Wednesday, January 17, 2018

When Adult Children Surprise You

I told Second Son that his grandmother and I will be going to Oahu soon where we will decamp on Waikiki Beach.  This is the text conversation that followed.

HIM:  You have to go to Murakami Udon.

ME:  What's that?

HIM:  It's a Japanese udon noodle place.  It's on Kuhio Ave literally the next street behind your hotel.

ME:  Oooooooo!

HIM:  The noodles are big fat Japanese noodles and you add in your preferred spices and meats and whatnot.  Then you can add tempura.  It's one of the best things I've ever had and it's really cheap.  Like $8.00 a person.

ME:  Heaven!!!

HIM:  Grandma will like it too.  And literally it's a 4 or 5 minute walk from your hotel.

ME:  Excellent!

HIM:  I went like three times last year.

ME:  Grandma is always hungry.  It's the first thing she talks about in the morning.  Food.

HIM:  Of course.  It's very important on vacation.

ME:  Grandma will be game!  Recommendations?

HIM:  I got hot Udon in one of the broths and any of the tempura is good.  Japanese food is great because it's fancy deep fried shit.

ME:  I just read this out loud to your grandmother.

HIM:  The curry udon and niku udon were my favorite.  Nike is a broth with a light fish and seaweed flavor with caramelized onions and sweet beef.

Okay.  This is where I paused.  I wanted to say, "Who are you?"  Food is important if you have the Edwards DNA.  It just is.  But this?  This is a notch above.  Caramelized onions?  Sweet beef? I was surprised by the level of engagement and intensity.  The only time this kid ever cried in his life was when the Cubs won the World Series.

HIM:  I literally just copied the menu.  (It's online.)

Okay again.  Still surprised by my kid.  Just not as much.  

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Talk about collusion

I've spent a lot of energy detesting Donald Trump over the past year and a half, but my loathing reached new levels when CNN reported that Trump delighted in the consternation caused by his comment about shithole countries.  I could practically hear him cackle.  LOOK AT ME!  I'M THE CENTER OF ATTENTION!

And that's when I decided I'm not going to spend another ounce of emotional energy on the man.  I am not colluding with him anymore.

He's there.  I can't do anything about that fact.  I can only turn off the TV and refuse to click onto any stories about him online.  Done feeding the troll, you know?

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

The Way We Are Now

A few Christmases ago I caught Ken Cannon secretly watching the Hallmark Channel.  Like, a lot.

"Wait," I'd say.  "Are you secretly watching the Hallmark Channel?"

"No," he'd say.

But I kept catching him at it.

"Wait," I'd say.  "Are you secretly watching the Hallmark Channel?"

"A little," he'd say.  "But the movies are really stupid."  Which, apparently, is the reason he'd always change the channel when I'd walk into the room.

And then last Christmas he stopped changing the channel.  He just owned it.  He, Ken Cannon, likes Hallmark Christmas movies.  And now he's watching the cozy mysteries they produce, too.

Which brings me to a description of our new reality as a couple.  He's downstairs watching the Hallmark Channel.  I'm upstairs watching a game.  I don't even care which game it is as long as it's a game.

And there you have it.  Old Love.

Monday, January 8, 2018

A confession

Sometimes when I hear stories about Donald Trump--and it's REALLY hard not to hear stories about Donald Trump these days--I start to worry.  Am I Trump-ish?

I ask this question because as it turns out I (apparently) share some of the same qualities decried about 45.  To wit--

1.  I have a short attention span.
2.  I am ADHD.
3.  I don't read instructions.

I haven't heard anybody actually say that third thing about the president but I'm assuming this is the case because of #1 and #2 and clearly the man didn't read the instruction manual called A Nation and How to Run One before entering office.

It's been sobering to see the worst of my characteristics played out on cable network news for all the world to see.  But I can totally promise you this--I will NOT start a nuclear war.

You're welcome.

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Maybe slightly melancholy here

Normally I write my column over the weekend.  But that column, for now, has been eliminated.

Honestly, I was surprised that it went on as long as it did.  I first started up in 1985 for Parent Express, carried on at The Deseret News, and moved over to The Tribune.  So you see it was about a 30 year run.  Can't complain about that.

Right now I'm viewing this as an opportunity to do something else.  I'm enjoying the advice column gig.  And maybe I'll get my butt in gear and start writing novels again.  But yeah.  It'll be weird not to send something to the paper first thing Monday morning.

Wait.  I KNOW!  I'LL BLOG!

Happy New Year, Everyone!

Friday, January 5, 2018

What I Wish For Today, Part 1

I wish Ken Cannon could stay home with me today so I'd be able to help him shout at the TV.

Ken Cannon thinks he's a very shy, very retiring person.  But he's not.  He lives out loud, which is one of his many charms.  He is especially fond of having noisy, extended conversations with all those Talking Heads on TV.  And he was in fine form this morning with the rushed publication (Henry Holt says, "THANK YOU, MR. PRESIDENT) of Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House this morning.  He had plenty to say, of course.

Plenty. To. Say.

Friday, December 29, 2017


Today is the anniversary of the Coach's death.

It's also the anniversary of one of TRQ's finest moments ever.  Here's the story.

After we realized that Dad had passed away, TRQ asked me to call the mortuary and make arrangements.

"Who should I call?"

"You know.  Olpin over there on 8th North in Orem."

So I looked up Olpin's number and called.  They arrived promptly and could not have been kinder or more professional.

Meanwhile, Ken Cannon began making arrangements for the the Texans to come home for the funeral.  The airlines needed information.  Where was the body?  I told Ken Cannon, "You know.  Olin over there on 8th North in Orem."

There was a pause.  And then this:  "Olpin isn't on 8th North in Orem."

Another pause.  Me this time.  "Yes.  Yes it is."

Less of a pause.  "No.  No it isn't.  Look it up."

So I did and right there online it said "State Street," which is not exactly the same thing as "8th North."  So I called.

ME:  Hello.  Just checking up here.  Is Coach Edwards' body there?"

Polite pause.

ME AGAIN:  It's okay.  I'm his daughter.

THEM:  Yes.  He's here.

ME:  Okay.  Where are you located?

THEM:  In Orem.  On State Street.

ME:  Are you sure you're not on 8th North?

THEM:  Yes.

ME (desperation growing):  WERE YOU EVER ON 8TH NORTH?!

(AUTHOR'S NOTE:  I like all the magical thinking going on here.  If I can just get them to say the words 8th North, then everything will be okay.)

THEM:  No.

The woman I spoke with could not have been kinder or more patient.  It's possible that grieving family members call with crazy questions all the time.  All I know is that when I hung up, I was sick at heart.  How was I going to tell TRQ what I'd done?  For the record, there are very few feelings worse in this life than the one caused when you realize you've sent your father's body to the wrong mortuary.

 Ask anybody who's done this.  They'll tell you I'm right.

Anyway, I screwed up my courage and called TRQ on her cellphone because she was out riding around with my brother in his car.  "Mom," I said.  "I have some bad news."  And then I told her what had happened.

There was another long pause.  It was a day of many long pauses.  Finally she said, "Oh, Honey.  It's a shame to lose your father twice in one day, isn't it?"

I laughed.  I cried.  I laughed.  She laughed.  She cried.  She laughed.  I called her this morning and we laughed again.

TRQ is the best, people.  The best.  And the people at Olpin could not have arranged things better.  In fact, it turned out that the mortician Kelly Sandberg's father played football with my father in high school.  I cannot tell you how sweet this detail seemed to me.  Dad was in good hands--at the place he was certainly meant to be.