The Zany Happenings of Zaino

Archive for July, 2012

You Learn Something New Everyday…

Since I have been busy with swimming and our program, I haven’t been home a lot.  This means I am missing out on a lot of Zaino “gems”.  “Gems” are what he started calling his funny comments.  So, I am going to share a story about Zaino from last year from around this time; however, it continues to be brought up.  With family visiting over the last couple of months, we have been sharing this story with them.

For as long as I can remember, my dad as always played the harmonica.  When I was younger, I remember him taking his harmonica out and playing at parties or in the car to a song.  It has always been something I thought was so cool.  I loved that my dad could just jam on his harmonica.  I always used to ask him, “How do you know what to play?”  He always responded, “I don’t!  I just play what I feel!”  This is so my dad; laid back, goes with the flow, and just likes to have fun!

Another thing about my dad is that when he finds something he likes or enjoys doing, he goes all out!  He completely immerses himself in it.  (There will be more posts about his obsessions later.)  So, about a year and half ago he started immersing himself in actually learning to play the harmonica.  He checked out blues albums from the library, bought harmonica books from, found free tutorials online, and even Skyped with a harmonica instructor.  Needless to say he was pretty busy actually learning to play the harmonica.

The reason he decided to learn to play the harmonica was because his work was holding a charity event for United Way.  They formed a band and Zaino of course was the harmonica player.  He started going to “band” practice weekly; needless to say he was MIA for about 6 months.  I don’t know if my mom thought that was a good or bad thing, but Zaino loved learning to play the harmonica!  I loved seeing my dad so excited about it!

Anyway, my Mom and I went to Chicago for the United Way charity event!  My dad did amazing and all of his hard work paid off!  Take a look at a short clip of him playing at the event!

Zaino Jammin’

Okay, let’s get into his “gems”.  As soon as he got up on the stage, my mom and I were laughing hysterically.  I knew he could play the harmonica, but I had no idea he could dance like that!  I guess you learn something new everyday!  He was totally in his element and loving every minute of it!  At one point my mom said, “This must be what Zaino looks like without me!”

Since my family has been visiting, we had to show them his performance, so we popped in his DVD of the performance.  I have never in my life heard my Nanny laugh so hard!  We still die laughing every time we watch the DVD, including Zaino.  My words do not give his performance justice, so I am going to let his performance do the talking.  See for yourself what I learned that day about Zaino.

Zaino Dancin’

He still plays in gigs for work sometimes and he plays at family friends’ weddings.  However, he has cut down on the Skype lessons and practice sessions down in his cave.  (I hope it is not because I am in there now!)  But, we do relive that day by periodically watching his DVD.

I guess lesson learned, you never know what Zaino will say or do!


Zaino’s Cave…Or Is It?

I still live at home with my mom and dad and needless to say, I could probably move into my own house just based solely on the amount of “stuff” I have. Don’t get me into my “stuff” right now…I’m sure my dad’s response to my “stuff” will be another post at some point. Anyway, my room was very cluttered with my bed, multiple dressers, bookshelves, a desk, etc. My Nanny was in town for two months and she is known for rearranging furniture and redecorating. With her encouragement and my mom’s green light, I nervously asked Zaino, my initially resisted nickname for my dad, if I could move my office into his dun dun…..the cave in the basement. His initial response was, “WHAT????” However, after further discussion and coaxing he allowed me to move my desk, two bookshelves, and a dresser into his man cave. I should say that my Nanny was elated that I was going to have my own workspace, and she thought it was hilarious that he was going to have to share the cave with me. She named the cave, kahf (كهف), which is Arabic for cave. She dubbed us kahf-mates. He was pleased (this statement is dripping with sarcasm if you couldn’t tell).

There were some guidelines for me to be down in the kahf, don’t get me wrong! The rules according to Zaino for being in the kahf:

1. You can’t be down there when I am.

2. If you have to come down into the cave, DO NOT talk to me!

3. DO NOT touch my things.

4. DO NOT come on my side of cave.

During the initial move-in, there were some to be expected encounters.

  • He placed a bookcase jutting out from the wall, so that there would be a “partition”. (This was later changed by my mom–she did not like it!)
  • I went downstairs to get a pen and I just said hi. I received a glare and was asked, “Why are you talking to me?”
  • I brought home my class fish (a third kahf-mate-dubbed by Nanny) and I was told that there was no more space for him.

The general happenings in the kahf, will most likely be separate blog posts, just like the latest from yesterday…

I coach swimming, as most of you know, and I had all 10 coaches coming to my house yesterday to work on fun awards for all of our swimmers. The logical place to have that many people working is in the basement right? So, I go down into the basement and tell my dad that the girls will be coming over to work. The exchange:

Me: “Dad, the coaches are going to be coming over today to work on awards. We are going to be in the basement.”

Zaino: “What?!? When? Why?” (In rapid succession)

Me: “Soon. Dad, we are working on awards.”

Zaino: “What? Why do you have to do this here?”

Me: “Where would you want me to do it?”

Zaino: “At the pool!”

Me: “Dad, that doesn’t really work. We have computers, paper, and it is windy out.”

Zaino: “Ugh okay.”

Using the cave went well and he was fine….he survived! 🙂

Here is a picture of our cave! My desk is on the right and my dad’s desk is in the back on the left.

Later that evening, we were talking about the kahf. And let’s just say, I do NOT say it correctly and I get reminded of this often. So, Zaino was trying to teach me how to say it. Basically, you have to use the back of throat. Listen here! Anyway, after several attempts and still failing. He just told me to choke myself and say it!


We died laughing for a good 5 minutes!

This is my life with Zaino! It is fun, enlightening, hilarious, and definitely zany! I would not change anything about him or our relationship! This will be the blog of the zany happenings of Zaino, so that hopefully you can all join in on the zany fun!