Learning How to Make Announcements of Life-Altering Events While Summering in Michigan

Maintaining the family’s solemn oath to spend no more than three nights in any one place during the month of July, we left for Michigan on July 23rd. The drive north was slowed only by the consequences of our massive coffee intake, and we made it to the Detroit area a little after 6pm.

Bonus – escaping the 100 degree temperatures and lung-crushing humidity of Richmond.

The day after we arrived, I went to get groceries at Vince and Joe’s, a Detroit area grocery store with such a strong reputation for its meats and produce that its parking lot perpetually looks like this.

It was about 2pm on a Monday when I went, which was prime time for elderly shoppers who seemed determined to live up to every stereotype of older shoppers. I saw:

  • The slow produce-tester: Apparently content to let death take her in the produce section of Vince and Joe’s, she, while moving at the pace of a gradually retreating glacier, squeezes approximately 50 fruits and vegetables for every one that makes it into her cart.
  • The dazed row-blocker: This is the person who wanders halfway down an isle only to be suddenly struck down by a blast of forgetfulness. Dazed, this person can only turn his head from side to side, gazing at the items in the aisle while trying unsuccessfully to remember what brought him down here in the first place.
  • The meat accumulator: For reasons known only to this shopper, 1.5 pounds of chicken is bad, but 1.7795 pounds of chicken is perfect. Unable to articulate his desired poundage of meat, the shopper can only get to the proper quantity by having the poor employee add pieces of shaved meat one at a time for an eternity.

I later discovered that 4:30pm was the perfect time to shop, as the clientele described above was busy eating dinner while younger shoppers had not yet gotten off work.

The next day, we went to the King’s place for some boating, which was definitely more normal than the shopping experience at Vince and Joe’s.



Even more out of the ordinary than this, Aaron had recently joined Facebook after years of resistance by the Kings to this particular form of social media.


As it turns out, this was a particularly good move because all important information that month would be announced through Facebook.

Now, Aaron could find out about important events like this.

In fact, if Aaron got on Facebook early enough in the day, he could find out before the immediate families of Rita and John! The magic of social media!

While Facebook could update us on the most important events in the lives of very close relatives, it unfortunately let us down when it came to packing essentials for our boating preparations.



Facebook totally failed to notify us of the fact that we had failed to pack a wine key. The solution depicted, which seemed so promising, failed.

Years ago, we ran into the same wine-opening issue…

…this time, though, the resolution was less satisfactory. Only a quick stop at a general store saved the outing from wine-free catastrophe.


 The wine emergency averted, we could enjoy a day on Lake St. Clare on Aaron’s new boat. 

We should tell people how awesome this is on Facebook.

The water was a bit chilly, and it helped that we could jump straight in from the boat. Otherwise, we would have had to awkwardly entered the water from the shore, doing that awkward thing where we somehow get used to the temperature without allowing the cold water to touch any genitals. 

Here, Aaron is making the mistake of updating close relatives on his boat the old-fashioned way, rather than using the Facebook-only approach of the 21st century.

After swimming with acquatic creatures, we moved on to terrorizing them at Sea Life Michigan a few days later. 


This was McKenna’s favorite part, but, as Laura pointed out, it was a bit like the scene from Finding Dory. 

Luckily for many of the fish, they were literally beyond our reach. 

We finished up by convincing McKenna and Molly to get in the hurricane simulator. 


Having experienced simulated high speed winds, we were ready to experience actual high speed winds at Stony Creek Park. On a day in the low 70’s, the winds were gusting up to 40mph. 

Which, as you can see in the background of this picture, is not enough to stop people from swimming in Michigan.

At the end of the week, the West Coast Brogowicz’s arrived. 

With everyone in town, we celebrated Diane’s birthday, which was earlier in July. 

You might have heard about it. It was on Facebook.

On Saturday, we headed up to Caseville for the Girard vacation. In order to prepare, we packed luggage into the car until the density of created time anomalies.

For instance, before even seeing them face-to-face, we somehow…

…learned that Rita and John are engaged! Crazy!


Parts of the vacation in Caseville paralleled Seinfeld’s Festivus. There was a feats of strength portion, where ultra-competitive activities provided adults the opportunity to assert their dominance over the children. 

As with any vacation, there was a fair amount of alcohol consumed as a party broke out on the shores of Saginaw Bay. Enough was consumed that the party could leave the beach and some people would never know. 

Drinking could also drive people to some embarrassing behaviors.

In spite of it the mental fogginess, we were able to solve some important mysteries while in Caseville, like figuring out what this is:

No, you pervert! This is a child’s swimming toy! For shame!


And we gained some useful insight into whether “nature” or “nurture” was more influential in the raising of a child. 

Nature. Clearly, the answer is nature.

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