No One Else Would Have The Birthday Balls to Write This

Lacey is a master of evasion. If she doesn’t want to do something or doesn’t find it important, it’s best to move on. I have asked her to take a watch for repair for the last three weeks. Watch still broke. I’m positive that she had something to do with a misplaced leather jacket that she openly hated, but she will not confess and answers questions with questions that confuse me. We go to bed with two pillows each. She wakes up with three under her head and hugging the other. She states that it is accidental, but it happens quite frequently. Her abilities to evade questions, change the subject, and admit nothing make me believe that she’s secretly a CIA operative sent to spy on me.

Her powers of evasion seem to reach super hero levels around the 10th of November. I believe the axis of the earth in relation to the sun, creates a magnetic pull that sucks questions concerning the Marine Corps Birthday Ball from the air in front of your mouth and deposits them in the trash can. Lacey has managed to go 0 for 6. And that is amazing. Every year, she has weaseled out of it. One year she was very pregnant, but the other five have been a series of smoke and mirrors that would make David Copperfield jealous.

Not that I’m mad. I too, dislike the Marine Corps Ball. Notice I said the ball, not the birthday itself. Some motivated doucher will read that, show up at my door with a bottle of chloroform and I’ll wake up with “Semper Fi Mutha@$&/%#” tattooed on my face. I love the Marine Corps Birthday. A day that every Marine, worldwide will pause and reflect on those who came before us and appreciate their sacrifice. How can you not like that?

No, my problem is with the ball itself. A bunch of people that you see all day everyday, dressed uncomfortably, pretending to have a good time. And if it was just a gathering of the most uncoordinated dancers in the world (the Marine Corps is the whitest service by percentage), I could probably let it go. But it’s more.


This will touch in future bullets, so I will mention it first.
-Tickets average 50 bucks a piece. (100)
-Uniforms almost always have to be altered (30)
-Medals mounted (100)
-Hotel-More on that below (80)
-Gown (200)
-Hair (50)
-Nails (20)
-Gas, to and from (50)

Grand Total=630 bucks. Obviously, cuts can be made, but you get the point. Ball is ridiculously overpriced.


Despite having several venues close by, the powers that be always choose a location that requires a significant amount of driving. I could go outside, grab a handful of rocks, throw them in any direction, and hit 10 casinos. The ball I’m not attending this year, is taking place four hours away at a, wait for it, casino. This presents two problems. First, the cost of gas for an eight hour round tripper. Second, the need for a hotel room. Again, dollars piling up.

Time of Year

I get it. We can’t change the date they decided to start getting the drunkest people they could find to start signing up, but seriously, right before Christmas? See the above costs? This is seriously bad timing. Leadership douches will tell you that you need to budget for the ball. My response: If I have to budget for a party, things have gotten out of hand. And there are most likely less presents under the tree because of it.

Today, I will join with members of my unit to celebrate our heritage. Lacey again has used her Jedi mind trick to avoid accompanying me. Her powers of evasion are far too great to succumb to an overpriced night out. She will most likely spend the evening filling out reports and sending them to Langley. A CIA operative’s work is never done and she almost has enough information on me to convict.



Lacey Is No Ken Paves or How I Stopped Worrying and Embraced the Shorn Dome

There are things that must get done that I absolutely despise. Taking the trash out is one of those things. By the time the trash is on its way outside, it is testing the weight limits of whatever trash bag Lacey found on sale because I have used my foot to compact 100 pounds into a space normally held by 10. I feel like Superman manipulating matter. I equally despise mopping. And not necessarily the actual mopping, but the discovery of how poorly I swept. There is no greater failure than holding an impotent wet mop and seeing the debris you missed. Hanging clothes is another. On more than one occasion, I may or may not have reset the dryer to avoid hanging clothes. Full disclosure, there are clothes in the dryer that could be folded right now. I’m not being lazy. Time is needed to ensure those wrinkles settle in.

As bad as all the above are, they pale in comparison to haircut day.

Not my own haircut. I have grown quite institutionalized on the subject. Marines are required to have their mane clipped weekly. It’s a bit overkill, but whatevs. The origin of this weekly ritual is unknown. My guess is there is some ambiguous wording in some obscure order, written by some douchebag overachiever. Now the rest of us pay the price. Again, whatevs.

No, my problem is Carson’s haircut. He hates it. His normally calm demeanor is replaced with something that requires a young priest and an old priest. He kicks, cries, wiggles, yells, screams, and sulks. At the end of this spectacle, I am physically spent, covered in sweat and hair, and monetarily lighter due to the tip we must leave for the barber’s troubles.

We had tried everything we could think of until last Sunday. Lacey had the bright idea (I supported it) to cut Carson’s hair at home. So, with a Wahl home haircut kit, we embarked on mission to make this chore less deplorable.

To get Carson on board, it was decided that I would go first. Ya know, hey daddy’s doing it so it must be okay. I figured Lacey had seen me with essentially the same ‘do for over six years and if it did go awry, my profession encouraged bald heads. This would not happen because as Lacey assured me, she had skills like Edward Scissorhands if he had graduated from Paul Mitchell University. I didn’t believe her (her only other hair cutting experience was a failed collaboration with yours truly, where we failed miserably to shave our dog) but 33 year old, fathers of three really don’t care about appearances. Vomit covered shirts: no problem. Grant’s cold and flu version of scotch guard on my sleeve: not a catastrophe. Navy blue and black: no, that will not happen. I’m not a savage.

Lacey began the experiment that I didn’t know was an experiment, by asking questions that a seasoned barber/stylist should know. Guard sizes, fade issues, and proper utilization of resources were topics discussed. She stifled giggles while she cut. My deep brown locks fell carelessly on my shoulders. Concentration was broken as children ran through the haircut area/living room. Laughs unstifled. Apologies spoken but not meant.

Lacey completes her masterpiece and I temper my expectations as I walk to the bathroom. The image stares back and I’m returned to my sophomore year of high school. Although this time it’s my wife who has butchered me, not Fred Marion. The “fade”, for the two minutes it existed, was more recognizable from space than the Great Wall of China.

As mentioned before, this occurrence was predestined. I knew at the first giggle.

Lacey continued the giggles as she gave me a sweet mohawk (pictured below), then chromasized my dome.

With this enjoyable experience behind us, we focused our efforts on Carson. Ladies and gents, I’d like to say that we fought the good fight. That we discovered a method to cut Carson’s hair that created a relaxing, enjoyable experience. Unfortunately, I ended up physically spent, covered in sweat and hair, and my own head was follically-challenged.

Just another typical Sunday and it was awesome.