Thursday, October 13, 2011

Monkey Business

There is just no telling what is going to be on my mind when I wake up in the middle of the night. Often there are weighty, serious matters that are occupying my mental space. Believe me when I say that there are some pretty weighty, serious matters going on in the Counterman household right now. However, I'm thinking that what is jangling around in my head at this moment might not qualify as weighty or serious. Right now, there is just a lot of silliness and monkey business floating around up there. One of my blogger friends says, "sharing is what friends do," so here we are!


While I'm thinking about monkey business, let me share with you some management tips I heard a few years ago. I wish I could remember where I heard this, but I never wrote down the source. Just know that I am not claiming this as original.

Monkey Management
1. Do not take on the care and feeding of other people's monkeys. 
2. Do not let other people leave their monkeys in your office.

Monkey in this context refers to a problem or issue. However, at my job, there are also other kinds of monkeys. I have been known to slingshot a small, stuffed flying monkey (that screams loudly when launched) at my boss. Good thing he has a since of humor. 


The soundtrack for this bout of wee-hour wakefulness is "Put Down the Duckie", sung by Ernie (of Sesame Street) and friends. I heard this song for the first time in 1997 when my then-two-year-old niece had me listen to it over and over (interspersed with the Sesame Street version of the alphabet song). I don't actually recall hearing "Put Down the Duckie" since that fun-filled Christmas trip in 1997, yet it is playing loud in my mind. If you haven't heard the song, beware of this SPOILER ALERT:

Ernie does learn to put down Rubber Duckie so that he can use both of his hands to play the saxophone. It was a happy ending to a rocking song. Yea.


Denial. To the best of my knowledge, I am not currently in denial. But if I was in denial, how would I know? Dicey, isn't it? Anyway. A month or two ago while I was on the phone with our youngest son, I told him what denial meant. He laughed pretty hard and asked me to email the definition with him so he wouldn't forget. I don't know who first told me the definition of denial, but the information has served me well. I now pass it on to you:


Take notes, people. This will be on the test later.


Before bedtime, I was looking through some quotes, Bible verses, and whatnot that I had written down years ago (very interesting whatnot). I found a reference to a quote from Genesis 30 in there. Since I'm not going back to sleep anytime soon, it occurred to me that - thanks to technology and - I could figure out what the context of the quote was.

The verse was Genesis 30:27
 But Laban said to him, “If I have found favor in your eyes, please stay. I have learned by divination that the LORD has blessed me because of you.”
The background here is that Laban is Jacob's father-in-law. Jacob has been working for Laban almost since God created dirt [slight exaggeration] and he wants to go home. But Laban wants to keep being blessed by Jacob's presence and asks him to stay. What gets me about this verse is that Laban felt like he needed divination (a type of fortune telling or augury) to know that the Lord had blessed him since Jacob had been around. Wasn't it obvious already? Geez. Laban was slow on the uptake, I guess.

If you haven't read Genesis 30 in awhile, I highly recommend it, if for nothing other than its comedic qualities. It made me giggle (trying not to laugh heartily since Hubby is still asleep). The chapter strikes me as funny because of the way Leah and Rachel are having a baby-making contest. Rachel even trades Jacob's sexual favors to Leah in order to get a fertility-enhancing plant that Leah's son had given her. I wonder Jacob he felt like a boy-toy when Leah told him,
 “You must sleep with me,” she said. “I have hired you with my son’s mandrakes.”
Is it actually prostitution if the person you are "selling" your husband to is his other wife? The writing style of Genesis could be considered a little dry by today's standards, but if you read between the lines you realize that we have a full-blown Jerry Springer episode going on here. These woman have been pimping their husband to each other and even making him sleep with their maids. Imagine coming in from a long day working in the fields and not even being able to relax until you know what tent you have to go to because somebody made a deal while you were out. I don't know what Jacob was thinking, but I would hide if I was in the middle of that kind of estrogen-fest. 

Genesis 30 also has Jacob pulling one over on the father-in-law who won't let him go home, but it is the back-and-forth of the wannabe mommies that really gives it entertainment value. Don't ever let anyone tell you that the Bible is boring!


Other useless thoughts that are chasing each other in my head are movie quotes that I have seen or heard.

First there is Obi-wan Kenobi telling the Storm Trooper, "these are not the droids you are looking for". But they were the droids he was looking for! Don't you wonder if he ever figured it out? Do you feel dumb or awed when you realize you've been fooled by a Jedi mind trick?

Then there is the handy Monty Python quote, "Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!" But somebody had to have expected it! That craziness was too organized to be some kind of spontaneous torture party. Yet everyone uses the Monty Python quote as gospel. Come on, people! Any event planner worth their salt will tell you that it would have taken months just to pull off the color coordination for an affair that involved royal representatives. Everybody is just too chicken to tell Monty Python that he was wrong. 


The 5 a.m. alarm just went off, so I guess I had better wrap up this edition of Monkey Business. I would tell you when we were going to meet again for this type of fun, but I don't actually know when that will happen. You'll just have to stay tuned in!



  1. "To the best of my knowledge, I am not currently in denial. But if I was in denial, how would I know?" Ha Ha! You get real deep late at night. ;)

  2. @Amy I try, Amy. Really I do. If the alarm hadn't gone off I would have offered some thoughts on making your house "clean" vs. "family clean" vs. "company clean". (This matters because my mother-in-law is coming to visit!)

  3. CC...You need to get some rest. Seriously good stuff before first dawn! Wow.

    I love the idea of Monkey Business. Would you consider writing a longer post on that and I'll link up to it in the weekly High Calling newsletter which I edit. Drop me a note at rupzip at gmail )

  4. Love it. I laughed out loud, actually, that the teenager ventured out of her bedroom to see what the joke was. I let her read it and she lol'd, too! Thanks for this...I needed the levity. :)

  5. I so much needed that laugh! I have to check my managemment, I have some monkeys that I need give back to thier owners.


Thank you for joining me here.

Moral support, prayers, and witty comments always appreciated.