5 for Friday: Go Ask Daddy About J-Law, Beach Water and Getting a Shark to Say “Cheese”

photo credit: Si-MOCs via photopin cc
photo credit: Si-MOCs via photopin cc

Dads do hard work.

GAD GRAPHICWe have to open pickle jars.

Eat pizza crusts. And rejected pepperoni.

Take kids to baseball games. And buy ice cream in baseball hats.

Coach soccer teams and chaperone field trips to museums.

Partake in post-game snacks and post-season pizza parties.

Snuggle on the couch to watch Indiana Jones movies.

Explain rules during football games. And baseball games. And why we hate the raiders.

Say “yes” to a little snick-snack at the grocery store.

And … research Go Ask Daddy questions. Like the first one this week.

Someone’s got to do it …

1. What other movies is Jennifer Lawrence in?


J-Law’s signature role, of course, is as Katniss Everdeen in Hunger Games. But other movies, such as Winter’s Bone, for which she learned to chop wood, fight, and skin squirrels, likely prepared her to become Katniss.

And to handle awkward male fans twice her age.

She was also in The Devil You Know, Silver Linings Playbook and House at the End of the Street, after which I had recurring nightmares. And by nightmares, I mean dreams about her character scampering through the forest in jeans and a white tank top.

Next question.

2. Do worms have hearts?

photo credit: Nomadic Lass via photopin cc
photo credit: Nomadic Lass via photopin cc

Focus, Eli.

Worms do not have hearts in the sense that we humans do. In fact, a worm is shaped like a section of intestine, because it basically is an intestine, with a mouth on one end and a pooper on the other. Worms have two aortic arches rings that pump blood back and forth around the digestive apparatus that make up the vast majority of the worm. But we wouldn’t call it a heart, in the true sense.

Worms do not observe St. Patrick’s Day or get teary when they hear the National Anthem.

3. How does the water at the beach stay so clear?

ocean water
photo credit: Waves via photopin (license)

After a lifetime of visits Myrtle Beach and the Charleston area beaches, wrought with murky waters and angry jellyfish, you finally got to visit a beach, Grace, where you could stand in the water and see your toes.

Without dipping a beaker into the waves to test it, my guess is that there’s less algae and plankton at Topsail than some beaches. Pollution plays a role, too. Pure water is perfectly clear; ocean water isn’t pure, but the less stuff it has floating in it, the better clarity it will have when you look at your toes.

I’d prefer to believe in this theory than consider sharks, whales and ocean-swimming families are dirtier in Charleston and Myrtle Beach than in Topsail, mostly because I’ve had my mouth open when I swam in those places.

4. Why are softballs bigger than baseballs?

photo credit: Day 136/365 via photopin (license)
photo credit: Day 136/365 via photopin (license)

Because, Jennifer Lawrence.

Actually, because softball players participate in far-off tournaments an average of once every 17 minutes, the balls they use are swollen from constant battering by expensive aluminum bats.

NO REALLY, softball diamonds are several feet smaller than baseball fields. If softball players hit the smaller, harder baseball on the smaller diamond they play on, can you imagine how dangerous it would be? Softball players would be toothless gum-chummers with bruises upon bruises upon bruises.

And not even worms deserve that.

5. How do they take up-close pictures of sharks?

photo credit: Shark Cage Diving in Hermanus via photopin (license)
photo credit: Shark Cage Diving in Hermanus via photopin (license)


Because strapping a camera to the arse of a yummy seal proved costly and provided gruesome footage, nature biographers took to using underwater cameras they hold out in front of them. Discovery Channel used an $18,000 camera for the most recent Shark Week, a high-tech model they call the Phantom HD Gold – and which some sharks refer to as “crunchy appetizer for human flank steak.”

No thanks. I’d rather be gummed to death by softball players using the wrong ball, or slowly digested by overzealous worms. Because a dad has to draw the line somewhere.

