Go Ask Daddy About Scrap Heaps, Clocks and Itchiness


Sometimes, a dude just has to switch girls.

The miles just catch up with a girl. It’s not her fault. It’s not like we don’t appreciate the miles and months and memories we spent together. You reach a comfort level. It’s hard to know where you end and she begins.

You meld together, learn each other’s idiosyncrasies. You’ve taken care of her. She’s taken care of you. You keep her in the style she’s accustomed to. You invest in her. You know how she feels, how she handles the curves of life.

She keeps you safe and sound.

But if something goes wrong with her, a guy must make that tough decision: Time to trade her in for a newer model? If she’s too far gone, no one else will want her. It’s time to sell her for scrap.

Something beautiful can come of this, though.

In this case, I would never have been able to get my Gabi. She’s white, by the way. She’s also a Pontiac Grand-Am. 2003. Without the money I’d gotten for her predecessor – an unnamed Grand-Am, this one maroon – I’d never have my Gabi.

The car Gabi replaced was on the girls’ minds for this week’s round of Go Ask Daddy questions.

1.     Did we donate your old car to the junk cars?

photo credit: Amelien (Fr) via photopin cc
photo credit: Amelien (Fr) via photopin cc

That would have been a noble finish, wouldn’t it?

How cool would it be if, when the holy Lord calls Gabi back to that great open highway in the sky, I could donate her? The official NPR tow truck can come pick her up. Click and Clack could fix her up and resell her. NPR could cash in to fund the stellar work of Kate Davidson, Sally Herships, and Lizzie O’Leary.

But, no. Instead, we sold Gabi’s older sister, who got melted down. I got about $400 in the deal.

That gave me money to put toward Gabi.

The circle of life applies to automobiles, too.

2.     Do you have to be a certain age to get a restraining order?

photo credit: stonelucifer via photopin cc
photo credit: stonelucifer via photopin cc

What kind of stuff are they showing on Disney Channel these days?

According to the Family Violence Law Center website, the minimum age is 12 to get a restraining order. It’s a court order meant to protect you from abuse, harassment, stalking or threats. They’re meant for family or someone close to you. The person cited has to stay at least 100 yards from you.

This one’s not even the right place to be clever. Here’s hoping you never, ever must take one out.

Dad might be short and unarmed, but … he’s fierce when it comes to his girls.

3.     Why are there different time zones?

photo credit: JanetandPhil via photopin cc
photo credit: JanetandPhil via photopin cc

Time zones are part of a conspiracy to keep kids from watching playoff baseball or Monday Night Football on a school night.

Back in the day, before Pontiacs were even invented, people set their clocks based on the sun and stars. This was well before we drew lines on the globe to keep the world order tidy. How tidy? Consider that there are exactly 24 regions longitudinal lines split up on the globe, and 24 hours in a day.

Mind … blown.

These longitudinal splits are each 15 degrees wide. Time zones begin and end at the Greenwich Meridian. This line runs right through Greenwich, England.  Each time zone is an hour apart, which makes it possible for it to be sunrise in San Antonio and lunch time in Sable Island, Canada, all at once.

Let’s not even get started on Daylight Savings Time.

4.     If a team on defense catches the ball in the end zone, is it a touchdown?

photo credit: situnek34 via photopin cc
photo credit: situnek34 via photopin cc

Let’s say the San Francisco 49ers drive deep into New York Jets’ territory. Jets fans scream and holler for their defense, even with a 96.6% probability San Francisco’s going to score. But let’s say Colin Kaepernick throws off his back foot, and Jets safety Jawan Landry intercepts the pass in the end zone.

Landry falls to the ground, and 49ers wide receiver Michael Crabtree touches him down.

It’s New York’s ball on its 20 yard line.

You can score only in the opponent’s end zone, not your own. Scoring in your own end zone would be like liking your own Facebook post or following your own blog. Anyway, there’s a 47.3% chance the Jets are just going to punt it back in three plays. And a 33.7% chance they’ll throw an interception right back.

