Sunday, January 13, 2008

a birthday about nothing (now with videos & pictures!)

So, tomorrow is my birthday, but yesterday Mary Karlee and I celebrated. The first present I opened was Seinfeld, Season 9, which completes our Seinfeld collection. Mary Karlee planned a day-long series of challenges that required me to act out 6 scenes from some of our favorite Seinfeld episodes. He's the recap:

Scene #1: George can't return a book because "it's been flagged. It's been in the bathroom."

The backstory on this is the funniest part. Mary Karlee's plan was to buy a book she knew I would not want, and would therefore try to return. At the returns desk, I would meet the same resistance as George: the store would not take back the book, claiming it had been in the bathroom. So MK approached the manager at our local Barnes & Noble Booksellers about taking part in this scene. The 60-ish, career-conscious, humor- & fashion-challenged manager was reluctant to participate, claiming:
(A) "That's not our policy. Anyone with a receipt can return a book for any reason, and
(B) "I can't commit the manager working that day to do this skit."

So Mary took the bait, explaining that the we would come in on Saturday ~10:45am. What manager would be on duty then?

"Well, that would be me."

Which leaves us with reason (C) why the manager would not help with this: "I am not fun. In fact, I don't even like people. Go away."

In the end, my challenge was to take a book of my choice into the bathroom & read for no less than 5 minutes. So I grabbed the latest OSC book and headed for the Men's room. I stationed myself by the sink area and turned to page 1. One guy did come to use the facilities while I was perusing the merchandise, but if he was curious about my reading post, he did not say it, or even acknowledge I exist.

Scene #2: George buys an '89 LeBaron because the salesman claims it was owned by Jon Voight (the actor) only to find out it's previous owner was John Voight (the dentist).

My challenge was to call a car dealer, and "ask if they have any pre-owned vehicles. Pre-owned by celebrities that is." And in case you are sad that you were not be able to see me make this call, you're in luck, b/c we caught it on film:

We also watched the Jo(h)n Voight movie Glory Road while Marielle napped. Apparently MK also considered renting Transformers, but decided against b/c, according to her brother, "the final 30 min. are one long battle. You would hate it."

Scene #3: Jerry & the gang jump in the nonfat yogurt craze & subsequently start gaining weight, which leads to the discovery that the yogurt is indeed fat-filled.

My challenge was to go to TCBY and "demand to know if the yogurt is really nonfat." Now TCBY does not claim that their yogurt is fat-free, but that didn't matter. This challenge was made all the better by the fact that our local TCBY is owned by an Asian family that speaks little-to-no English. After we enjoyed our delicious 96% fat-free yogurt, I dutifully went up to the counter and said,

  • Me: I demand to know: Is this yogurt really fat-free?
  • TCBY (thick accent that doesn't come across in print): Yes, it is 96% fat-free.
  • Me: So it does have some fat in it?
  • TCBY: Yes, but very little.
  • Me: Well how do you know you got 96% of the fat out?
  • MK: What he means is, how much of regular ice cream is fat?
  • TCBY: Oh, 100%!
  • MK: Really? That much? (while thinking: What? No milk? No sugar? All fat?)
  • TCBY: Oh, yes. Very bad for you.

Scene #4: Jerry makes Elaine laugh uncontrollably during a piano concert by placing a Pez dispenser on her leg. After Elaine leaves, Jerry gives the dispenser it's own seat, which George does not find amusing. As the crowd applauds, Jerry holds his dispenser in clasped hands, applauding only with his index fingers.

My challenge here was to attend a piano concert & applaud with my new Pez dispenser. We found a piano contest we thought would be baby-friendly, but, alas it was not. We sat inside for ~4 minutes before Marielle fussed and we had to leave. We finished listening from the foyer, where we could still hear the music & Marielle could run around. (Funny enough, the music was also streamed into the restroom, which had better acoustics than the foyer.) At the end, we applauded with hands clasped around Pez dispensers, and true to form, Mary Karlee thought it was so funny she started to laugh uncontrollably.