I wouldn’t film these sharks for anything.

Not even an armload of Jennifer Lawrence’s pizza crusts.

sharks quote


  1. Tamara says:

    Silver Linings Playbook made me fall in love with Jennifer Lawrence. (They call her J-Law, but I can’t bring myself to do it)
    True story – Once at my dad’s softball game a stray ball popped me right on the head. I was stunned silent. The whole game stopped as my dad and all of his players, and even the players on the rival team, ran to the stands to see if I was ok. I was ok. Know why? Softball. Soft. Ball.
    I have my Pandora playing “Nightswimming” by R.E.M. at the same time as your Jennifer Lawrence (NOT J-Law) video and she just said “anal leakage” and it doesn’t go well with the song. Who knew?
    I think I’ve hit the maximum number of characters in your comment box by now, right?

    1. I still haven’t seen Silver Linings. Is that bad?

      And calling her J-Law makes it feel like she plays on one of my soccer teams.

      Those who know you might point to that softball incident in your childhood as the explanation for a great many things today.

      I’d think in most situations, Jen (that’s what I’ll call her) and R.E.M. would be a splendid match, on the order of animal crackers and root beer (not of steak and steak fries – that’d be more like symphony music and Jen.)

      I wonder if “anal leakage” will show up as a search term now.

      You were well within the character limit of the text box, so aim for 150 more characters next time and let’s see what this puppy can do.

  2. Teri says:

    J-Law > Ke$ha anytime. Anywhere. The end.

    I love that girl.

    1. You’re right, you’re right. But I just can’t quit Ke$ha.

      I love J-Law’s interviews …

  3. laurie27wsmith says:

    A camera strapped to a seal’s arse, man that’s priceless. Then I thought about J Law’s and……..well it’s a family show. Good one Eli.

    1. Plus, I just like to use the word arse whenever possible. You behave down there and don’t make me have to fight for J-Law’s honor. Peace, mate.

      1. laurie27wsmith says:

        It has such a direct Anglo-Saxon feel about, very descriptive and can be used on many occasions. I’m behaving Eli, no bloody choice at the moment. Cheers Mate.

      2. Marie had a toy turtle named Arse once. How much are we behaving if we’re having a conversation on comments about the word “arse” that spans two hemispheres, friend?

        I wouldn’t have it any other way.

      3. laurie27wsmith says:

        Well Eli, we could be talking about Fanny’s and the difference between them in Oz and over there. Just thinking about the turtle, hmm: ‘Get your slow arse over here.’ ‘What’s that green stuff growing on your arse?’ Oh I could go on. Nothing like a little misbehaving Mate, me neither. Oh, ‘Is that lettuce hanging out of your arse?’

      4. So this post will be a hit with Google spiders, with all the “arse” and “anal leakage” references. Oh, and Jennifer Lawrence.

        She’ll save us.

      5. laurie27wsmith says:

        Okay, we’ll wait for Jennifer then.

  4. Love Jennifer Lawrence and love all of your answers! And, seriously, how crazy do you have to be to film a Great White?!

    1. I wonder if Jennifer Lawrence loves my answers. I’m going to say yes.

      I just generally like to keep away from animals that I’d look eye-to-eye with on the food chain … that’s a good guideline, isn’t it?

  5. That poor seal. I can’t get that out of my head now. I am terrified of sharks. Even waved my family out of the water once. Well actually not waved. Screamed. I think it was a shark. Apparently others did too, because a man with a whistle saw it too. And so did the guy standing next to me.

    1. Sorry about that. It’s not a real seal, it’s made of … soy. Sharks just generally suck, unless there’s a foot of aquarium glass between him and me.

      What was it, then? A kid with a fin hat swimming below the surface? I’ve definitely high-tailed it out of the ocean when I saw a bunch of dolphins.

      Stupid things. Scared the heck out of me.

