Occam’s Hairbrush

I’m going to tell you all a funny story, because I realized recently that it isn’t mortifying to me any more, but funny. Because I think that I have a rule to live by that is pretty much the opposite of Occam’s Razor. Occam’s Razor is basically that the simplest explanation is probably right.

So, if you come home and discover someone has eaten the last of the cookies, it probably was the person sitting on the couch covered in crumbs and not aliens who covered him in crumbs to cover their tracks.

I seem to believe in Occam’s hairbrush, a new maxim that is “the most convoluted, ridiculous thing must be the truth.”

So, here is my story. My friend Mary has a husband. A delightful guy who is the frontman in a band. Let us call this band “Pork Rinds.” Now I knew there was a well-known band called Pork Rinds. And I have known Mary for a long time. But I had it in my head that her husband, being an artsy creative person, was in a Pork Rinds cover band that, for the sake of humor, also went by the name Pork Rinds.

I know, even typing it out, it sounds incredibly stupid. But in my head, it made sense–like this incredibly avant-garde approach to having a cover band.

So, I’m explaining to the Butcher about Mary’s husband’s avant-garde cover band called Pork Rinds. And this is back in, like December. Just to give you an idea of how long I have been living with this fantasy and how long it’s taken for me to not be embarrassed about it.

And the Butcher is just dumbfounded. “Are you kidding?” and he sees I am not, so he just starts laughing. “B. people don’t have cover bands with the same name as the band they’re covering. And how big an audience could there possibly be for a Pork Rinds cover band?”

I try to defend myself by explaining that it’s not so much a cover band as it is a kind of performance art.

“So, it never occurred to you that this guy was actually in Pork Rinds? Did you not look them up on the internet to see if you, oh, recognized anyone in the band?!


“Oh. My. God. We cannot be related.”

Edited to add: I hope it’s obvious that Pork Rinds is a pseudonym for the band, because… well, shoot… even the dog gets a pseudonym.

Little Disagreements

1. The Butcher and I are having a fight about Tom Petty’s new single. I say, “You had me at the first five notes of the guitar part.” He says that he hates the musical arrangement.

2. So, while we were at Mule Day, we saw some folks selling some wood bookshelves. Later, my dad said, “Call those folks and arrange to get some and I’ll buy them for you as a birthday gift. Just let me know the details and I’ll work it out.” Later still, I say, “Okay, here’s the deal.” And he says, “I don’t care. I’m just giving you a check. You can do what you want with it.” Yeah, no. I’d already ordered the bookshelves. So, I could not put the money towards what I wanted–a patched driveway. And then the motherfucker didn’t even consider how we were going to get the bookshelves from Smithville to Nashville. He thought we could just put them in my car. I drive a Corolla people. The bookcases are over six feet tall. Unless there’s a fucking wormhole in my trunk, they’re not going to fit in my car.

Luckily, the Butcher has some awesome friends, and so, as of yesterday, the bookshelves are in my garage waiting to be stained.

I know it’s a nice gesture and lord knows we need some bookshelves, but that whole “I’m just giving you a check. You can do what you want with it,” after I already ordered the bookshelves, because he told me to… I don’t know. It just pisses me off. Like it’s now my decision to get some bookshelves instead of using the money on the driveway instead of his.

I was telling the Professor that the thing that aggravates me so much about my family is how they are pure patriarchy, but in this way in which they really count on one woman standing up and being the boss (behind the scenes), who they then can denigrate and sulk about being so god damn bossy. And I see that it’s going to be me. No matter how much I don’t want to be the “enemy” of our family, it’s going to be me.

3. Oh, and get this. So my oldest nephew’s mom is getting divorced. And, in Georgia, there’s a presumption of 50/50 joint custody unless one parent can prove that the other parent should not have it. And her lawyer, according to my brother, told her that her husband’s beating on her is not enough for the courts to take his kids from him. She needs a kid to testify about what he does to kids. So, she wants my nephew to. He’s ambivalent about it, both because he’s still kind of terrified of his step-dad and because he’s afraid they will ask him whether he told his mom about it and whether she did anything and he will have to say that she did know and that she didn’t do anything.

My brother is, of course, all “She never did anything to protect [my nephew]. And we all told her what a piece of shit [her husband] is before she married him, so it’s her own damn fault.”

People. My brother didn’t attempt once to get custody of my nephew when he knew for a fact my nephew’s step-dad was beating him.

And this is somehow all her fault?

But, right? Set up some woman as the secret all-powerful baddy whose every behavior is up for scrutiny and who cannot help but fail.

Not that she’s not to blame for letting her husband beat on my nephew, but Jesus Christ, you know who shouldn’t say jack shit about that? The father who also stood by and let it happen.

Fuck them both.

But that’s not even the end of it. So, I talk to my dad last night, who is in DC for my cousin’s wedding, and who has called to tell me about his best friend’s church being destroyed in a tornado (also the church of my Uncle B. and his kids and all the kidlets I have been crocheting for lately). And I mention my nephew going to court and being nervous.

And my Dad says, “Well, there shouldn’t be any problem. There are police reports about what [evil step-dad] did to [my nephew].”

And just as soon as he started to say it, I could hear the uncertainty creep into his voice, like maybe the police reports weren’t real, but were just some bullshit fantasy designed to stop him from pushing the issue.

I don’t know. I can’t bear to know, honestly.

But I am sad for those kids and I hope they can get past what they’ve been through.

Anyway, shoot, that’s depressing.

4. I was rereading the first ghost stories I have written when the Butcher came home last night. I screamed so loud when the door opened, I can’t even tell you. Even though I expected him, it still scared the shit out of me.  I think that’s a good sign.