Monday, February 18, 2013

Don't Eat That

Happy Monday, Strangers. First of all, there has been some confusion surrounding the phrase "Twice up the barrel, once down the side." We need to all be on the same page here so I'm going to try to explain. It's complicated so stay with me.

"Twice up the barrel, once down the side" is a phrase I invented last week and it may be used anywhere in any conversation. The phrase works amazingly well because it sounds like a real thing and nobody wants to question it because they'll seem uneducated by doing so. It's the same thing like when I'm at a party and someone makes a joke about sex and I'm all, "HAHAHAHA! EXACTLY!!! EXACTLY!!!" but really in my head I'm all, "what?! What are they talking about!?" and then I'm all mad because Jon Scoville did NOT teach me about that at scout camp in the '90s.

So when you use "twice up the barrel, once down the side," the same thing will happen.  And the beauty of it is, you can use it whenever you want and it can mean whatever you need it to mean.

So, next time someone starts talking with you about baseball and you have no clue what they're saying and then all of the sudden they ask you a question? "Well, like I always say, twice up the barrel, once down the side. AMIRIGHT!?"



Next time you're in an argument with Larry that you are clearly losing? "And one last point! This is such a perfect example of running twice up the barrel, once down the side! Larry."

When you're in a business meeting and you zoned out and someone asks you a question? "Well, we'll have to give those figures another twice up the barrel, once down the side considering everything that has happened lately. I'm sure you all understand."

And in the off chance that someone asks you what that means, just scoff and say very condescendingly, "well, it's similar to the phrase 'over the tally and passed the shoot' but more frank." They'll just nod and say, "oh, I see." Because noone EVER asks for clarification twice.

See. Perfect phrase. Use it today. You will feel so powerful.

Second, voting is now up for the tacky craft competition. Sorry for polluting your life with so much nonsense. But please neglect something important in order to take the time to vote.

Now, on to the story for the day.

In Palau, there aren't really many places you can go to just read a book or write in a journal, or write out possible Oscar acceptance speeches. What? You don't do that? Yeah. Me neither. I bet Daniel does. He's so lame. Let's all make fun of him together for doing that thing that none of us do.

I guess those things can be done at the beach. But I mean that there aren't a lot of places you can go get quiet time where there are no fat, hairy Europeans in speedos, or Asian tourists swimming with excessive amounts of floating devices, or Americans complaining loudly that it's hot. Have I offended everyone yet?

There are NO book stores. NO libraries you would just want to go sit in. And not really any coffee shops. Until this weekend.

Guys. A nice quiet beautiful little coffee shop opened in Palau. I feel like we just got a Disneyland.

I don't drink coffee, just like you might expect from a good Mormon boy. And before you become impressed by my religious sacrifices, I should admit--I'm not actually interested in coffee. I KNOW. How can someone NOT looooove the smell of coffee and want to drink it every morning?! Since you're already mad, I might as well take this chance to also let you know that I don't like chocolate, the Superbowl, or the movie "What About Bob." I can practically hear you unfriending me on Facebook.

But I don't have to like coffee to be excited about a coffee shop opening. They have other stuff, too.

So on Saturday I took a book, ordered a sandwich, and plopped down in the middle of the place to have a nice escape from the tropical death heat and sea snakes, which I have not actually seen but does that really matter?

The center of the table had a small dish of what looked like chocolate cookies. I couldn't tell whether they were actually food or just a centerpiece. But I did a pretty good job of leaving them alone. Until Daniel showed up.

Daniel had been at a meeting.

Usually he has a pretty flexible schedule, but that day he was busy. Daniel teaches evening nutrition and health classes at the college. He's also in charge of a very frustrating health outreach program with the Ministry of Health, he's responsible for planning Earth Day for the nation, and he tutors a couple of high school kids. So he sounds like the busiest person in the world. But lately most of his work can be done at home, if he so chooses. His decision to take advantage of this has led to his designation as a "stay at home single guy." Sometimes I feel like we're a progressive version of I Love Lucy. Daniel just needs an Ethel. Also, would it kill him to do a little house work every once in a while?

Anyway, Daniel showed up at the coffee shop and asked me what those cookie things were. And you know what I did?

I immediately put one in my mouth.

GUYS!? When did I become the kind of person who puts stuff he found on a table in a public place into his mouth TO FIND OUT WHAT IT IS??? Am I a dog?! I once had a dog who did that sort of thing. I'm basically no better than a dog!

