Tag Archives: gripe

Camping: Your Solution to Making Sure Your Kids Don’t Live With You Forever

An excellent read about a varietal of gerbil and a technique for dealing with them. The GRIPE researchers will be conducting peer review of this intriguing field research.

Kevin Hellriegel's Blog of Worthless Advice

Right now your children might be young and you think (hopefully to yourself) that they’ll accomplish anything they set their mind to.  Or maybe your kids are teenagers and your neighbor told you that their child didn’t blossom until they were 27 or 28 years old thus giving you a little piece of hope.  Or maybe your kid is 20, has dropped out of community college for the third time (in three attempts), lives in your basement, plays Black Ops all day, and will look for a job “tomorrow” (after he has his kill streak up to 70).

I hate to be the bearer of bad news but…the hard sad fact is that most likely your kids are losers and will be living in your basement for the rest of their lives.  Oh sure, they’ll move out for a year or maybe two, but they’ll be back…or will they?


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The Big Uneasy Gerbil Truce

Scary, huh?

You might think that after the gerbil moves out the game is over. Not so. They are still plenty of opportunities for high-jinx, if you are diligent and know how to find them.

Some time may have elapsed since our last bit of gerbil coverage, but make no mistake. The little fellar is still out there.

To recap:

  • The ignominy of Sherlock Holmes’ greatest defeat, The Adventure of the Raspberry Bar. This remains open in the cold case files.
  • The Gerbil Research Institute for Parental Edification published the Gerbil Nutritional Pyramid.
  • The gerbil still has absolutely no idea how or why the blinds in his old room spontaneously were destroyed. (Broken in half.) And absolutely no explanation why coins were found on the ground outside under the room’s window. After the discovery of new elements on the periodic table this is probably one of the great mysteries of modern science. Personally I think they’ll find the blinds were broken by an element with 255 neutrons which I have dubbed Gerbilenium.

There was a period of time where the gerbil disappeared and we thought that our bout of False Empty Nest Syndrome (FENS) woes were finally over, but it was a false alarm. The case has merely shifted to an intermittent condition.

In non-technical jargon, it settled down into an uneasy truce with the occasional flare up.
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Fall Into Foul Blogs

Perchance I shall hawk Chevy Trucks anon, because my blog is steady as a rock.

Nay! That is not a good thing. Forsooth, a curse lies upon this keyboard, methinks.

There are, perhaps, more blog posts about how to blog effectively than there are American dollars comprising the U.S. deficit. I had come across several of these way back in the beginning and learned that if one wanted to grow a blog, a recommended tactic was updating your blog on a regular schedule.
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March of the Gerbils

Hi! Remember me?

That chittering sound can only mean one thing…

He’s baaaaaaaack!

And now, the top stories from the gerbil desk. (For those new to this blog, please check in at the G.R.I.P.E. Headquarters to pick up your visitor badge.)

First, the case of the missing car keys. The spare key to my wife’s car has been missing for eons. The gerbil, of course, took the blame. The other day I hopped in my car and a knob had fallen off the radio. When I got home I checked under the seat and found that pesky knob. I also found the missing car keys!

This is an odd sensation. The gerbil was falsely accused.

“That’s one for you, Gerbil!” I shouted to no one in particular. Back to you, Tom.

Thanks, Tom. In light of all the negativity in the world today, we try to bring our viewers feel good news when we can. It’s nice to start off the broadcast on the right foot.

Now, on to darker news…

We know where the gerbil lives, but he fiercely prevents us from visiting. We are allowed as near as the end of the driveway – no farther! We originally suspected a commune with a slightly eccentric couple who owns the property. But now we suspect the urge for privacy is drug related. One piece of recent evidence that points in that direction – The gerbil recently updated his Facebook page and prominently featured pictures of a “bud” of marijuana. Rather than completing school and/or getting a job, the gerbil has apparently chosen the path of worshiping a plant, which, at least for now, is still illegal in this country. Good luck with that, gerbil!

Last, but not least, we bring you news from the world of camping. My wife and I recently roughed it in the woods relying only our wits for survival. Well, our wits and our camping gear. My wife was quite alarmed when she dug into the gear and found that some items were missing. All of the steak knives were gone and there was only one fork. The prevailing theory? The gerbil needed some utensils when he moved out, so he did what comes naturally – steal from those who were there for him the most. Classy.

