Thursday, June 28, 2012


“It’s supposed to be one hundred degrees tomorrow,” said Mr. H. as we cleaned up the kitchen after dinner yesterday.

“Well, I won’t be going out of the house; that’s for sure!” I said.

“It’s supposed to be 101° on Friday,” he said, “and then drop into the high 90’s. If the predictions are right, we’ll have nothing but “sizzling” for a while.”

“Oh, well. It’ll be over soon enough,” I said. “We’re already half-way to Christmas, you know.”

Mr. H. chuckled, squinching up his face and turning his eyes into little slits.

“What’s so funny?” I asked him.

“Only you!” he said.

“Only me, what?”

“Only you would think about Christmas in the middle of June when the temperature is 100°."

“I’m not thinking about it really. Just stating the facts. Yesterday, the 25th, was exactly six months until Christmas day. Time goes by so fast; it doesn’t pay to get too attached to one season ‘cause before you can turn around, another one is here. Only yesterday, I heard a man say that we have only two seasons in the United States: Summer and Christmas!"

“Seems that way,” agreed Mr. H.

Almost 24 hours later, my computer weather adviser read 99°. I didn’t think it was going to hit the predicted 100°, but tonight, the TV news reported that it actually made it about six o’clock this evening.

I didn’t go outside all day and don’t intend to tomorrow either. I’ll just enjoy my summer hibernation until the temps drop into the low 80’s at least. I’m sure I can find plenty to do inside.

Maybe I’ll start my Christmas list.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

No Card For Aunt Dorothy

My husband’s Aunt Dorothy, a spry 80 year old, recently went to K-Mart to pick up a few items. When she was checking out, the cashier, a young man, asked, “Do you have a card?”

Dorothy hesitated a few seconds and then said, “I don’t know what you’re talking about; what kind of card?”

Before he could explain, the young man in line behind her held out his hand
showing her his card and said, “Oh, you have to have a card! It allows you to get all kinds of good deals – sales and such!”

That sounded fine to Dorothy, so she said, “Okay, give me a card.”

The young man at the register said, “Great! I'll need your cell phone number.”

Dorothy thought for a minute and said, “Well, I have a cell phone, but hardly ever use it except in an emergency. I’m afraid I don’t remember the number.”

“No problem," the young man answered. “Just give me your e-mail address then.”

Feeling a little embarrassed, Dorothy said, “I have a computer, but don’t use it very often either. I have to confess, I don’t know my e-mail address.”

After a long sigh, the young man informed Dorothy, as kindly as he could, “I’m sorry, Ma’am, I can’t give you a card!”

Dorothy wasn’t heart-broken. She related the story to my husband and they had a good laugh.

I suppose there's a moral to this story: Even if you’re an octogenarian who lives alone, still drives, goes to work every day, does your own shopping, cooking and cleaning, cuts your grass, and spends a lot of time doing church work, you’ll still be denied certain advantages if you’re electronically challenged!

What a peculiar world this has become!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

I Hate White Lips!

Laughter comes easily for our family, especially the females. You might say we have a “weird” sense of humor, often laughing at things most people wouldn’t find the least bit funny.

For instance: this past Sunday, my daughter called from North Carolina to wish her dad a Happy Father’s Day. She and her family are on a short vacation at the beach and she was telling me that some friends of theirs are also there. She said, “You remember Geoff and Tina Turner don’t you?” Without thinking, I said, “Yes,” but then it hit me – that doesn’t sound right.

I said, “Did you say, Geoff and Tina Turner?” to which she replied, “Uh-huh,” and then... “No! I meant Geoff and Tina Perkins. What made me say that?”

“Are you drinking?” I asked. “No, of course not,” she said indignantly. We shared a giggle or two before I gave the phone to her dad. She told him about her little gaffe and said, “I’ll never live that one down.”

And she won’t!

Blunders like that usually come from that particular daughter; I’ve written about them before, but there is also one about her younger sister that gets repeated now and then.

She and I were on our way to visit her older sister, who lived in Michigan at the time. It was an eight hour drive and, after we’d been on the road a couple of hours, she went to sleep. She’d been asleep quite a while when I entered a little town that slowed me down to 25 mph. When I stopped at a red light, youngest daughter groaned, stretched and opened her eyes. The first thing she saw was a sign that read: Delaware – Pop. 34,753. Shaking her head in disbelief, she said, “So, we’re no longer in Ohio. We’re in Delaware, right?”

When I giggled, she knew she’d made a mistake, and after she was wide-awake, she realized how bad it was. “You’re gonna tell everyone I said that, aren’t you?” she said. “You bet!” I answered with glee. “I love it!”