  6. You would not catch me anywhere near a shark. Not even in one of those cages – those things look far too fragile to me.

    1. Yet, youtube is stocked with video of people waist-high in the ocean FEEDING BULL SHARKS. One of us needs to write a post about this madness.

      Sharks probably see shark cages the way we do the box a Big Mac comes in.

  7. Kim says:

    I hope this is a weekly feature – your post made me laugh which is a much needed release these days!!! I think #4 was my favorite just because of your reference to Jennifer Lawrence – it struck me as funny!! Worms – who knew, but I’m not sure I ever thought about it and I used to teach science and know “stuff!”

    1. It had been a weekly feature I stupidly gave up, but have seen the error of my ways, and revived. I thought I was doing well to have not thought about Jennifer Lawrence again until No. 4, and then the spirit just moved me.

      Did you know the study of worms is known as “helminthology”? Now you do.

  8. Ilene Evans says:

    I’m glad you explained the clear versus murky water mystery for me. I’m swimming in some murky waters here, for sure – which may be a good thing – since the water is so cloudy, I can’t see all of the sharks that are around. I’ve had more than one brush with a sand shark since moving here. Perhaps I should strap a camera to myself next time I’m in the water.

    Moms do hard work too you know. Buying the ice cream in the baseball caps? A killer. And eating the pizza crusts? My kids have to BEG me to do that, but I’d never want to let them down.

    1. The kids don’t believe me when I tell them about azure blue waters and white sands of Panhandle Florida and Punta Cana, Dominican Republic.

      Between the jellyfish and sharks in Carolina, it’s like playing a video game each time you go for a dip. At Topsail, one of the nation’s top 5 shark beaches, a woman told us her son saw a ray.

      And I’m not talking Ray Lewis or Ray Allen. So instead of strapping a camera on your arse, I’d suggest a torpedo launcher.

      Moms can ice cream with the best of them. And studies show that even parental koalas and sea turtles eat the pizza crusts of their young.

      Moms *and* dads.

  9. Dana says:

    I now have a girl crush on Jennifer Lawrence. Seriously, if I were a young hot actress I like to think that I would be just like her. Not that I’ve ever said anal leakage or anything ( I read your other comments and thought I’d help you get to the top spot when someone googles that anal leakage). Oops I said it again. Oh – and the worms and sharks and softballs were interesting too.

    1. I’ve converted another. I’m pretty sure my car and sore ankle also have crushes on her. Thing is, with that personality and candor, she could be as ugly as me and still be hot.

      So, Google’s bots have warned me about anal leakage and have alerted the NSA. I believe they’re going to interrogate Jen and me in a pizza parlor.

      I hope they’ll consider the helpful tips on shark shooting and worm advocacy I also represent.

  10. The worms in Ireland celebrate St. Pat’s Day…they also snuggle on the couch to watch Indiana Jones…or so I’ve been told…

    1. Aye, the little buggers. If a worm snuggles to watch Indiana Jones, then at least we’ll know which end is the face and which is the arse.

  11. My husband has told me and my kids so many scary facts about sharks that we are all a little bit paranoid. By 5 pm we are RUNNING out of the water in fear that they are going to come out at dusk!

    1. It helps to remember that some sharks are actually tasty. It helps with that internal trash-talk dialog when you share water with them to think, “How sophisticated are *you*? At least we season and grill you before eating.”

  12. The J-Law nightmare made me laugh. And that video of the great white…whoa. Those things are scary. My 7yo was really into sharks/whales for a while so we learned a lot about those creatures. It amazes me how big great whites can get – I think I read up to 35 feet – freaking A, that’s scary!

    1. It made me smile. That’s why I have to look at the J-Law video after I see that great white one. Great white shark and great white actress are two entirely different things. I think every kid goes through a shark phase – I remember having a Jaws T-shirt that my mom made with an iron-on I got out of a box of Alphabets.

      I wish sharks ate Alphabets and not people.

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