Sunday, October 24, 2010

For the Man Who Has Everything

Meet Wookie
(AKA John Kapron) 

Jayson and Wookie met at the start of their Army careers.  They were inseparable and maybe should have married each other.  (But then I swooped in and stole the whole marriage thing - see 10-10-10 post.)

Wookie was.....Well, Wookie was Wookie.  He was THE MOST original, carefree, childlike, independent, creative, loyal, crazy person I've EVER met.  And, all of that was what made him who he was.  In the Dictionary, if you look up "inner child", you'll find the definition to be "Wookie".  (And, if YOUR Dictionary doesn't say that, then you have an incomplete Dictionary.  Go get a new one.)

Remember how Jayson and I decided to get married?  While sitting around drinking with another couple....we thought it would be fun....Well, the other couple was Wookie and his "girl".  I actually think the whole let's-get-married-for-the-money-I-mean-FUN-idea was HIS.  So, we did.  The four of us got married at the police station, promptly got kicked out of the barracks, and rented a house together in Fayetteville, NC.  Jayson and I had the master bedroom, Angie (Wookie's "girl") had the last room on the right, and Wookie had the 1st room on the right.  Yes, separate rooms.  It's kind of awkward to hook-up with a girl, take her back to "your place", and find your wife asleep in your bed. 

So, life was pretty normal at our place. 

The boys played with chainsaws in the garage, our ferret played with the cat in the living room, and the two mystery dogs in the backyard played with each other.  (I have no idea where the dogs came from.)  We had a TV with a plug that wasn't compatible with the outlet, so the boys took turns electrocuting themselves....many times over.  Our house was like an orphanage for all of the guys still stuck in the barracks.  They'd come to our house to drink....and fall asleep on the couch with a teddy bear and a kitten.  (I'm serious.  There are pictures.)

Ok....back to Wookie.  This story really does have a point.  I promise.

Wookie drove a minivan - because the sliding door on a minivan made for quick getaways.  Like...when you were stealing firewood from the people around the corner, or holiday decorations from the neighbors, or patio furniture from the store.  Whatever he needed, he could toss it in the minivan, dive in after it, slide the door closed, and be gone in a flash. 

Wookie and Jayson would go for nightly joyrides in the Minivan (I think the vehicle deserves to be capitalized at this point.)  In between recon missions for free furniture and decorations, they would spray people with windshield washer fluid.  Pretty simple concept, really.  You just turn the little squirty things on the hood of your vehicle until they are no longer pointed at YOU.  Then, with enough practice, you can squirt people thru their open car windows, tag kids at the bus stop, and clean the guy in the crosswalk.  Solid entertainment.

New Year's Eve 1997...A keg and a couple of cases of beer later, this is the conversation that Jayson and I hear from down the hall:
Some Guy:  "Hey!  Boxing gloves!"
Wookie:  "Sweet!  I bet you can't break my jaw with them."
Some Guy:  "Ok."
Boxing Glove:  "SMACK!"
Wookie:  "Owwwwwww.  Hahahahahaha.  OwwwwwwwHahahahahahahaOwwwwwwww.  Hahahahaha."

We found Wookie in the bathroom, checking out his mouth in the mirror.  I was no doctor, but I decided I should probably take him to the ER.  I just didn't think you should be able to stick your tongue thru your two different places.  Wookie, however, thought it was pretty damn cool.  Needless to say, Wookie spent the next month or so with a jaw that was wired shut.  Funny, he thought THAT was cool, too.  Cuz that meant pizza, chips, Hamburger Helper, burritos, eggs, cereal, tacos, and cookies...all blended together in the blender.  How fun.  (Wookie had a thing for blenders, anyway.  The first time I met him, he was standing in his kitchen...blending up a rat.)

What's my point, you ask?  Well, it was nearly impossible to impress Wookie.  Nothing you could think of was something that he hadn't already done (or convinced someone else to do).  The guy didn't like the "conventional".  And, that made him a pain in the ass at Christmas time.  What in the hell do you get a guy like Wookie for Christmas??!!

Well, after driving past it for a few weeks, Jayson and I finally made up our mind.  We knew just what to get Wookie for Christmas. 

A cat.

A dead, frozen cat.

I held the giant black trash bag while Jayson pried the poor thing off of the frosty ground with a shovel.  I don't remember if I gagged.  I don't remember if Jayson gagged.  But we certainly both should have.  Especially when we tossed the shovel and the cat-filled trash bag into the back seat of my Ford Escort....and drove home.

The look on Wookie's face was priceless as he untied the bag....and pulled the cat out with his bare hands.  It was love at first sight.  He played with that cat for hours (as we watched in horror).  He was attached, and this was all our fault.  He was keeping the cat.  Wookie was keeping the dead, frozen cat. 

Dead-Frozen-Cat now had a new home - right on our front steps.

Wookie left the cat on our steps all thru the holidays.  The mailman told us that our cat looked sick.  The FedEx lady refused to come to our door - she knocked on our bedroom window, told us we had a package, and said our cat creeped her out.  The UPS guy asked us if our cat was dead.  We told him yes.  He handed us our package and walked away.  Most of the guys who came over just thought it was cool that we could get our cat to drink out of a McDonald's cup.

After a few weeks, we finally convinced Wookie that it was time for Dead-Frozen-Cat to move on.  Maybe bury him?  Throw him in the trash?  Put him back where we found him?  Nah.  Wookie just flung him across the street and left him where he landed...on the neighbors front porch. 


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