Sunday, November 22, 2009

The true story of how Bill almost let Annabel and I go to a S-T-R-I-P club.

How's that for a title? Piqued your interest a little, didn't I?

Okay. I know you must think that I make up some of these stories I tell. But I assure you, everything I write about actually happens to me or my kin.

For reals. Honestly. I'm not that creative. I can't just pull these stories out of my head.

I'm not sure why I feel the need to tell you this particular story. Maybe I just enjoy embarrassing myself. Whatever the reason, I find this story hilarious.

But first, let me explain to you why I have spelled out the word S-T-R-I-P, and why I will be doing so throughout this entry. You may have noticed that I have ads on my blog. I have no control over what ads will appear on this page. Usually, they are triggered by words in my entries and the topics I choose to write about. That's why you'll see ads like, "Potty train your child in 3 hours!" when I write about potty training. See that? I probably just did it again. Great. Now I'm going to have ads for bladder control pads. Darn you, invisible ad monster! Take these words and chew on them for a little bit: Disney World, Disney World, Disney World!

There you go. I hope that triggers happy pictures of Mickey Mouse instead of ads for S-T-R-I-P clubs. Because this is a mostly G-rated page. (Except for those times I sometimes bust out the swear words. Oops.) Pictures of ta-tas are not welcome here.

Okay. Back to my story.

You know how trading in your old gold jewelry for cashola is all the rage these days? Well, I have decided to jump on the bandwagon. At least I've been talking a big game about jumping on the bandwagon for about a year now. I wouldn't say that I have thousands of dollars of jewels lying around the house, but I do have a few old, outdated necklaces, bracelets and earrings that might be worth a little dough. However, it has just always seemed like a lot of effort for a little bit of green stuff. And there is the small detail of going through the boxes from our move to this house last year to find my old "treasures". That requires time and extra energy, of which I do not have a lot of. But yesterday, being a Saturday with not much on the agenda, I decided it was time.

I found this among my husband's personal effects.

I had to put it on a piece of black velvet when I took the picture, just so you could see it in all it's golden brilliance. It's a big gold "B". The letter "B" stands for Bill. It's on a gold chain.

Maybe this is only funny to me, or maybe it will amuse the people that know Bill, but it's a golden "B" you guys! A golden "B" on a chain! Meant for men! It's man jewelry! In my husband's possession!

As you may recall, I met Bill at a dance at his all-boys Catholic high school, when the song "In Your Eyes" by Peter Gabriel was playing. It was thrillingly romantic, at least to my 17-year old self, what with the smell of the boys' gym locker room nearby, and me fervently hoping that I wouldn't trip on the big wrinkle forming on the blue tarp that was protecting the gym floor, thus potentially making a huge fool out of myself. When I met Bill, he was wearing a beige Ralph Lauren polo shirt, blue jeans, and preppy loafers. He was not wearing a big golden "B" around his neck, thankfully. Because if he was, there would probably not be The Great Love Story of Clare and Bill. The story would have ended right there in the gym.

I am 35-years old, so I have now known this man for over half my life. I've known him longer than I've not known him. And in all the days, weeks, months and years that I have known him, the above "B" on a golden chain, does not fit into the picture. He is ultra-conservative, preppy, traditional and reserved.

He is not Vanilla Ice. Or a homeboy of any sort.

I thought I knew everything about him, but apparently somebody has some skeletons in his closet. And they're in the shape of a huge golden "B".

He swears he never wore this man-necklace. He says it was a gift from his mom. I believe him. Kind of.

Okay. As enjoyable as it is to mock my husband and his taste in fine jewelry, I'm rambling. Back to my story and my hunt for golden treasures.

I found a nice little pile of gold, put it in a travel-size jewelry box, and put that into a little Victoria's Secret handle-bag with tissue paper on the inside, so that I could carry it with me to the mall, and no one would know that I was carrying thousands...ahem...hundreds...ahem...tens of dollars of expensive jewels. (The irony of the Victoria's Secret bag comes later in the story.)

Bill and I were able to enjoy a night out last night, sans children. We ate dinner at a great restaurant, and then headed over to the mall, with me carrying my Victoria's Secret bag full of loot. We were able to do a little Christmas shopping first, but then we realized it was getting late, and I couldn't find the so-called gold appraisal place at the mall.

