Dimon Kendrick-Holmes: The quickest long weekend ever

February 21, 2014 

Editor's note: This column may contain spoilers for the first season of "House of Cards."

This year, as I'm sure you noticed, Valentine's Day fell on a Friday. I suppose some couples just went ahead and made a weekend of it.

Good for them.

As for me, this rare Valentine's Weekend coincided with the Muscogee County School District's winter break, when my wife visits family in Tennessee and takes the children with her.

As usual, I stayed behind to catch up on work and -- off the record -- enjoy the peace and quiet.

So on Valentine's Friday night, with my wife out of town, I found myself standing alone in the grocery store, and for the first time in my life I didn't feel like a procrastinator.

Bess and I had celebrated Valentine's Day the week before. So now, while the other men in the store were fighting over the last remaining bouquet and box of candy, I was toting a six pack and picking out the biggest steak I could find.

At home, I decided to skip the grill and cook my steak on the stove. That's when I realized two things:

First, you can put an awesome sear on a steak when you pan-fry it on the stove.

And second, the reason men like to grill so much, especially with charcoal, is probably because it looks like work and puts a meal on the table but it's actually an opportunity to sit outdoors, drink a cold beverage and hear yourself think.

Anyway, while I was putting an awesome sear on my steak, I tried to set the timer on the oven and a bunch of weird symbols showed up on the digital display. But when I looked closely, I realized they were letters spelling out the word "Sabbath."

That's about the most memorable thing that happened to me all weekend. Like I said, I'd planned to catch up on work, but something else happened: I decided to join the human race and subscribe to Netflix.

Then I decided to watch a couple of minutes of "House of Cards" to see what all the fuss was about.

Big mistake.

I'm not going to say how many episodes I finished in one weekend, but let's just say that since I started watching, Frank Underwood is now Vice President of the United States and doing the kind of things you could never imagine Joe Biden doing.

You know, like -- SPOILER ALERT -- killing people.

Somewhere in the middle of my viewing spree, I realized that watching entire seasons of TV shows on Netflix has probably replaced reading novels. In fact, it takes about as long to watch Season 1 of "House of Cards" as it does to read any John Grisham novel, and that's if you're a really slow reader.

I think "The Wire," an HBO crime series that ended in 2008 and has been compared to 19th-century Russian novels, is far superior to "House of Cards." But the latter, with its Grisham-like cliffhangers, is much more addictive.

So addictive that it took a text message on Sunday from my wife to knock me out of my stupor: She'd just left Tennessee -- a day early -- and would be arriving home in three hours… in time for supper.

What day was it?

And how do I get the oven out of Sabbath mode?

Contact Dimon Kendrick-Holmes, executive editor, at dkholmes@ledger-enquirer.com

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