You Jeanketeers Could Have Said Something Earlier, You Know!

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Neighborhood Starting To Get Too Safe For Family To Afford

CHICAGO—Explaining that the sense of unease she felt walking to and from her home had declined markedly over the years, Humboldt Park resident Kirsten Healy expressed her disappointment to reporters Thursday that her neighborhood was becoming too safe for her family to afford.

Area Dad Informs Busboy He’s Ready To Order

NASHUA, NH—Raising his arm into the air while leaning outward from the table in a bid to command attention from the other side of the restaurant, area father Walter Bierko called over a busboy at DiCapri’s Italian Eatery to inform him that he was ready to order, sources reported Wednesday.

Winning Argument With Aging Parents Less Satisfying Than It Once Was

CINCINNATI—After firmly telling them that she was okay paying city prices and that she would not move back to her hometown just because it was cheaper, local woman Ellen Wallace, 40, confirmed Thursday that winning an argument with her parents has become much less satisfying as they have gotten older.

Rescuers Heroically Help Beached Garbage Back Into Ocean

ATLANTIC BEACH, NC—In what many described as an inspiring display of selflessness and teamwork, a group of rescuers heroically saved a beached mound of garbage by helping the stranded trash back into the ocean, eyewitnesses reported Thursday.

Man Races Against Time To Take Out Trash Bag With Widening Puncture

RIO RANCHO, NM—His pace steadily quickening as he rounded the corner out of his kitchen and made a beeline for the front door, local man Henry Parnasse reportedly found himself locked in a race against time Wednesday morning to take out a trash bag with a widening hole in its side.

Man Pushed Off Plate Of Chicken Wings By Larger Male

WARMINSTER, PA—Looking on as the intense display of aggressive behavior played out over several minutes, sources at Flannigan’s Bar & Grill confirmed Thursday that local man Pete Samuelson was pushed off a plate of buffalo wings by a much larger alpha male.

Grandma Guts It Out Through Lunch On Sunny Patio

MALVERN, PA—Making the audacious decision to dine outdoors with her family despite a noticeable lack of umbrellas or awnings, grandmother Diane McGilvery, 83, reportedly gutted it out through lunch Friday on the sunny patio of a local restaurant.

Parents Formally Announce Transfer Of Expectations To Second Child

GRAND JUNCTION, CO—Explaining that the adjustment made the most practical sense for all parties involved, local parents Beth and Ryan Morgan held a press conference Friday morning to announce the official transfer of expectations from their oldest child, Jeremy, to his younger sibling, Angie.

Motorcyclist Salvaged For Parts

SIOUX FALLS, SD—Following a multiple-vehicle accident on Interstate 90 that temporarily halted traffic in both directions, sources reported Friday that a motorcyclist involved in the crash was hauled off and salvaged for parts.

Detective Not Sure He Was Close Enough To Partner To Endlessly Pursue Killer

DETROIT—After his partner of three years was gunned down last week while the pair were on duty, Detective David Killian of the Detroit Police Department’s Major Case Squad told reporters Wednesday he was unsure whether he had been close enough to his murdered colleague to single-mindedly pursue the killer for as long as it takes.

Man Pretty Cocky Since Beating Cancer

FT. LAUDERDALE, FL—Whether he’s bragging about his newfound appreciation for life or arrogantly refusing to take anything for granted, local man Daniel Oretsky, 38, has been acting insufferably cocky since winning his two-year battle with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, sources confirmed Tuesday.

Area Man Under Impression He Got Dressed Up

PROVIDENCE, RI—Explaining that the dinner he would soon be having at an upscale restaurant required him to wear something a bit special, local man Kyle Finnegan was under the impression that he had just gotten dressed up, sources said Thursday.

Man Honestly Thought Breakdown Would Be More Obvious To People

MAPLEWOOD, MN—Explaining that he had assumed the deterioration of his physical and psychological state would be readily apparent, 3M sales associate Mark Uhler told reporters Wednesday he honestly thought his ongoing breakdown would be more obvious to everyone around him.

