You must be this tall to enter the ark

The rains are GONE!!  Today it’s clear, sunny and beautiful so I thought I would post another column by you know who.
By Chris Erskine

January 23, 2010


"I’m 7," the little guy tells me the other day.


"You know my friend Daniel?"


"He’s 6 and three ounces."

I love these Family Circus moments. We don’t normally have a Family Circus kind of family. We trend toward sarcasm and savage mimicry. In our family, a joke isn’t really considered a success unless someone’s crying.

No, I don’t know where it comes from either. I’ve always been a very upbeat person. It’s the Irish in me. I glow from the inside (which helps illuminate my fishbowl head).

By the way, I’m building an ark. There’s room for you, me and several other dads I drink with. It hasn’t been child-proofed, so, sorry, no kids. Drats.

There are bars fore and aft and a big conversation pit. Yeah, it looks like the Monte Carlo, if that’s what you’re wondering. There’ll be slot machines and show girls. A sports book. It’s the kind of ark Ricky Gervais might build.

For, I’m not sure these rains will ever end. Monday, our street looked like the Mississippi River. On Tuesday, the Nile.

As I sit at my desk designing the ark, I can hear the rain flushing through the downspouts. It sounds like the restroom at Dodger Stadium. I miss beer and baseball so much I almost cry.

"It’s so cozy like this," my dental hygienist noted when the rain started.

Yeah, sure.

"You know, I’m glad we’re finally getting a little winter," the lovely and patient older daughter added.

Well, sweetie, let me tell you about a California winter. The fires are finally out, that’s the good part. Meanwhile, our friends Eric and Shelby are watching a heap of mud at the neighbor’s house up the hill, praying it won’t slide.

They moved the family here from Boston last year, and I remember Eric waxing poetic that first fall about the great climate blah-blah-blah. . . .

For them, I’m saving a little extra room on the ark.

When it rains out here, it doesn’t just rain. God’s tear ducts open, debris basins surge.

Californians aren’t good with rain. They say they welcome it, but after two or three days, they are ready to throw themselves in front of their Priuses (would that even hurt?).

Incidentally, Prius drivers are always a kick to watch in a storm because they aren’t quite sure whether they should really be out in the rain at all — the car being partially electric.

In rain, Prius drivers behave as if they might get electrocuted if they hit a puddle.

Speaking of cars, it rained so hard the other day, people were actually driving the speed limit. I’d never witnessed such a thing, so many people obeying the law all at once. And on L.A. freeways, no less.

My first reaction was that it was probably a funeral. But no one out here ever dies. They just get moved to the 11:30 spot, right after the local news.

Seeing that many people obeying the speed limit was so odd, I almost called the Highway Patrol, just so they could share the experience.

Hello, 911, you won’t believe this!

What’s the problem, sir?

These idiots are obeying the law.

How long has this been going on?

About a minute!

We’ll send out two units right away.

You can’t expect to obey the law like that and get away with it. Not in this town. We just won’t put up with it.

It is a bountiful place, Southern California. All the things it has, it has in excess: big views, heavy traffic, buxom weather girls.

Have you ever tried watching an L.A. weather report with your wife? It’s a delicate moment. You’re both sitting there pretending that Miss January doesn’t have the tightest sweater in the history of yarn. There’s a blond elephant in the room, and no one will acknowledge her.

By the time the forecaster gets to the extended forecast, blood is pouring from my temples.

As a husband, if you say anything, you’re a pig. If you don’t acknowledge it, your wife starts to wonder what you’re probably thinking.

If my wife knew what I was actually thinking during most weather segments, she’d divorce me four times. She’d take the house. Then she’d drop it on me. Then she’d have me bulldozed. Then she’d bulldoze my nice ark.

But to really rub it in, she’d give me custody of our four kids. No man should ever have to go through that, no matter the infraction.

"You know, you could’ve been a weather girl," is what I usually say when a drop-dead gorgeous weather forecaster appears on TV.

"You’re such a . . . ," my wife responds.

There you go. Another Family Circus moment.

It’s almost pouring.

HAHAHAHA!!!!!  Love this guy’s writing!  Have a Great weekend.

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4 Responses to You must be this tall to enter the ark

  1. CoCo says:

    This guy should be a stand-up comedian…lol All funny, especially driving the Prius in the rain.

  2. CAROL says:

    Must be only Ca. Bob..all our weather people are GUYS here.. LOL..good one.. glad the sun is shining . I can’t imagine the cleanup they are having there abouts.. take care : )

  3. Isabelle says:

    LOL! He is really good!!!

  4. Twila says:

    Eeew, a reason NOT to own a Prius? Well maybe. Anyway, thanks for sharing Chris with us, Bob. He really is pretty funny. So, ya’ got yur rain storm cleanup done yet? If so, then haul yur butt out here and help me scoop the remaining results of those storms off my steps & sidewalks would ya’? 🙂 I really should get some pix up so you can see what yur rains did to us! 😉 Have a grreat day!

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