I will share something here that I bore witness to that shocked even me – and I’m not one that’s easily shocked – so, as Sophia Petrillo said “Picture it: Fat Camp – Winter Season.

Besides the Fat Camp, my aunt also owned a diner and the Manager she had working there was this bumbling Frenchman George (Think Inspector Clouseau in a nicer suit) that made even my mostly good-intentioned, but half-retarded cousin, Lon, seem like a scientist. George and his wife, Maddie, used to come to the Fat Camp to torture (or visit, depending on who you ask) with us. I’m not sure how or why this was started, but it didn’t take long to realize that it wasn’t a good idea.

One day as we were hard at work (sitting by the pool drinking of course) they arrived. We had started out with intentions of painting the fence, but that quickly turned south when I brought out the alcohol. Truth be told, I never had any intentions of painting that fence and was drinking by the pool when they came up to paint it. One drink led to another and another and then they realized the fence could wait. As George and Maddie pulled into the driveway along with my aunt, they opened the car door and their two mini-Dobermans got out and followed my aunt and Maddie over to the pool while George went into the house.

As a pet owner, I’m always interested to see how other dogs act with their owners. My Shih-Tzu Smokey likes to be held on your lap and to have you pet him while driving in the car, but once you arrive wherever you’re going he can’t wait to see who else is around to play with and get away from me. One night when I was in college and Smokey was still a puppy, I got all up in his grill when we came back from the bar and was raising him into the air like Simba in The Lion King and then bring him face to face and I would slur “SSSS SSSS Smokey, SSSS SSSS Smokey, SSSS SSSS Smokey” until he finally had enough of my nonsense and bit down on the tip of my nose in retaliation. It might not have been so bad if he had just nipped and released to prove his point, but his pincers got caught in my nostrils. Every time I screamed out in pain he got scared and bit down harder and clamped onto my nose like it was a rawhide. I was running around screaming with this five pound dog biting down harder as he was glued to my face and it looked like he was T-bagging my nostril, but not one person helped me. Everyone just laughed their asses off. He could have bitten the tip of my nose off and swallowed it for all they cared. Smokey finally released but he left indentations in my nose on both sides where he chomped down – talk about a conversation starter, “When Shih-Tzu’s Attack!” (Not like the time when my father actually did get attacked by Marlene’s killer Shih-Tzu (Brutus) and had to get stitches in his face – at least I can blame my bite on drunken stupidity; He was sober. My father I mean – not Brutus).

So, as we made small talk with Maddie and offered them a drink, those two dogs fought for affection on her lap. As we were talking and I was just starting to really enjoy my Vodka, those dogs started pushing each other to try and get better placement. They’re very cute dogs, but it was odd because they never left Maddie’s side. Literally never. (Foreshadowing alert)

Next thing I know, here comes George strutting out of the house like a peacock in a bright blue Speedo. A fucking, bright blue Speedo. He was calling out in his little French accent “Allo, Allo” to everyone and then came over and full-body hugged my cousin, and then full-body hugged her boyfriend, and then came right at me arms outstretched. It was like slow motion and Thank God I have reflexes like a cat. I almost jumped over the fence as he tried to hug me and everyone looked at me like I was the crazy one when I put the bottle of Vodka as a buffer between us and offered him a drink. I jammed a cup into his open hand – anything to avoid contact with him and the little blue teacup he was wearing. He looked at me for a second, confused, and then proceeded to make his way around the table shaking everyone else’s hands. My aunt gave me a quizzical look that said “What’s wrong with you?”as if she couldn’t tell or didn’t see anything odd here. Right, I’m the crazy one – George just bump and grinded his bright blue Speedo against my teen-age cousin and then against her boyfriend and I’m the bad guy because I refuse to let him dry hump me next.

That situation wouldn’t have been OK even if George was in shape, if George wasn’t over fifty, or if George wasn’t wearing his knee length black dress socks and slip on black loafers with that Speedo, but for God sakes none of us were even swimming or wearing bathing suits. Who walks up to a group of fully clothed people wearing a bathing suit smaller than a do-rag and starts hugging them? It was a Fat Camp, not a swingers colony!

I gathered my friends and headed out to the local bar for the rest of the afternoon to try and burn that image out of my memory forever, and my aunt said to make sure I was back for our “Family Dinner” and then gave me a dirty looked when I asked her if there was going to be a dress code. George never did go swimming – he just hung out (literally) all day by the pool.  (As a side note, whenever questioned about George and Maddie saying or doing something weird, my aunt would always shrug and say “He’s French” or “She’s French, that’s what they do” as if that explained it.)