Scene #5: Jerry, George & Elaine go to a Chinese restaurant. The entire episode shows them waiting for a table that will be ready in "5, 10 minutes."

My challenge was to eat at a Chinese restaurant with Mary Karlee, giving the hostess the name "Jerry Seinfeld" and wearing my new 'kimono' (a top to Mary Karlee's pajamas). Thinking I would face a non-English speaking hostess, I confidently strode into our chosen restaurant (3-6-9 Fine Chinese Cuisine) only to face a fluent 16 year-old girl. Also, there was not a soul in the place, so she didn't ask for a name, just a "How many?" So when I said replied with "3. Jerry Seinfeld." she did a double take and looked very confused. While waiting for our food, Mary Karlee suggested we go down to the bookstore on the corner, which had a double purpose: keep Marielle entertained, while giving my wardrobe increased exposure.

Scene #6: Kramer lands a part in a Woody Allen movie. He has one line: "These pretzels are making me thirsty."

We went to a play, and my challenge was to say to three people in the theater "These pretzels are making me thirsty." I played my Even Steven card on this challenge, which meant that Mary Karlee had to do it with me.

  1. Will Call Window Girl. As we pick up our tickets, I give the line and am told that there is a water fountain around the corner.
  2. Water Fountain Guy. Standing next to the water fountain, I wait for this guy to get a drink. As he stands up to walk away, I clear my throat and give the line. I know he hears me b/c his head reacts in my direction, but he stares blankly past me, not indicating I spoke or am even alive.
  3. Ticket Taker Girl. This was Mary Karlee's turn. She tries to work up the courage the whole time we wait in line. Just as I hand the tickets to the girl, an usher comes out of theatre and tells Mary Karlee, "No food is allowed in the theater." To which Mary Karlee replies, "Good, cuz these pretzels are making me thirsty." The usher shot her a quizzical look and then walked away without replying.

Sadly, the play which the stage manager claimed "you could bring a 10 year-old to" was filled with plenty of innuendos & borderline sacrilegious humor. So we left early. We stayed 15 minutes longer than we planned b/c the only way to exit the theater from our seats was to actually walk on the stage, and since there was no intermission, we walked right through the actors on our way out.

All in all, it was a very fun birthday. Mary Karlee put to the test my claim that I have "no inhibitions within covenant." I apparently passed and get to keep the claim for one more year. And now that I know birthdays are about embarrassing your spouse, next Aug. 30th is going to be a lot more fun.


Ryan and Courtney said...

Ya'all are halarious! Did I ever tell you Seinfeld is my favorite show? I watch it twice a day when possible. It's one of those shows you never get tired of watching. And then of course there's American Idol and my dreams of one day being in a Boy Band! I'll settle for watching others sing horribly off key:-)
Glad to see pictures and see that you are all doing so well. Maybe someday work will bring you back to Utah! Until then...be happy..."Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth"!(Gen 1:28)

Nick, Jen and Spencer said...

What a laugh! Mary Karlee, it looks like you better watch out. Happy Birthday Ryan and best wishes.

Sarah & Spencer (But Mostly Sarah) said...

Wow. MK, you are a genius! What a memorable day! I can't decide which "Scene" I think is the funniest. They are all top notch. Happy B-day, Ryan!!

Sarah & Spencer (But Mostly Sarah) said...

I just can't wait until August 30th as I know Ryan can be quite the practical joker.....:)

Good luck MK!
~Spencer(Not Sarah)

Leah said...

You guys are hilarious! I love your blog!

Stacey & Justin said...

I'm glad to see you could handle the joke Ryan! Happy Birthday. Mary Karlee, you are so awesome to think something up like that, way to go! Good Luck with whatever Ryan comes up with in August!

Stacey & Justin said...
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