Monday, August 25, 2008

Child's Play

Awry. Askew. Off center. Unbalanced. This birdhouse is all of these, and so, sometimes, is my family.

Baby Sister came to visit us recently. She said she was going to be here on Wednesday night, and she didn't show up until Thursday at 9:00 p.m., only 24 hours late. Not too bad for Baby Sis, and not at all unusual.

Chesapeake Bay Son and Daughter love their aunt. On this particular occasion, CB Son was spending the night with a friend, so Daughter had Aunt all to herself.

They spent a lot of time down in my basement, which is a junked up Disaster Zone housing relics dating back to the Ice Age, but with a particular emphasis on the 1960's through the 1980's. There are old appliances, old clothes, old false teeth, old books, old furniture, old corpses, old This, old That, old crickets, old furnaces, and plenty of old toys. Toys that Chesapeake Bay Sisters and I played with as kids.

Baby Sis, being a prankster at heart, teamed up with Chesapeake Bay Daughter to pull a little stunt on me.

Imagine my surprise when, as I was walking bleary-eyed from the kitchen to my bedroom to go to sleep, I saw this leaning up against the front door:

Does anyone remember this guy?

He was part of a collection of figures made by Marx that evidently are now worth something (as in the set I used to have is going for hundreds of dollars), according to e-Bay.

There was a Johnny West, a Jane West, and Other Wests whose names escape me, and they had plastic horses named Thunderbolt and Flame or something like that, and saddles and bridles and cowboy hats. Well, the people had hats, not the horses, although it was always fun to shove a hat on a horse just to be weird. I was good at that.

This was Sam Cobra, even though for three days now I've called him Sam Spade (thank God for the internet). While I enjoyed playing with all the Very Nice Wests, there was always something attractive about old Sam, the outlaw. It was the whole Bad Boy thing, I am sure. He was strong, sinister, mysterious, devious, powerful and confident. Or at least that's how I made him in my little play scenes.

So because I hadn't seen old Sam Cobra in decades, and because Little Sister posed him in a very non-outlaw stance, which appears to be a disco move, which Sam Cobra would NEVER have done, Little Sis wins the prize for Great Prank of the Month.

If you think Baby Sis is unbalanced and twisted (and you may not, but I may), just wait until you see what Chesapeake Bay Woman can concoct as a counter-prank. Just wait.


Keeper Of All Things said...

Sam Cobra?!!!!
Are you sure?!
Pretty sure that
Tim McGraw with more hair!!!

Anonymous said...

Ummm...I don't remember us having Sam Cobra as kids. This is more likely a "doll" you bought in college. (??) We did have the entire West family, though. As I remember it...the Indian was mine. Or was that Tonto, from another doll set, the Lone Ranger's sidekick...?? Or was Tonto his horse? I was one of those characters in our dramatizations - the outcast of the core family. Ah, how our little fictions resembled real life. Or was I Josie West?? And what was her brother's name?

Middle Sis

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

Middle Sis - you were JOSIE West.

We did have the Lone Ranger and his horse Silver, and Tonto and his horse named Whatever, but that belonged to a different set. Yep, you were Tonto. Sorry about that.

I was always Sam Cobra, the mean one (refrain from comenting, please). And Joe WEst. And probably Jane West too. YOu were definitely Josie.

Yes, our fictitious play scenes did mimic real life...sorry. But that was my job as oldest sister, or at least I felt it was my duty.

Sorry again.

I did NOT buy Sam Cobra in college! Although if I had him, I could definitely have had hours of entertainment....even at this moment he is poised on my desk serving as my muse. I laugh everytime I look at him.

Keeper - He does look like McGraw.

Mental P Mama said...

Oh I remember all those. I think my Barbie and my PJ were married to them at some point. Hurry up with the counterprank. I need more laughs.

Anonymous said...

OK, I think sometimes I was Josie and sometimes you made me be the boy....whose name escapes me. Tonto's and his horse were both mine. I'd pay 50 cents to the first person who can remember his name. Patches? Sparky? Blaze? Bullet?? I guess I'll have to google it, too....

Anonymous said...

Well, Google says his name was Scout. That sounds vaguely familiar..... I would have called the Indian Scout and the horse Tonto.

Middle Sis

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

Middle Sis - I would have said Patches, because he was a paint (brown and white). I do remember making you be the boy sometimes.

Sorry again.
love and kisses, Mean Sis who is currently very nice.

Grandma J said...

I don't remember the West family or Sam Cobra, which must mean I'm male doll deprived.
When I first saw him standing by your door, I immediately thought it was Burt Reynolds when he had hair.

Karen Deborah said...

Your basement sounds like a lot of FUN!! What else you got down there? That is the downside of being a clean freak, no surprises.

MommyTime said...

I think you should harness the army of ants to help you organize that basement, and then you should auction the stuff on ebay and use the money to pay an exterminator. Nothing more sinister and twisted as a Prank than getting six-legged critters to be the authors of their own doom....

