugh out loud. - Jeff