Report: Dad Wants To Show You Where Fuse Box Is

YOUR LOCATION—Noting that it’s important to be prepared in case of emergencies but it’s also a good thing to know in general, your dad announced today that he wants to show you where the fuse box is.

Neighborhood Busybody Reports Sound Of Gunshots

INDIANAPOLIS—Once again sticking her nose where it doesn’t belong, neighborhood busybody Sally Christensen, 54, reportedly took it upon herself to report the sound of gunshots to law enforcement early Tuesday morning, sources confirmed.

Being Older Than Daughter Babysitter’s Only Qualification

UTICA, NY—Possessing no particular proficiencies or training whatsoever, local 12-year-old Jessica Radloff was reportedly hired to babysit Hayley Carden, 7, this week based solely on her qualification of being older than the child she was asked to watch.

Total Weirdo Spends Mother’s Day At Cemetery

ST. MARYS, OH—Apparently content to hang around dead people rather than celebrate like a normal person, area weirdo John Mills spent most of Mother’s Day at a local cemetery, creeped-out sources confirmed.

Child Visiting Ellis Island Sees Where Grandparents Once Toured

ELLIS ISLAND, NY—Pausing to imagine the throngs of people who must have arrived with them that day back in 1994, 12-year-old Max Bertrand reportedly spent his visit to Ellis Island this afternoon walking around the same immigrant station his grandparents once toured.

Email From Mom Sent At 5:32 A.M.

DENVER—After waking up and finding the message waiting on his computer, local man Drew Swanson confirmed to reporters Thursday that his mother had sent him an email at 5:32 a.m.

Man Proud Of Food He Ordered

DEDHAM, MA—Noting how the man grinned with satisfaction after his Buffalo Chicken Ranch sandwich with a side of spiced panko onion rings arrived at his table, sources at Chili’s Grill & Bar confirmed Tuesday that local diner Matt Schoesse ...
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Ice Cream Truck Driver Going To Let These Kids Sweat A Little Bit Before Stopping

MILWAUKEE—Admitting that he’ll never get tired of looking in his rearview mirror and seeing their little legs going at full speed as they struggle to catch up to him, local ice cream truck driver Derek Kenney said that he once again planned on making the children on Maple Avenue sweat it out a little bit before stopping his vehicle.

You Jeanketeers Could Have Said Something Earlier, You Know!

Know that old adage "You learn something new every day"? Well, I don't believe it's literally true; before this weekend, I, myself, had only learned two new things in the past month—that cold water is good for piecrusts, and where Victoria Principal is now (answer: in California promoting her skin care line). Instead, it only seems like you learn something new every day when that something you've learned is so mind-blowing that you wonder why you've never heard it before! For those of you without your Jeanese translators, here's what I mean.

On Sunday, I was brunching with my bud Patti at Ruby Tuesday, and she was all excited because, years after her painful divorce, she finally met a terrific guy! They've been dating about five months, and she told me that everything feels right—"not a cloud in the sky," she said.

If anyone deserves happiness, it's Patti. For years, she was too wary to date anyone. (Apparently her ex-hubby gave her a hard time—a very critical guy, and a cheat to boot!) A couple years ago, she dipped her toe into the dating pool, and after a couple drenchings, she at last found a stable inflatable mattress in Barry, who is also divorced. Now get this: These two gun-shy divorcées are seriously talking marriage! I was delighted! I leaned over the table to give Patti a big hug, but my tummy knocked over my mimosa. "I'm soooo happy for you," I said as I swabbed up the spilled beverage. "Face it, you're not the type who's destined to be alone. I know how miserable you were for so long, so this is great news!"

Patti frowned a bit. She assured me it wasn't desperation or hormones talking. "I was prepared to be single for the rest of my life," she said. "It was something I had grown used to, and there's nothing wrong with not being married. [Yeah, sure, Patti! I'll let that one go, though!] I got enormously lucky with Barry. You can't force these things. This is very natural."

I asked her if she and Barry ever argue. She said they've disagreed on stuff like politics and where to put furniture, but they were minor and they managed to work through them. They're practically two peas in a pod.