There were so many lunatics that I will tell you about at another time, but in the center of the assorted arsenal of players that worked at that camp was UFO Joe. We called him that because, obviously, his name was Joe. What wasn’t as obvious about him at first glance was that he had been abducted more than once. I’m not talking Liam Neeson’s daughter in Taken kind of abduction, I’m talking full-blown, alien poking, possibly impregnating, but definitely fucking-with abduction! (Please re-read that last sentence again and really see what I have had to overcome in my life. I am a neurotic putz with a host of my very own issues which I heartily admit, but I am constantly faced with fucking crazy people that make me seem like the normal one.) There is not enough room on the internet to capture all of UFO Joe’s exploits, but I promise to revisit his episodes at another time.  

Dinner went without incident and while her two dogs sat on Maddie’s lap the whole time she ate – Smokey and my aunt’s two Yorkies were suspiciously avoiding her like the plague. I thought it odd that they weren’t begging, but didn’t think too much about it because at that moment, our maid Happy (The African/Crazy/slothlike/sexy in a certain leather yellow moomoo-wearing kind of way) hit me with her breast as she leaned over me and started to clear the table. George went to smoke cigars with the “Men” so I went to smoke a fattie with the “Real Men” and try to burn the thought of Happy’s middle-aged, bra-less breast swinging against me (like a pendulum on a grandfather clock) out of my mind.

As I headed back to the Dining Room for cake to satisfy my munchies, my aunt and Happy were in the kitchen getting the coffee and dessert together. As I walked back into the Dining Room, only UFO Joe and Maddie (and of course the two dogs) were sitting at the table as everyone hadn’t come back in yet. I walked in on their conversation and sat down as I opened a fresh beer:

Maddie (in her French accent): It must be beautiful here in the fall when Zee trees drop Zee leaves…

UFO Joe: It is – Do you think you’ll come back when the weather changes?

Maddie (in her French accent):  It depends on Zese babies and what Zhey want to do…(she directed this comment at Zee dogs as she started nuzzling their noses against hers)

UFO Joe: Maddie, I meant to mention earlier that I can’t help but notice that you keep masturbating the dogs…

With this it was like slow motion as I spit my beer out all over the table and covered everything on it and after I picked my jaw up off the floor I looked at him, speechless, waiting for her to either slap his face or, God forbid, answer him…

Maddie (in her French accent): Oh, Zhat. (Like it was nothing!!!)  It’s all about ZEE pleasure Joe…I love Zee dogs and I want them to be happy…Zhey like it…

UFO Joe: I would too…

With that, I jumped up and ran out of the room like the mature adult that I am…I was first off looking for Smokey to keep him off her lap and the hell away from her (now I understood why he and my aunt’s two dogs were staying away from Maddie the Masturbator) and then I burst into the kitchen to find my aunt.

“Oh my God – Maddie is masturbating the dogs! Hello, she’s fucking masturbating the dogs!”

To which Happy responded (in her heavy African accent) – “At the table?”

My aunt put the stack of dessert plates she was carrying down on the counter and slowly turned glaring at me and growled at me: “You know what? You’re a very sick person – something is really very wrong with you? Why would a sixty year old woman masturbate her dogs?  

“Because she’s French? Remember, that’s what they do” I replied with the only answer that would possibly make sense. I thought it was a very clever comeback as it was her goto line about anything odd they did, but she found it as humorous as her last pap smear.

Before she could slap me or worse, UFO Joe entered the kitchen with some dirty plates and as he passed by, he matter-of-factly said “I knew she was jerking those dogs off. These eyes don’t lie. Lucky dogs, huh” he said as he bumped my shoulder and then headed back into the Dining Room. I then proceeded to help my aunt lift her jaw off the kitchen floor as Happy walked out of the room shaking her head and muttering to herself (in her heavy African accent) “At the table? I don’t understand.” A woman right off the boat from Africa understands what masturbating means, understands what masturbating dogs means, but the part that she found disturbing about that whole situation is that Maddie did it at the table? There must be some crazy shit going on in Africa!    

Needless to say I was not allowed to go back to the Dining Room table for dessert because the general consensus was that I wouldn’t be able to control myself (probably a good guess.) Forget about how I was gonna act – I was afraid to walk back into that room and see UFO Joe jump up on Maddie’s lap next!”  I went and locked Smokey in the back bedroom – at that point it was every dog for himself!!! Suspiciously enough, they never visited us again and I for one didn’t miss them. UFO Joe on the other hand was constantly hoping that they’d drop by again as that was the only party he’s ever attended when he wasn’t the craziest person on the guest list.

As a postscript, I am really disturbed. That statement could obviously describe my mental state most times, but it’s so odd.  That is the second instance where a person has admitted to me that they had masturbated their pet. Also, they both offered it up to me without provocation or instigation. I don’t know why they’re doing it or what it is about me that invokes feelings in these lunatics to share it with me, but if one more person tells me they’re getting their pets off – I’m making a citizen’s arrest right there! I see myself as a fun-loving guy with all sorts of crazy shit going on but people are getting a little too comfortable around me for my liking. This shit’s gotta stop.

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