Wednesday, December 3, 2008
When Mr. McFeely joins me in conversation at work, he casually whips out an imaginary pad of paper and pen and pretends to jot down notes. He shifts his eyes from side to side and listens intently to everything said. When I ask what he is doing, he responds, “Don’t worry about it. I’m just writing an internet blog. Oh, the address? I, uh, can’t give it to you... Just act naturally and say whatever you would normally say. Don’t mind me.” Etc.
The other week he offered to give my brother an estimate to finish the basement in his town home. I didn’t know Mr. McFeely was in the construction business. I guess he is a Jack of all trades.
My brother lives in New York so I was in charge of giving McFeely the keys, which I hand over casually. Hours later when McFeely handed the keys back, he informed me that he made plenty of copies to distribute to neighborhood hobos and vagabonds. He told me of his plans to camp in the basement over the long Thanksgiving weekend with them and have a big turkey party.
I asked if he saw my Mom’s van parked in the driveway. He assured me that he made ample copies of her van keys too and handed those out.
JAKE: "Did you sit inside the van with the doors open and pretend you were in a flying automobile?" I
My brother and I used to do this all the time in our Mom's old green Pinto.
FEELY: “I only sat in the backseat. I ate my lunch and then I put newspapers over all of the windows to block out the sun and I took a nap.”
I’m not sure if he’s telling the truth.
The other day I called my mom to get the recipe for her famous homemade pot roast. Mom recently moved to Texas to help her aging parents. Their health is not the best and she is doing what she can to make their lives a little easier. Before she moved, she was living in my brother’s town home. A lot of her furniture and personal belongings are still there.
During our phone conversation, Mom asked if I would drive by the place. She wants to make sure everything is OK. I told her that McFeely is staying at the town home with a few close homeless cronies. “What?!” she gasped in terror. “Who is living in my basement? With all of my furniture???” I told her I was just kidding. I didn't even mention the van. She scolded me for joking about her things and reminded me to check the mail every once in awhile, even though she’d already put in a forwarding notice with the post office. After several minutes of reassurance and coaxing, I managed to hang up the phone and start dinner, which by the way turned out amazing. Thanks, Mom!
I told my brother about it and he just chuckled. “McFeely,” he laughed. “I love that guy.”
On a side note, many people have asked when I am going to publish another Ernie blog entry. I wish I could say it would be soon but I received a detailed email from Ernie’s wife after the last entry. She kindly asked me never to write about her family again. Ernie feels the same way, though I’m not sure why. So many people love reading about him.
Oh well, I’ve still got stories about Kenny G. and Mr. McFeely and stuff. We'll see how it goes.