So, while out camping recently, my wife and I had the opportunity to experience extra intimacy and closeness by sharing a single fork for four days. Thanks, gerbil! Fork you very much.

Gerbil Games: The Re-Nesting

Our house had a visitor recently…

Yes, the gerbil stopped by. After months of no contact my wife was able to arrange some time together with our son. We were atwitter with nervous anticipation. Would he actually show?

The day of the meeting we spotted gerbil spore. A tweet from the gerbil! The meeting was on. It looked like it would actually happen.

In typical gerbil style he didn’t come to our house and she couldn’t pick him up at wherever he might currently be living, either, since that place is totally unknown to us. No, he wanted to be picked up at the local Walgreens. Gerbils are quite fond of comings and goings in public settings.

The plan was that my wife would take him into a nearby town for dinner and shopping. She had to get a present for our grandson’s 2nd birthday.

The evening went well and my wife had a good time with our son. She did say, however, that when she first picked him up, she almost got a “contact high” from the stench of marijuana that emanated from his person. Ugh. He’s still classy as ever, I see. We did note, however, some baby steps towards civilization. The nose ring and gauged ear lobe thingies were gone.

After the evening was done, she brought him back to the house to use our computer and, little surprise, I was told he’d be spending the night. On our sofa. Just like the good old days. The gerbil was back in the nest.

In the morning, after my wife went to work, it was just me and the gerbil. He slept in to the last possible moment. He finally woke up when it was getting time for me to go to work. It was a bit awkward between us. He grabbed a quick shower then it was time for us to go.

Since the gerbil is no longer trusted with a key to our house, he had to leave when I left, or he’d have no way to lock up the house.

I asked him if I could drop him off anywhere. He said no and elaborated on some complex gerbil plans.

So it was that I drove off to work and saw the gerbil walking away up the street.

Now, get this. I don’t believe in premonitions or instinct or feelings or what not. But as I approached the stop sign at the outer edge of our subdivision, a little voice was yelping in my mind.

“Go back,” it yelped. “Go back and made sure he didn’t leave that side door to the garage unlocked.” I checked my watch. I just had enough time.

So I did a u-turn and swung back around to the house. I couldn’t help but note that as I did so the gerbil had reversed his course and was walking back towards our house. In fact, he seemed mighty surprised to see me.

He stopped, shuffled around comically for ten seconds, as if deciding what to do, then headed off in a whole new direction as if that’s what he had been planning the whole time. Yeah, right. I just sat there and watched.


The gerbil safely out of sight I ran into the house and headed directly to the side door of the garage.

It was unlocked!

And that’s the way that cookie crumbles. This may be the end of this particular chapter but hang on, folks. I’m sure I’ll have more for ya real soon.

(click here for audio track for these lyrics)

Little hellion, kid’s feelin’ rebellious
Checking to see if he can pass our smell test
Pushing us until we feel helpless
’til someone comes along on a mission and yells BITCH!!!
I’m a visionary, had a vision of scary
Could start a renunciation, pollutin’ his brainwaves
Forcing responsibility upon him as an unpleasant task
If it doesn’t work he be kissin my ass *smak*
And it’s a disaster, such a catastrophe
For you to see seem damn gerbil you ask of me?
Well he’s back, na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na
*bzzt* Lock your doors and get your keys
He’s entering in, endin’ up in house like a splinter
The center of attention, back for the winter
It’s interesting, teaching him – my failed questing
Infesting our home he’s back in and nesting
*bzzt* Testing, attention please
Feel the tension, soon as someone mentions he
Here’s my ten cents, my two cents is free
A nuisance, you sent? You sent to me?

Three blind gerbils

Gerbil nutritional pyramid. Take and bake pizza information was not available by our publication deadline.

Not every gerbil path is exactly the same. For example, most drop out of high school but some actually hang tough and barely graduate. Either way, though, the paths taken can still have remarkable similarities.

Most live at home as long as possible. Most avoid jobs, effort and all forms of responsibility like the plague. Most get into things like drugs, smoking, energy drinks (Monster, Red Bull) and expensive coffee stand drinks as quickly and as deeply as possible. Most are extremely poor, becoming adept moochers, yet still maintaining the most expensive of tastes. Some rely solely on mooching skills, others may turn to petty theft and crimes to maintain their standards of living.

In terms of avoiding jobs, most gerbils go one step further and begin customizing their appearance. Things like tattoos, tongue piercings, lip piercings, ear piercings, ear lobe gauging, bizarre facial hair, nose rings, and long dirty unkempt hair are routine. Strange clothing completes the ensemble. Not wanting to be limited to the dimension of sight only, most smell bad as well.