And you would have thought I learned my lesson when I was 7 and my dad and I were at a basketball game and we were standing in a concessions line. I saw a piece of popcorn sitting on the counter so what did I do? I put it into my mouth! And guys! Are you sitting down? IT WASN'T A PIECE OF POPCORN! It was a blue piece of chewed gum covered in soggy popcorn pieces!

The moment I bit into the coffee house "cookie" on Saturday, I knew I had made a grave error. It was gun powder. I'm sure of it. Brown, poisonous, dry, vile-tasting, gun powder. If I had to taste it, WHY couldn't I settle for a lick or a tiny nibble or--NO. You know what? I didn't have to taste it. Why did I think I needed to taste it in the first place? And why did I take a LARGE bite?

I tried spitting it out but it had already become a thick brown paste in my mouth that covered my teeth and lips and made me look like I was munching on poop. And that's when I noticed that EVERYONE in the entire place was staring at me. Including Daniel, who immediately took their side. And they all had the same look on their faces that screamed with attitude, "WHY would you put that in your mouth?!?!?"

In what was certainly one of the more unfortunate unfortunatelies of the situation, I had already finished drinking my water. And what's more, I hadn't yet paid, so I couldn't just leave. I tried desperately to spit out what I could into my one thin napkin while all stared on. But my attempts were mostly a disaster. Daniel was already practically out the door and so I was basically on my own as I walked up to the cashier, handed her some money and said out of my poop mouth, "those cookies on the table sure are interesting."

She responded in the care-free islander way, "yeah, maybe a-next time, don't eat that."

~It Just Gets Stranger

39 comments:

  1. Ummm, not trying to ask a dumb question here but what was it? Or was it just some good old fashioned Twice Up The Barrel, Once Down The Side?

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    1. gah! im dying to know too! some kind of cookie-look-alike table potpourri?

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  2. I have tried t comment like 20 times now and things keep messing up so here we go again.... I understand people looking at you like you are an alien when you say no thanks I do not drink coffee I got that look myself until recently I started drinking it. not liking chocolate is ok more for me. I respect you for not liking the Superbowl, I wish more men would admit to not liking it. now on to twice up the barrel I am more confused than ever oh well I had already submitted it to Urban dictionary we will see what happens later. and lastly you are spectacularly funny as always thanks for starting my week so well :)

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  3. Wait, so what was it? Was it a cookie or was it some odd table decoration gone awry? SO MANY QUESTIONS!

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  4. Stephanie Queen of NDFebruary 18, 2013 at 7:13 AM

    WHAT WASSSS ITTT!?!????????????????????? you cannot leave it like that and NOT tell us....the horror.

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  5. You know Eli, I always say in situations like this, once up the barrel twice down the side...

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    1. My sentiments exactly.

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  6. Wait....Daniel... the same eggs-sitting-out-for-hours-are-still-awesome Daniel, teaches a Nutrition and health class? Huh. I guess there's a little twice up the barrel, once down the side in all of us.

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  7. So I'm guessing "twice up the barrel once down the side" is kind of like "soale"?
    Also, whatever you put in your mouth is definitely better than a rectal thermometer.

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    1. My mom once put a rectal DOG thermometer in her mouth. When she walked out with it, everyone was laughing too hard to spit out what she was doing. Oh well...once up the barrel twice down the side...

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    2. Manda that just gave me goosebumps! Lol Eli is the one that put a rectal thermometer in his mouth. You should listen to that! If that happened to me, I would have my tongue amputated!

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  8. Once at a dinner party, we had a discussion about the little white castle centerpiece. Convinced it was a salt sculpture, my sister stuck out her tongue and licked it.
    It wasn't salt.

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  9. Please take a picture of the mystery cookies for us!

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  10. If you don't tell us what the "cookie" was I'm going to send you a box of these http://www.instructables.com/id/Unicorn-Poop/

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  11. I was so happy to read that you don't like chocolate either! People always give me the weirdest look when I tell them that, and now I can say, "Eli doesn't like chocolate either!" And they will know exactly what I mean, since you are basically a celebrity and all!

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  12. My boss's name is Larry!

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  13. I want to know what the cookies were too but not before saying that you totally offended me by leaving out any reference to the binge-drinking Aussies in your multi-continent slamming. We are people too and deserve to have other nationalities sling off at us.

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  14. And here we were thinking that there are two kinds of people in the world: Those that like Neil Diamond and those that don't. Now we have to add people who don't like What About Bob? to the list. I am so very, very disappointed. And I LOVE chocolate, but I could have been okay with just that.