5.     If something non-living touches poison ivy, then you touch it, will you get poison ivy?

photo credit: pullip_junk via photopin cc
photo credit: pullip_junk via photopin cc

And you thought being a Jets fan makes you itchy.

You don’t have to chase your golf disc into the weeds or pick the wrong leaf to wipe with on a camping trip to feel the anger of poison ivy. The itch is an allergic reaction to the oil of a plant called urushiol. This nasty juice can stay potent for a long time, on just about any surface.

Gardening tools, gloves, and soccer balls can carry the oil. Bikes, shin guards, and trombones. Pontiac bumpers, Jets jerseys, and restraining order papers can. Watches, potato chips, prison forks.

Diplomas, fishing licenses, May the Force Be With You boxer shorts, debit cards, and blue jeans can carry the juice.

You can even catch it from Colin Kaepernick.

Even if he throws into double coverage.

poison ivy quote


  1. Lisa @ The Meaning of Me says:

    Yes, please let’s not get started on DST – I do not like the universe (or whatever genius’ fault it is) messing with my sleep time. And you don’t even want to know how it messes up my cats. Well, maybe you do because it’s pretty funny.
    Glad you cleared up the one about poison ivy- never did know the answer to that one!

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Daylight Savings Time is like having a cavity filled, I think (I’ve never had one). A necessary evil? My cats do nothing but eat, sleep, poop, and ruin furniture, and it doesn’t seem to bother them what time of day it happens.

      The poison ivy answer is my public service announcement – better than field study, right?

  2. Lyn says:

    My Hugo (surname Accent, middle name Hyundai) is getting along in years. We’ve been together 14 years now, and he’s been so, so faithful. I take good care of him and make sure he gets a check up at the doctor every three months. He’s had to have some minor surgery three times in the last four months and that set me back around $800. Still, I suppose after 14 years, that’s not too bad. I hope we’ll be together for at least another five years 😀

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Sounds like it’s great match, Lyn. It’s that reciprocation that makes it work. But we always get stuck with the surgery bills, don’t we?

      I propose a toast: To Lyn, and Hugo. And many, many happy miles.

      Here, here.

  3. laurie27wsmith says:

    It appears you have lost nothing in the way of spirited answers to life’s greatest questions Mate. Ah, I’ve sent a few cars off to that junkyard in the sky over the last 43 years. Thankfully I now have a new car, I trade up every two years and they become someone else’s problems. The bliss! We have plants in our rainforests that if the hairs on the leaves touch you it’s so maddening you wish that the ‘wait awhile’ plant had its hooks in you. There’s always someone worse off. It’s great to be back here old son, great.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:


      Look what the wallaby dragged in, Sheila.

      You’re quite the car gigolo there, mate. It’s the way to go, though. In my state, I must ride with my lady until she can run no more. Or until I can’t.

      Her parts are worth more than mine, I suspect.

      Wait, what’s the wait awhile plant? Is there a post somewhere on your blog about this?

      So glad to see you back here, my brother. So good.

      1. laurie27wsmith says:

        Dragged in kicking and screaming Mate but glad to be here. I’ve been in that state for years and drove them into the ground. It’s just nice to be able to have a new one, between me and the bank. Worth more than the sum of her parts.
        It’s a large leaf plant that is quite prolific in rainforests. It’s a tree whose branches hang low and the underside of these leaves are covered in tiny hooks. When you brush past them the hooks latch onto your skin and clothing. So you have to wait awhile to unsnag yourself. Believe me Mate, it’s great to be here.

      2. Eli Pacheco says:

        Crikey mate – imagine if you wiped with a leaf like that.

      3. laurie27wsmith says:

        It would be encouraging for those in training for the 400 metre sprint mate. Yikes!

