Sunday, August 19, 2012

An explanation of AIS

Six days, 1950 miles, and 31 hours behind the wheel later, we are home and the whole thing is finally over. Total cost came in at 8 dollars shy of $2000. Collapsed in bed around 10:30 last night...and naturally woke up at 1, wide awake. Nothing more to say about the trip. However, as a public service, I feel it necessary to address an issue that has arisen from a term I used in a previous blog...AIS. It has elicited several raised eyebrows, and even a response from my mother-in-law.."What's AIS??", she asked.

AIS is a term I first heard used on that most profound of all television shows dealing with the dynamic of family life..Everybody Loves Raymond. The patriarch of the Barone clan, Frank, used the term when describing how he organized and planned departure times for family vacations. When Frank declared that AIS time was 6 am, it was final, and nonnegotiable. AIS meant, crudely..ass in seat. Ever since then I have used it myself with great effect. The term communicates perfectly it's unambiguous meaning. What is the last thing one does before departing for a trip in a car?? Exactly.

My family has responded well to such clear and abrupt language. However, using the AIS concept with my extended family with our seven vehicle caravans to the Outer Banks would probably not go so well. Probably something like this.....


Me:  Paula, it's 6:03. What is Ron doing?

Paula:  Oh, he's adding one more of those stretchy things to the bike rack to make sure they are secure.

Me:  No, no, Paula. I clearly wrote in the last e-mail that AIS time was to be 6:00. Why is Ron BCB at 6:03?  ( bungee-cording bikes )

                                                                    later

Me:  Linda...where is Bill? It's 6:13??

Linda:  Oh, he noticed that he only had 3 quarters of a tank of gas, so he's filling up. He'll only be a minute.

Me:  Wait, Bill is TOT at 6:13?? ( topping off tank ) Does anyone in this family read e-mails??!!

                                                                   even later

Me:  Paula, what in heaven's name is Ron doing now?

Paula:  Looks like he's adding some extra waterproofing to the car top carrier. You know, there's some rain on the radar down near Williamsburg.

Me:  But, one does not FWT at 6:17 when one's A should have been IS at 6:00! ( fiddle with tarp ). And by the way, I haven't seen Ryan.

Paula:  Oh, he's still inside trying to decide which hat to wear, the Nationals or the Yankees.

Me:  Do you mean to tell me that Ryan is OOALAG at 6:18?? I give up. This family is hopeless. ( obsessing over accessories like a girl ).