Sunday, January 11, 2009


Friday night and most of Saturday, Evanston got pounded by a massive snowstorm. It was Diana’s morning to sleep in, so Elijah, Grover and I spent the majority of the morning watching the white stuff fall.

As mid morning turned into late morning with no sign of my wife, Grover started to get that look in his eye. That look that says, “Outside is 5th on my list of places to go pee and poop.”

It suddenly dawned on me that children love snow. And the love only leaves the minute you have to drive your aunt and uncle from O’Hare airport to Peoria in a massive snowstorm (shout out to aunt Julie and uncle Dick! Yeah!).

So I bundled our bundle of joy from head to toe and trudged to the church. Unfortunately, I assumed it was a light, fluffy, “White Christmas” style snow. But it was in reality an angry, nails falling from the sky style snow. Grover didn’t seem to mind and leaped from drift to drift.

We encountered our neighbors from across the street frolicking. Now, they are a nice enough family. But they harbor fear and hatred of giant black fluffball dogs. Whenever they see Grover they say, “Hello…grover,” with utter contempt.

Grover can sense this. So he immediately jumped on them. Thankfully, they didn’t press charges. But the dad tried to ignore Grover and play with his son. Who was being humped by Grover.

Knowing our standing in the neighborhood was fast dwindling, I scooped up Eli, who was rendered incapacitated by a 2-foot drift, and started back for home. I shouted for Grover to come.

Unfortunately, Grover lost his favorite tennis ball in the sea of snow and refused to come with me. He is adamant about leaving the church with his ball. This, coupled by his terrible sense of smell meant we could be out there for hours tracking down his ball.

I started shouting, “Hey! Grover! Hey! Hey!”

Elijah decided this was the moment he’d start repeating everything I say.

“Hey! Go go! Hey! Hey!”

I said, “You aren’t helping, you Goonie.”

“Hey! Go go!”

Grover attempted to find the ball in our neighbor’s kid’s hat. I eventually lured Grover home with a decoy tennis ball. But I knew we were off the across the street neighbor’s Christmas card list forever.

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