    2. Hey, Laurie is back! Hi 🙂

      1. laurie27wsmith says:

        Hi there Tamara, great to see you.

      2. Eli Pacheco says:

        Pretty sure we should have played “Enter Sandman” for him.

  4. ksbeth says:

    I’m sorry for you loss, but like you, my grand am, el diablo rojo, moved on. From my garage this year. Looking back was it harder to get rid of the grand am or the poison ivy?

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      nothing lasts forever – except for poison ivy itches, apparently. they’re far greater a tough out than a grand am. hey, someday, a grand am will be collectible.

  5. I actually learned something new about poison ivy this past summer and that is a dog can’t get it, but they can have the oils on their coat and therefore someone who pets them can get it. Yes sadly I had to pay a vet bill for the dog and a copay for Kevin who got it this way this past summer. Never dull around these parts!

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      I saw that too! Lucky … dog.

      Hey, did you ever blog about your itchy adventure?

      1. I actually never really did. What was i thinking?!

  6. NotAPunkRocker says:

    Whenever I read about your Grand Am, I miss my Grand Prix.

    For a minute or two. Then I get over it.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      They say once you go Pontiac, you never go back.

      Unless they stop making them, which they did.

  7. Wow… I don’t think I’ve learned so much within 5 minutes…. ever… and in the morning no less 😉

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      It’s the stuff you never knew you never knew. Trust me – I have enough of my kids’ questions in the bank to fuel 55 Go Ask Daddy Fridays.

      I think the morning is supposed to be the best time for things like this.

      1. Very true Disney Pocahontas!!

      2. Eli Pacheco says:

        Oh man. I didn’t even mean to do that.

      3. Scary what our kids… and Disney. .. do to us!

      4. Eli Pacheco says:

        The combination is ridiculous.

  8. So do the girls ask the questions in this order? Or do you cherry pick when you answer them? Grinning here over the lumping together of trombones, potato chips and prison forks. Especially the prison forks.
    Speaking of restraining orders – I’ve got a beaut for you. A fellow swimming mom had to get one against a swimming dad. Not her husband but a dad who got more than upset over a punch. His son hit another boy (not this swimming mom’s kid. Still with me?) and the dad cheered his son on for doing so. She called him on it (the dad) and he lashed out with vicious verbal threats against her. This exchange took place at the back of the pool in semi private. She was scared and marched right to local police station. The guy went on to perform a series of similar bullying antics on others – including kids. He died of a massive heart attack a few years later. Karma.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      I use the site random.com, enter the total number of questions in the list (right now its about 280 strong), and answer those chosen at random.

      It has made for some interesting combinations.

      I tried to cover everything under the sun in that list, but thought trombones and prison forks should be there.

      What.a.story. It seriously could be one of those After School Specials, if After School Specials were allowed to have real-life endings. I guess a bully is a bully until his dying day.

  9. In my time zone it’s bed time, so maybe I am too tired to properly read… But did you just say Gabi has to go?

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      No no … Gabi’s here to stay. She’s running strong. The girls had asked about the ginger car that came before her.

  10. Letizia says:

    I just sold my old Prius and bought a new red mini. I love my new car but walking away from the Prius pulled at my heart a bit….

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      The old cars become part of us, Letizia. But you in a red mini … what a sight.

      1. Eli Pacheco says:

        Don’t red cars get pulled over more than other colors, though?

      2. Letizia says:

        That’s what I said to my partner when I was trying to decide what color to buy and he didn’t believe me!! But I’m not a fast driver so it’s ok and it’s such a cute car and drives so smoothly. Who could possibly pull me over (flutter of eyelids)?

      3. Eli Pacheco says:

        I give you an 85% chance of charming your way out of a ticket, L. Red car and all.

  11. 1jaded1 says:

    Isn’t time the same everywhere? The dudes on the radio would ask this when calling a CK equivalent from Mich. Awesome questions.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      I found there are time zones in India that are a half-hour difference. Talk about confusion. But I’d use that as an excuse every time I was running late.

