The story behind the name:

One evening, at the Old Broadway Grill in Fargo, North Dakota, my brother caught the end of a Mountain Dew commercial. In the commercial, a Mountain Dew drinker was riding a shark in the ocean. My brother exclaimed in surprise, not realizing that it was a commercial. When I told him he declared "All I saw was a guy coming out of the shower with a shark." Of course, he meant water, but the idea of showering with sharks has been with me ever since.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Digging Through the Past

So, yesterday my brother-in-law dropped off two rubbermaids full of stuff from Mark's childhood. I think that Mark's parents kept EVERY SINGLE THING that either Mark or Dave touched as they were growing up. Seriously, we've been going through stuff for years. The amazing thing is that somehow, even though we've already gone through what seems like an endless supply of rubbermaids, new ones keep appearing... It's actually kind of spooky when you think about it.

Anyway, so there were two new tubs to address last night. I was in bed reading. Harper had already gone to sleep, so Mark was left to dig through his past.

He kept bringing things in to show me.

First, it was a Lego boat.

Then, a box full of baseball cards.

After that, a creepy, unopened Lucky Charms doll.

A copy of his high school newspaper. Three really terrible visual aids from a presentation he did from a history fair (seriously, they were bad). More Legos.

Then, the pièce de ré·sis·tance. I couldn't figure out what it was. It was made of wood... mostly. It looked kind of like an ax, except the part you would chop with was made of wood like the handle and it stuck off at a greater-than-90 degree angle. It was sort of shaped like the tail of a swallow. But, the weirdest part, was that there was a naked blade sticking out the other side. Just, you know, a knife blade... sticking out of the thing.

According to Mark, the weird thing was some kind of war club.

"And your parents just, ummm, let you play with that thing?" I ask.

Mark was laughing. Seriously, the club was the most bizarre thing I have EVER seen. It didn't even look like a very effective weapon.

"I can't believe this was in there," he says.

"Look, if we're going to keep that thing, you have to put it somewhere... up high... so that it can't be reached by children."

Mark looks at me, pretty surprised. "I didn't think you'd let me keep it."

"Well," I say, "I never know what of your weird Boy Scout stuff is, you know, nostalgic or whatever." We have a shield made of a turtle shell somewhere in our cold storage. And an ax. I'm not kidding.

Mark is brandishing the club over his head. He laughs.

"I could keep it under the bed," he says, "You know, in case we need to defend ourselves against a robber in the night."

I laugh.

"Gotta fight the crazy with crazy," says Mark thoughtfully.

He turns and leaves the bedroom.

A few minutes later he returns holding a bowling pin. A real bowling pin.

"I think I got this from bowling league," he says.

"Maybe we could use THAT to attack robbers," I say.