Echoes From the Loafers’ Club Meeting
That guy is a born cowboy.
Did he grow up with a horse?
No, he grew up bowlegged.
Driving by the Bruces
I have two wonderful neighbors — both named Bruce — who live across the road from each other. Whenever I pass their driveways, thoughts occur to me, such as: The problem with driving is that the slow drivers are always in front of me and the fast ones are always behind me. I drove by an auto accident involving three vehicles. There appeared to be no injuries. I’m sure none of the drivers felt at fault. We blame fate for other accidents, but we feel personally responsible when we make a hole-in-one. The neighbor, who was driving a car with an ice-covered windshield, had been stopped by a policeman. "Don't you think it would help if you scraped the ice off the windshield?" the officer asked. "I don't think so," said the driver. "I left my eyeglasses at home."
Making my escape
I was being released after a 17-day hospital stay when the nurse asked if I wanted a wheelchair to help me make my escape. I didn’t. I wanted to run outside.
I was nearly a free-range human when an indecisive man got into the elevator and pushed the buttons for five different floors. It reminded me of an old story. Hospital regulations had required that a wheelchair be provided for patients being discharged. A nurse found an elderly gentleman dressed and sitting on a hospital bed with a suitcase at his feet. He insisted that he didn't need help to leave the hospital. She reminded him that rules are rules. He reluctantly let her wheel him to the elevator. As they waited for the elevator, she asked him if his wife was meeting him. "I don't know," he said. "She's still upstairs in the bathroom changing out of her hospital gown."
My garage door opener is uninspired
I’d been fixing to do that. Fix the door, that is. Apparently, the wind had caught a metal screen door of our house and had sprung the mechanism that brought the door to a polite close. Fixing to do something is my way of saying I’d be unlikely to undertake such a repair, but I fooled myself by doing it. It had been so much fun that I hoped I’d never have to do it again. It had been a day of the doors. I should have been listening to music provided by The Doors as I went about my tasks.
The other battle was fought with the garage door. I have the world’s worst garage door opener. Yet, I’m still pleased just to have a garage door opener. The opener refuses to work when the outside temperature is too cold or when the sun shines. It takes all holidays off, even the most obscure ones, and it enjoys a couple of personal days off each week. Now it has stopped working Sundays.
I was fighting a losing skirmish against the garage door opener, when my cellphone beckoned. The call was from an old schoolmate. We had a nice talk. It was a welcome respite from my fruitless endeavors. The caller and I rode the same school bus for years.
The thought occurred to me once again that a school bus reunion would be a fine thing. I’ve been fixing to organize one. Everyone who ever rode on that bus would be invited. It’s too late to invite the driver. We could have the reunion at my place. We’d even adopt a worthy project — like fixing my garage door opener.
From the mailbag
Jim Danzenbaker of Battle Ground, Washington writes, "A good friend of mine has a cure for birds that attack their reflections in windows - Saran Wrap on the windows. It has worked on mine and I no longer have song sparrows, spotted towhees and downy woodpeckers attacking their reflections."
Thank you, Jim. I had stumbled upon that remedy years ago, when a window of our home was being attacked by a robin with a good imagination. I had tried reasoning with the bird, but it had no impact on lessening his fury. I was putting cardboard over the outside of the window, when I became worried that the cardboard might cause Martha Stewart to shudder. In order to keep Martha happy, I replaced the cardboard with plastic cling. It kept the shadowboxing robin away.
"Tenderness and kindness are not signs of weakness and despair, but manifestations of strength and resolution." — Kahlil Gibran