Now it was my turn to look quizzical. "But isn't disagreeing a basic part of relationships?" I asked. "I mean, even if you and Barry fought like cats and dogs, I wouldn't necessarily discourage you from seeing him. 'Vive la différence,' as they say!"

Patti stared at me and didn't say anything. She opened her mouth and closed it. Then she finally said that I'd reminded her of something she'd been meaning to ask me for a long time. "You get that relationships are ideally supposed to be, like, harmonious, right, Jean?" she said. "That it's not enough just to be married to someone, you should be happy with them? That you're supposed to be partners, and do things together at least some of the time? And love one another?"

Sure, of course, I said, but you have to take the sour with the sweet. Patti agreed with that in principle, but she thought I was a little too accepting of the sour. Au contraire, mon frère, I replied! I'm no cynic; in fact, I'm such an incurable romantic, I should be quarantined! But as someone who grew up reading the late, great Erma Bombeck and watching the great, not-yet-late Phyllis Diller on TV, I knew early on that marriage could be a pain in the patootie—and that it was okay!

Patti said that reminded her of something else she had been meaning to mention to me for a long time. They were just "being funny," she said. "Erma Bombeck wrote about her experiences as a wife and mother, yes, but she put a sarcastic spin on it." According to Patti, it wasn't like Erma meant people literally had no other alternative than staying in bad relationships or home situations. "You don't have to accept these things as inevitable just because someone joked about it in a newspaper or on some daytime talk show back when you were a vulnerable kid."

I laughed and said of course I knew that, and Patti smiled and said okay. But I have to admit, Jeanketeers, I don't remember much about the rest of our brunch, because I felt like someone had released the ground from under me and I was plummeting to the earth's core atop a Ruby Tuesday's booth seat. Patti did ask how I was because I looked a little ashen, but I waved it off by saying that maybe my chocolate-chip pancakes were battling it out with the mimosa in my tummy. (And on my way home, I may have also driven through a red light or two, but I'm not sure about that, either.)

Jeanketeers, at the time I was a tad irked with you. After all, I don't keep things from you. So just because people make jokes about their marriages being rotten doesn't mean I should have assumed it was the norm? This would have been something nice to know, say, 20 years ago. I mean, I always knew that, to my pea, Hubby Rick was a pickle, and he was not often in the pod with me because he had rolled into a dusty corner somewhere to sleep off his acute brine intoxication! (In fact, Jeanketeers, are you sure this isn't normal? )

Patti's words did get me thinking about some feelings I've had during my marriage to Hubby Rick. Like, sometimes I have this compulsion to drive straight out of my town and keep going for hundreds of miles without stopping. Or sometimes I find myself intensely wishing that Rick could fall off the planet. Before, I simply wrote them off as figments of my cockamamie imagination. After all, you know how zany I can be! Now, I wondered, could they actually be indications of how I really felt inside?

The next day, I was in a bit of a daze. I sat for hours at the flea-market stall I work at and stared off into space. I think I spotted someone filching a couple Avon decanters off my table, but it didn't register. I kept thinking about Rick and me.

When I got home, I saw Rick's pickup in the driveway. He must have just gotten back from his long weekend fishing with his boozing buddies up in the northern part of the state. I took a deep breath and squared my shoulders.

I found Rick in the living room, TV blaring, his fishing tackle plopped on the dining room table. He was eating Arby's. "Fish weren't biting," he said. "There's Bacon Beef'n Cheddars and curly fries in that bag and Bud in the fridge. Better take what you want before I change my mind."

I'm not sure, maybe it was because I was hungry, or fatigued, or maybe it was the prospect of not seeing Rick's hook mustache, or his paunch, or his "Señor Sucio" adjustable mesh cap on a regular basis anymore, but something inside told me not to bring up anything right then. It wasn't the time. I'm not sure why it wasn't the time, it just wasn't. I mean, he bought me dinner. Or rather, he bought a lot of dinner, and said I could have some. That should count for something, Jeanketeers, shouldn't it? I mean, I think it should. Not everything makes sense in life. And hubbies and wifeys do have their reasons, after all!