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  15. a) "poop mouth" a grown woman shouldn't laugh that hard over "poop mouth" yet here I am chuckling.

    b) I am going to start using "twice up the barrel..." in every day conversation, You may be famous for this--inventing a new phrase. Or it may just turn out like the time my husband tried to tell me he invented "Congrats" Anyway, I used it in my post today. The true test will be whether anyone asks me what it means or if they will all just nod to themselves and say, "Yeah, twice up the barrel once down the side, indeed!" Let's be honest, we all know it'll be the latter.

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  16. I'm glad you clarified, because I kept thinking it was "twice up the barrel, once down the SLIDE," like a super fun amusement park attraction for gnomes.

    Either way, it is a grand colloquialism. Congratz on making it into Urban Dictionary!

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  17. Ohmygosh! Laughing so hard I am crying. At work. Which is a bad thing because I have to answer serious 9-1-1 phone calls and stuff. But, I can't. Because I am laughing too hard.

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  18. I have to stop reading these things when my 7 and 9 year olds are doing schoolwork. They go to school online and every time I read your blog and start laughing hystericaly they make their way over to me and we end up reading and laughing forever which screws our whole schedule up. AND Im going to start using Twice up the barrel and but Im going to always lead off with "Like my dad and his buddies used to say in WWII, twice up the barrel..." thereby giving the impression its a WAR TERM. Like flak.

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  19. My husband hates it when I say something he doesn't know and I look at him, wide-eyed--and say "Ummm, Common Knowledge!" Yep....I can't imagine WHY that annoys him.

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  20. so, I work at a coffee shop and would love to tell you what they were :) when you make an espresso based drink, you put the ground espresso into a round thing that attaches to the machine and water goes through it to pull the shot. The round disks are the packed, wet (and then dried) espresso grounds. Some coffee places put them out so you know they pull really good shots of espresso, because the grounds will crumble on the way out of the round thing if the grounds were badly packed, resulting in a bad shot of espresso.

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    1. Thank you! I was going to be awake all night trying to figure that one out.

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  21. If I had a dollar for every time I stuck some random food-looking substance in my mouth...I'd be very poor.

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  22. Eli: this is the best thing I've read/heard all day. I'm sorry for your unfortunate unfortunality of putting some unknown...something...into your mouth. (What the what, Eli?! WHY? I sometimes won't put FOOD in my mouth, even when I know it is, in actuality, FOOD.)

    Having said that...I'm kinda grateful you did it, if for no other reason than to share the (sad, hilarious) story with a bunch of strangers.

    Question: Have we learned our lesson at last? (Please say yes!)

    PS This Daniel fella is a bit of an enigma. I'm a bit confused, because of the whole "helping you on your deathbed" story you told us about, then the whole egg thing, and now this? He abandoned you and your poopy mouth after you (stupidly) tried to figure out what was on the table by putting it in your mouth AFTER HE ASKED YOU WHAT THEY WERE? Gosh, I'd at least have stuck around to watch it all go down (laughing all the way). -Wait, you know what? He sounds like a better friend than me...

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  23. hahahahah but what were they?

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  24. hey! hey! read mah comment to find out what they were! seriously go look at my earlier comment!

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  25. I am a first time commenter, but avid reader of Stranger. Each time I laugh while reading, however today, I laughed myself to tears with the way you used Twice up the barrel, once down the side in different scenarios, but what really had me gasping for breath was Over the tally, passed the shoot. Oh my goodness! Too funny! Thank you! You, Sir, are a delight.

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    1. I can't use the "tally" comment because my husbands grandpa would call "it" a tally wacker for little boys.

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  26. You don't like "What About Bob?" What is wrong with you?
    And Daniel teaches health and nutrition but he doesn't know that you can't eat deviled eggs that have sat in a hot car for hours? You eating charcoal or whatever it was aside, there is no logic in this post whatsoever. But of course, I suppose that's pretty normal.

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  27. I was thinking twice up the barrel once down the side was referring to a double barrel shotgun maybe.

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  28. FROM URBANDICTIONARY>COM: 1. Twice up the barrel, once down the side

    A self-contained phrase that states something is indisputably right during any kind of disagreement.
    After debating for hours, Julie said to Mike, "No matter what you say, I will always know tennis balls are yellow, not green. Twice up the barrel, once down the side."

    LOL

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  29. I noticed that in your international Slam-fest we Canadians weren't mentioned either. That's okay though, we're sorry that you overlooked us. It's just twice up the barrel, once down the side, I guess.

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