Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Episode #200....Season 2 Finale

For close to a year Klecko has provided you with a post every 1.376 days.

It's important for me to keep stride, I know how many of you are kind enough to insert my musings into your lunch breaks or during those special moments in your life that you spend alone with yourself.

I covet being apart of that.

And if there's just one things that really hacks me off, its when I am sprawled out on the couch to watch Project Runway and the network decides to drop a bomb that says.....

"Due to tonight's programming, such and such will not be on so we can bring to you the following blah-blah-blah. Make sure to join us next week at the regular broadcast time for.... etc-etc".

I wouldn't do that to a brother.

Well it's been 4 days since my last post, but on a season finale, you can't rush it.

All day yesterday, and all this morning I asked the Holy Polish Ghost to give me a great closing piece.

Dude....the Holy Polish Ghost so...moves in mysterious ways.


If you're a guy, and your at the gym, there are certain "Guy Rules" for just about everything that takes place during your work out. we've talked about some of these things in the past.

Tonight was a "Legs and Cardio day", but to be honest. I skipped "Legs" and decided that I would just do my 30 minutes on the "Dreadmill" and then head home.

So Klecko climbs on and starts his workout.

At about the 10 minute mark, all of a sudden...out of nowhere, I kinda had to pee.

The pressure was not unbearable, but it was more than mild.

Huff-Puff I going to be able to make it 20 more minutes?

Well bless the Saint Faustina and all of the kittens in Warsaw, guess who just happens to enter the gym unannounced?

It's Sue McGleno and she decides to hop on the treadmill next to mine.

Every time Sue McGleno treadmills, she always selects a unit next to mine.

Some of you may think that's sweet, maybe even kinda romantic, but its really not.

Sue McGleno's just nosey and wants to goose neck and check out my running time, heart rate, and a 1/2 the other statistics that I don't even understand.

13:41 - 13:42 - 13:43 reads my L.E.D. screen, but after a lengthy pause....she'll ask me......

"How long have you been walking"?

I never answer.

But now it starts to get worse, I have to pee really-really bad.

The quandary here however is....according to "Regular Guy" rules, if you step off the treadmill for any reason, you forfeit the accrued minutes and have to start over and repeat the set in it's entirety.

Typically Klecko is in control of his surroundings, but today....I got sucker punched by my bladder.

It's funny though, cuz even though at that point, I knew I wouldn't last the full set, but yet I still delayed surrender.

What was I thinking? It's not like the angels were going to glide down from the heavens and hit me up with some kind of catheter hook up.

Just about the point when I was about to burst and imitate George Jetson getting caught in some kind of inter galactic - perpetual tread mill loop, I hopped off and ducked walked out of the gym, into the isolated cinder block hallway and down the corridor to the rest room.

When I turned the corner, a door that I never noticed was open and for the splitest of seconds, I was more than creeped out.

Only serial killers hang out in utilities closets ,in cinder block hallways right?

Not this time. With my head on a swivel I noticed it was Annie the gym attendant, and she was mixing cleaning chemicals over the utility sink.

She looked sad, but I had to pee.

Maybe it's T.M.I. to share thoughts that go through your mind while you are urinating, but we're family now...right?

Well to be honest, I was more than concerned when I saw Annie appear upset.

She is 25, a year younger than my daughter, and is new to the Twin Cities.

Her hometown is somewhere in northern Michigan and she came here about a year ago to attend school.

I've known her for 1/2 a year and see her at the gym 5 to 6 nights a week.

In addition to classes, and taking care of our work out space, she also work at a deli,

I admire this young woman's work ethic. She reminds me of my daughter.

So now I exit the bathroom and Annie is mixing more chemicals as if she were Dr. Frankenstein.

So Klecko stands next to her and asks here what's new?

Annie gets this 1/2 morose smile and answers......

"Tomorrow I am going to be 25, I think I'm going to take the night off and have drinks at the Happy Gnome. (dramatic pause - puppy dog eyes are raised, then she asks....)If you, or you and Sue McGleno wanted to stop by, that would be cool."

That's when my heart sank, for a couple reasons.

First off, when you are 25 and you really want to spend a marquee birthday with middle aged peeps?

Well, Sue McGleno and I were hard locked into dinner plans, ones that we couldn't get out of even if we wanted to.

So I tell Annie this, and the sadness in her eyes sank a little deeper.

"Hey kid, if I could, I would go for drinks, but what I really wanted was to bring you a birthday cake. Let me're a chocolate girlio right?"

Annie swirls some bleach, or pink soap,or wind shield wash looking stuff and replies.....

"That's nice of you (and now a dim light starts to rise in her eyes) but I wouldn't want you to go through the trouble. But I've never been crazy about chocolate cake. I'm into red velvet!"

The kid was reaching out, she was vunerable, in a very natural way.

In Klecko's world, there is nothing more kryptonite than lonliness, so he's pretty sensitive to that when he sees it in others.

So now all of a sudden my mind starts zipping through my skull and my thoughts shifted and I began to think about my daughter.

She's in Omaha.

That's 6 hours away from me.

So now as I look at Annie smiling over potential cake prospects, I began to wonder if my little KiKi has ever had to reach out to some thug like me in Nebraska.

As we speak (me and you that is), the cake is done, and resting in the freezer, I will be bringing it to the kid in a few hours.

During the first 100 episodes (Series #1) of The Last American Baker, Sue McGleno was the main supporting charactor that I intertwined with food industry stories.I felt by adding might be the quickest way for you guys to get to know me.

Then in Season #2, Kim Ode was the walk on. In addition to being better than friends, she kinda is my work spouse.

But now that I've tossed over a million words at you guys, I've realized that maybe I've been using my bully pulpit as a confessional, and maybe it's time to focus on somebody other than myself.

Maybe that person should be you.

Most of my readers are women, and that's why I decided that in series #3, maybe there is something that I can give you in addition to recipes, poems and embellished stories.

I think I am going to feature my daughter KIKI, and my Granddaughter Madison.

In some respects I think I value my daughters attention more than anybodys on the planet.

Because for the longest of times, I wasn't certain it was even obtainable.

Dear Polish Christ.....we crossed miles of razor blades to get to where we are today.

KiKi is stubborn, opinionated and a lout.

She is the splitting image of her father.

But you know, there was a solid decade of my life when I went to bed in fear each morning.

I was afraid that my daughter wouldn't realize I was just trying to be a dad, and do dad things, and that perhaps she would go on hating me for the rest of my life.

In my world it has been dad first, friend second.

Now that I have a granddaughter thats 2 1/2, I am thakful.

Spending time with her gives me an oppurtunity to show my daughter that I have paid attention to what she has taught me.

Thanks for everything, I look forward to the next 100 episodes.

I love most of you.


  1. With humility -- and absolute delight -- I relinquish my role as walk-on and look forward your musings on daughters and granddaughters and the vines that entwine families. I, too, love you most of the time. Thanks for 200. Write on.

  2. Well, dad this is truly my first time every reading a blog. Yes, I know I am 27 years old and never have read a blog..really? Dad you have caught my heart and you have said some very sweet things about me. Over the last 27 years we have had our struggles but we have also had some great times. Now please remember when you are writing theses stories I am a splitting image of you. So most likely I learned it for YOU.

    Love you and start writing!