      “3? Oh, I thought you said 3:30? What, it *is* 3:30?”

  12. RobinLK says:

    As always, a plethora of interesting Q/A, Eli, with expert weaving. 😉 You’re the second ‘dude blogger’ (guy blogger?) to report the loss of his ‘lady’ this week…. What’s up with you guys?? ‘Tis the season? hee hee

    BTW, do you really use a random Q generator? I LOL at the entire sports reference!

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Sometimes, the seams come naturally, and sometimes, it’s tougher to bind them all together. I was just reminiscing about an old love, that’s all. Gone, not forgotten.

      Maybe this is a sentimental time of year for we fellas.

      Well, the questions are all my girls’. When they ask them, I jot them in a Word file, or note app on my phone. I make sure the master list is updated every week.

      Then I go to random.org, which gives me numbers five times. I answer those questions. Sometimes, they’re deeply related; others are all over the map.

      Coincidences happen often. The week the Baltimore Ravens and Carolina Panthers played this season, a question about whether former Panthers receiver Steve Smith, now with the Ravens, still lived in Charlotte.

      The Goddess of All Things Random might follow me on Pinterest or something.

  13. tamaralikecamera says:

    I blame Austin and Ally for question #2.
    Scarlet (and many others) think I’m insane because when I was a kid, I hated school so much that I touched poison ivy, and my sister’s eye when she had Pinkeye, (ew!) to try to miss school.
    Sadly, it never worked.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      I blame Austin and Ally for child hunger, holes in the ozone, sinkholes, saturated fat, stubbed toes, cigarettes, cracked mobile phone screens, dropped ice cream cones, ugly cats, and that one sunflower seed that tastes like digested earth (and it’s always the last one you eat).

      You’re immune to poison ivy and pinkeye? I bet you repel lightning and mosquitoes, too. You’re pretty effin’ neat-o.

      1. tamaralikecamera says:

        Well I did get poison ivy once. And it was in the summer when I didn’t want to have it.

        I can relate to the sunflower seed but for me it happens with pistachios.

  14. Rorybore says:

    and some people just happen to be immune to poison ivy.
    that’s it – that’s my superpower. 🙂

    what amazes me about time zones, is that going across is time difference, but going down/up is not. So say, while Florida and Vancouver may be close in distance AWAY from me, only one is a different time from me. weird.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      You could fight right alongside Hawkeye, Rore.


      Well, because we’re going up and down, the sun is in the same general place in the sky as we travel from, say, Miami to Charlotte to Philadelphia.

      Ergo, dinner is at the same time in Miami, Charlotte, and Philadelphia, theoretically.

      Now I want a cubano sandwich, Carolina barbecue and a Philly Cheesesteak.

      1. Rorybore says:

        OMGosh!!! there should totally be a vacation package that is completely arranged according to good food/meal times at various locations! Can you just!?

      2. Eli Pacheco says:

        It kind of happens when I daydream anyway, Rore.

  15. Kim says:

    A little late to the Friday board but so many great topics this week!
    I had a maroon GrandAm once – loved it – wrecked it:(
    So the time line – causes me stress all the time. Chris travels a lot (Air Force pilot) and it makes it hard to chat. I had a story to share but then I asked Chris and it wasn’t when they crossed the International date line but the equator. (He was a new pilot and lucked out on a trip to Australia. When they crossed the equator the they stripped down to their boxers and tied their boots together and put them around their neck. Somewhere we have a picture – should have posted it at the Colonel ceremony!!!)

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Never too late Kim – you’re busy exercising for the both of us! (Although I do have yoga and Zumba on the calendar regularly lately).

      A Grand-Am once is your heart is always in your heart. I think I saw that on the Pinterest.

      So, is that an equator thing? I cross the state line every day on the way to work. I wonder if I should try something similar.

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