Monday, January 17, 2011

I draws 'em as I sees 'em

When we're playing Scrabble, I'm the designated scorekeeper. That means I have a pen and a pad of paper at the ready. So if my opponent (and I'm not naming any names) ends up taking too long with his/her turn, I get a little bored and start doodling. I'm sure that some day, all of my drawings will end up in a glorious coffee table book. But in the meantime, I'm storing them all in the Scrabble box. Sifting through them from time to time, they serve as a great reminders of places we've visited, friends we've spent time with, and fun things we've done. Here are a few sketches from the Scrabble box:

This drawing commemorates the first time our friend Ian, who's now 11, tried his first hamburger. He was 10 months old at the time, and we were in a restaurant called "The Charcoal Pit" in Wilmington, DE, the night before Thanksgiving. Having spent all day in the car, we decided to go out for a burger, fries, and a milkshake. All settled into our booth, Ian's mom popped a teaspoon-sized piece of burger into his mouth. About two seconds later, that burger, along with all the rest of the content's of Ian's stomach, came hurtling out his mouth. His quick-thinking mom expertly caught it all in her hands, amazing and disgusting me at the same time. That's me on the right, and Ian's mom in the middle, telling me to get over myself!

This drawing always make me cringe! It's my younger sister, when she and her husband came to Boston probably more than ten years ago. They brought their bikes with them, and we were enjoying a ride along the Charles River when we stopped for a soda. When we finished, we all stood up and my brother-in-law was trying to help my sister put her helmet back on. Unfortunately, he caught just a little bit of the underneath of her chin in the plastic fastening. Ouch!

When your Scrabble rack is filled with crappy letters, it's hard to make a move that's worth anything. So I've got lots of doodles featuring me quitting the game. To be clear here - I've never quit a Scrabble game because I'm doing poorly, but I've felt like quitting plenty of times. I have NO idea why there's a face floating above my "I Quit" sign. 

Here's my tearful "I Quit" from a long-ago vacation in Palm Springs, CA. We were staying at a place called the Harlow Club, a guesthouse with lush gardens and a beautiful pool. It was February, our favorite time to escape the Boston winter to spend a few days in the sun. The Club must have been going through some hard times, because for three days, we were the only guests in the place. Part of the appeal was the lunch was served poolside every afternoon, and rather that ordering out from the local deli, the owners made us a wonderful homemade lunch (salads, sandwiches, fruit, ice tea, and desserts) every day. It was like our own little kingdom.

OK - one more "I quit" drawing. This is from 10 years ago. If you can't read it, it says "Mike narrows his chances of winning the "Good Sportsmanship" award after receiving all of the vowels in the Srabble game. 12/13/01"

Peter was working for a large corporation when this was drawn. This was how I imagined his Monday mornings at the office.

A couple of portraits.

Our view from the beach cottage we rent each summer in Provincetown, at the tip of Cape Cod. We've been spending at least a week (two weeks most years) at the beach for probably eight years running, and it's the vacation I most look forward to each year. It's total down-time and spending time playing with Otis, our Portuguese Water dog, on the beach.

Here's my drawing of Peter winning a killer game of Scrabble with a record-setting score of 461 on the beach in Provincetown. How did he do that? By putting down two words ("hunkers" and "stoagies") that used all of the letters on his rack, which earns a 50 point bonus. You can see how pleased I am with the outcome of this game, but had to concede -- it was a well-earned victory.

OK, last sketch. That's impatient me on the left, urging Peter to "go already!". If I remember correctly, it was the near the end of a game that Peter was clearly winning, and he was trying to figure out how to play the last two tiles on his rack. 


  1. They're really nice... lol... Keep them coming...

  2. Mike this is really funny. My favorite part is when you write "...amazing and disgusting at the same time," Um, yes, I would agree with that analysis. LOL



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