The net result is a life form that it almost unemployable in every way shape or form.

I’ve covered most of this before, however. This is really nothing new.

Our GRIPE scientists recently made another startling breakthrough in measuring gerbil behavior. Within a single herd they successfully identified three males sharing a surprising characteristic: They have all applied and been approved to receive food stamps!

The GRIPE scientists wanted me to pass along a message regarding this finding: “We are not shitting you.”

Details are still sketchy, more field research is needed, but here’s what we know so far.

Three gerbils, including our own son and two of his herd, have applied for and received food stamps. Yes, they’ve had a rough life and need help from a system they’ve never fucking paid into. Dropping out of work, avoiding your GED, refusing to look for a job, and turning your physical being into a fashion accessory is hard work.

So these three lazy 21-year-old assholes who have underachieved, dropped out, and never really held down a job are all pulling in food stamps.  The food stamp money can even be used to pay for their “take and bake” pizzas!

Oh … my … God. What does a motherfucker living at home still need food stamps for???

I think the pyramid produced by our GRIPE staff sums it up nicely. Pot, smoking and drugs all come first. Then non-nutritional edibles like candy, expensive coffee drinks and the primary nutritional source for gerbils: lots and lots of Monster and Red Bull energy drinks.

If you have no job, live at home, have a medical marijuana card and are on food stamps, nothing less than $4 coffee drinks will suffice. Obviously.

–Tom B. Taker

It’s obvious why their is a need for food stamps. They do actually use the food stamps to buy some groceries, thus they are able to divert the remainder of their cash money to the things they really want that are really useless. The other day the gerbil stopped by and tried to borrow money from us because, he said, he only had 43 cents to his name. Yet he is never without his expensive smokes. Funny how that works.

Really, I want to know. What, if anything, are we teaching the youth of this generation and how in any way, shape or form are they being prepared to deal with the real world? I fear for them.

Gerbil a go-go

All good things must come to an end. That is the way of things, even with gerbils.

On the surface things may seem to be unusually quiet here at G.R.I.P.E. HQ. After all, it has been some time since our last update. Outwardly all may appear to be proceeding swimmingly, but for those of us here living inside the eye of the storm I can now report that all is not well. There has been a spate of activity and sadly none of it has brought us any closer to finding a cure for FENS (False Empty Nest Syndrome).

A lot has happened since the last update and most of it, for now, must remain unreported. Perhaps the day will come when all can be told, but perhaps not.

The ending of which I speak is the major event that we refer to as the gerbil’s moving out day. All creatures big and small must make their own way in the universe and it is no different for the modern suburban gerbil. Eventually that day must come.

You might think that “moving out” would seriously alleviate the major symptoms of FENS and perhaps even go a long ways towards a permanent cure. Normally that would be a valid conclusion. But where gerbils are involved one must remain ever vigilant and remember to never underestimate the incredible range of gerbil behaviors.

Perhaps an anecdotal accounting will help illustrate:

After an escalating series of frustrating events involving the gerbil, most of which must remain unreported at this time, the gauntlet was finally thrown down.

The gerbil was kicked out of the nest and given a deadline one week in the future.

The week elapsed with no noticeable change in behavior. We could feel the week was building toward something but if the gerbil felt it too he gave no sign. As far as we could tell absolutely no preparations were made. No packing, no organizing, nothing at all even remotely visible to the naked eye.

Finally the big day arrived. I was overflowing with scientific curiosity. What was about to happen? How would events unfold? Myriads of possible scenarios went through my mind.

I have to admit what happened was unexpected and took me by surprise.

In a stark reversal of the normal pattern, the gerbil woke up early and cooked himself a meal. In another unusual move, the gerbil didn’t immediately leave the home. He simply lounged around the house all day. At lunch the meal cooking was repeated, then again at dinner. It was almost as if the gerbil was trying to pack away as much of our food as he could, perhaps as a going away present to himself, before hitting the road.

After dinner we kept waiting for some movement from the gerbil. We waited an hour. Then another. Then another still. Nothing ever happened. Finally we went to bed.

We didn’t know what the morning might bring. Would the gerbil persist? Would he skulk away under cover of darkness? An odd silence permeated our home as we tucked ourselves in and drifted off to sleep.

To be continued …