(yes, I still need more coffee today, sorry...)

Bear Naked said...

A little Canadian trivia.
Tonto's real name was Jay Silverheels and he was born at Six Nations reservation near Brantford, Ontario, Canada.
I used to live about 2 miles away from Six Nations.

Bear((( )))

Big Hair Envy said...

Sam Cobra/Tim McGraw/Burt Reynolds is pretty hot! Could I borrow him to serve as my muse when you are finished? I'll return him when I am finished. I can't afford to buy him on e-bay =D

Anonymous said...

Well I"m glad you enjoyed Sam's classic disco move. We also placed him in a yoga stance with one finger on your computer keyboard. We even used a rubber band to connect his arm and leg together. WE liked that one a lot.

To be 24 hours late really isn't that bad when you look at the big picture. In fact, it worked out better because your kids were not there the night before, remember??

Also, I've had better pranks before, funny how you didn't mention the fake plastic turds or hidden fart machines. Maybe you should take a picture of that?

Also, were they really named WEST or did we just call them that because we thought they were from GUINNEA?? (I'm not sure if that's how you spell it, but you say it GINNEY and it's past BENA, VA.)

And finally, yes there are MANY, MANY odd things in that basement of yours. If I didn't know any better, I would think Jeffrey Dahmer lived and "played" there once....bones, tape recorders, old teeth, fangs, old buckets of paint, barrels, etc..
Little Sis

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

Little Sis.

I did see Sam Cobra on my desk, but I never would have guessed that was a yoga stance. Looked like he was hog tied to me. I hate seeing an outlaw hog tied, it makes them seem seem so weak and helpless.

Right now, he's sitting very confidently, looking very manly and outlaw-ish on my desk.

Their real names were West, thank you very much, and none of them looked like they came from Guinea. Not that there's anything wrong with Guinea, for anybody out there that is. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the Guinea area of Gloucester, that's a topic for another day. Or perhaps, another blog.

3/4 of that stuff in the basement has been there since The Parents lived here (or Plymouth Rock, whichever came first), so we can blame Mamma Dahmer for all that.

Chesapeake Bay Son and Daughter want you to come back here really soon. Especially Daughter. When you do, leave my Sam Cobra alone.

Hugs and kisses. - Big Sis

tj said...

...Hi CBW! I'm sorry but that doll is just plain creepy. I thought, "what's she doin' with a Burt Reynold doll?"... Boy dolls always did creep me out for some reason. :o)

...You know you probably have a small fortune in that basement of yours. Get yourself on Ebay and you might be able to leave that payin' job of yours... ;o) I'm just sayin' know, if you wanted... lol...

...Btw, I did your tag and it's posted. And CBMom? Tag - you're it! ;o)

...Have a great day all and blessings too... :o)

Big Hair Envy said...

It's a good thing that dolls can't talk, because, IF he's from Guinea, you wouldn't be able to understand a word he was saying. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

I think THAT topic warrants more than one post. It may need to be password protected.

foolery said...

I was sure that was an updated version of G.I. Joe. He's all slim-hipped and willowy, unlike the G.I. Joe (who's most likely a sexual deviant and definitely a social outcast) in our current Barbie enclave.

As a bonus, it does not appear that Sam Cobra's feet look like paddles and can be spun 360 degrees on their Axii?

But does he have Kung Fu Grip? (TM)

Anonymous said...

What-EVER with Sam Cobra. Did you have a Derry Derring??? She was the female Evil Kenivel (sp?). Ooooh, yeaaaaah.

Rebeckah said...

I never heard of your doll, but I am SO excited to hear that you have dead bodies in your basement. I always knew there was something super cool about you : ). How can anyone not love someone with skeletons?

Anonymous said...

Oh, that's right, I forgot to tell you, we also were hiding a dead body in our basement for a while. We have this partially-excavated room, with these dirt mounds and a path shoveled out. The mounds are covered in plastic. When we bought the house, the seller had to put in a radon remediation system, hence the room's first nickname, the Radon Room.

However, we bought the house at about the same time as congressional intern Chandra Levy went missing in the summer of '01. The poor girl's body was later recovered from Rock Creek Park in DC, but she was missing for a good long while, and it was during this time that we began calling that room the Chandra Levy room. As in, no one would ever think to look there for her.

Macabre, isn't it?? Maybe not as humorous in writing as it is in person. GAH.

Diane @ Stoney Creek said...

I am so envious that you still have your West Dolls, I thought I was the only girl in the world to love those dolls and their horses. Baby dolls and barbies were thrown aside unless they had on western gear. Those cowboys and their horses were some of my best childhood memories. I did look online for some when my boys were into cowboys - but no luck. I'm calling China and have a couple million of them made - whose with me.

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

diane@stoney creek: I'M IN!!