No bigs. "Annabel and I will just go to a few jewelry stores one day this week or next to have this stuff appraised," I said to Bill.

"Where're you gonna go?" Bill asked.

I named a few places that I have driven by recently that have signs advertising, "Cash for Gold!" in their windows. Then I said, "Yeah, and I think there's a place on Sawmill called Columbus Gold. I'm sure they appraise and buy gold there too."

"Columbus Gold?" Bill asked tenatively.

"Yeah. Columbus Gold."

"Columbus Gold? Really? That's where you're taking it?"

"Yes Bill. I said Columbus Gold. I've never seen it, but it's in a strip mall, and they have a big sign that says, 'Columbus Gold'. Therefore, I'm assuming they appraise gold jewelry." Duh.

Sheesh. Pay attention dude.

"Huh." Bill said.

"Huh? What do you mean by 'huh'?"

"Nothing," Bill responded, but I looked over at him, and I could tell he was starting to smirk.

There was silence for a few moments as we drove down a dark road, headed towards home.

Then he said, "Alright Clare. I have debated in my mind right now whether or not I should tell you this. It's too good. I've decided to tell you, but only because my children may be involved with this. Columbus Gold is not a jewelry store. It's a S-T-R-I-P club."

"Is not."

"Is too."

"No way."


"And you weren't going to tell me this?" I asked, getting frustrated with him.

"NO. WAY. If you were going alone, I wouldn't have told you. I would have just let you walk in the door with your little Victoria's Secret bag and make the discovery yourself," Bill said through his laughter.

(See the irony? The sweet irony of the Victoria's Secret bag now? I would have looked like I was on a job hunt. Oy.)

"But since Annabel was going with you, I decided to tell you. I wouldn't want her little eyes exposed to that," he continued.

"But it's okay for me?"

"Of course! That would have been hilarious! Can't you just picture yourself with your little Victoria's Secret bag?!?" he said as he laughed even harder.

Hilarious indeed. I'm a good Catholic girl. Clearly, I have never been to a S-T-R-I-P club. Nor do I have any desire to go to a S-T-R-I-P club. That's not how I roll.

"How did you even know it was a S-T-R-I-P club?" I questioned.

"Clare. It has all black windows, and a tacky limo parked out front that says Columbus Gold. Haven't you ever seen it from the street?"


Aren't S-T-R-I-P clubs supposed to have names like "Ta-Ta House"? "Cahoots"? "The Velvet Touch"? They're not supposed to have unassuming names like Columbus Gold.

Can you see why I thought it was a jewelry place? My brain does not automatically go to S-T-R-I-P club.

In my defense, I'm sure I wouldn't have actually walked in the place. I'm sure I would have noticed the smell of baby oil and sensed the overwhelming presence of girls with serious Daddy issues while still in the parking lot.

At least I hope so.

So there you have it. The embarrassing moment that almost was. Thanks to my husband.

Payback was sweet at about 2:15 this morning when Bill got out of bed to use the bathroom. As he was coming back to bed, I was jolted awake by the sound of a huge thump, followed by a loud, "OWWW!"

"What happened?!? Are you alright?" I asked, jumping up out of bed.

Billed whined as he rubbed his nose, "No I'm not! It's so dark, and I didn't have my glasses on, and I walked right into the doorjamb, and hit my nose, and half my face!"

And I just started cracking up. Right there in the bed at 2:15 a.m. While my husband rubbed his injured nose and whined.

As the teenagers would say, I was LMAO, also known as Laughing My Ass Off.

I know. My compassion is astounding.

But whatevs. That's what he gets for almost letting me walk into a S-T-R-I-P club.

Don't mess with me.

UPDATE: I drove the kids to school this morning, and made sure to notice this place on my drive home. It's usually obstructed from view by a now-closed fast food restaurant, and the only thing I usually see is the sign on the building, that is very understated, like...ahem...a jewelry store would be. I laughed to myself as I finally looked at the place the first time. Yep. Definitely a S-T-R-I-P club. Black windows, purple lights and all.

It's a good thing I have a healthy sense of humor. My own naivete continually surprises me.

Just another day in my life.

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