But what goes around comes around, they say, and I got my just dues when we arrived at her sister’s house a few hours later. After greetings all around, I headed for the ladies room. Looking in the mirror, I was surprised to see a tired, pale reflection looking back at me. No lipstick. I hate white lips! Since I hadn’t brought my purse in with me, I looked around to see if there was any lipstick in plain sight – didn’t want to rummage through cabinets. Ah, yes. There at the back of the countertop stood a couple of tubes. Opening each one, I found a nice coral color I liked. After dabbing a bit on, though, I realized it didn’t have much color, so I rubbed it on a little more vigorously. Yes. That’s good. I like it! Maybe nobody will notice and I won’t have to confess that I used daughter’s lipstick.

Feeling better, I joined the rest of the family in the living room. After a few minutes, my daughter said, “I see you put on some lipstick.” A little embarrassed, I said, “Yes, I borrowed one of yours. Hope you don't mind.”  When she and her sister snickered, I said, “What’s so funny?” She answered, “Go look in the mirror.”

As I went, laughter followed me. I couldn’t wait to see what was so funny. Until I did! I looked like a clown! My lips were bright pink! Really bright, glow-in-the-dark neon pink! It just so happened that she’d acquired some of the faddish lip color of the day. It went on very light, but surprised the wearer in about 10 minutes by turning excessively bright. Garish! Who knows why she’d placed it in her bathroom in plain view? I had my suspicions. Whatever the reason, I’d made a fool of myself and provided the evening's entertainment.

The worst of it was – it wouldn’t come off! I rubbed and scrubbed until my lips were sore, but that hideous bright pink clung to me like glue. That’s when my “sweet” daughter informed me, while she and her sister cracked up, “It has dye in it. It has to wear off!”

Sure enough, the next morning when I awakened, I ran to the mirror hoping I’d dreamed the whole thing, but no, my lips were still bright pink! With more scrubbing and applying softer colors, I managed to get through the next two days without looking too gaudy, and by the third day, most of it was gone.

But just like her vacationing with Tina Turner, and her younger sister going through Delaware to get to Michigan, I will never live it down!

The lipstick story will live much longer than I do.


Saturday, June 9, 2012

Only One Life To Live

Years ago, my eldest son and I went to Paris, France together. We had many memorable experiences that I hadn’t thought about for a while – until recently. My granddaughter is going to Europe in a few weeks and is very excited. The two of us have been discussing the things she's likely to see and do and it's brought back a lot of wonderful memories.

I’ve always said if I believed in reincarnation, I’d be certain I spent my first life in Paris because, since I was a child, it was always my dream to go there. When it became a reality and I stepped off the plane at Orly Airport, I immediately felt “at home.”

My son had been to Paris before. When he was in high school, he went on a six-week tour of Europe with the Foreign Study League. He was only sixteen years old. As his mother, it was difficult for me to let him go that far from home for that long, but it was such a grand opportunity for him that I didn’t feel I could deprive him of it either. So, I bit the bullet and watched him fly away from Kanawha Airport, knowing I wouldn’t see him again for six long weeks. Hot tears spilled over and ran down my face as I watched the plane leave the ground and disappear from sight.

But two years later, I was on the plane with him as we waved good-bye to the rest of the family and took off for New York where we’d board a 747 Jet to make the flight across the Atlantic. It was exciting and scary at the same time, as I really didn’t like flying, especially that far. And over water.

But I have never regretted it. I have talked incessantly about it, written about it and dreamed about it many times throughout the years since I actually lived it. It was one of the highlights of my life! I’m so grateful for the experience.

It’s funny how history repeats. My daughter is worried about her daughter going that far for that long – just as I was worried about her brother so many years ago. And her concerns are rubbing off on her daughter, who recently told me she’s nervous about the flight. I assured her that this is an opportunity of a lifetime and she will never regret it. She will tell her children and grandchildren about it, perhaps write about it, as I have, and Heaven only knows how many times she’ll relive the things she does and sees on the trip!

We must never allow fear to keep us from enjoying all the wonderful things life offers. No matter what you’ve been told, we have only one life to live.

Live it to the fullest!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Poor Old Clyde

My son, Mark, has a friend, John, who swears that his cat regularly tries to commit suicide. When he told Mark about it the first time, Mark laughed and said, “Oh, you must be joking. Cats don’t commit suicide.” But John insisted that when he goes home in the evening, he can tell Clyde has tried to kill himself because he finds plastic bags everywhere, and, only the evening before, he'd opened the door just in time to see Clyde trying to put one over his head. “I stopped him in the nick of time,” he said.

When Mark laughed aloud, John became quite indignant, “Don’t laugh!” he said. “This is serious! You don’t know what it’s like living with a suicidal cat! I never know what I’ll find when I go home in the evening.”

Mark shared this story with us, his family, and we all had a good laugh at the very thought of a feline named Clyde trying to commit suicide.

It went on for a while with John telling Mark fairly often that Clyde was still trying to do himself in and he was afraid of what he’d see every day when he opened the door to his house. He hid all the plastic bags but feared that poor old Clyde was so depressed he’d find another way.

And he finally did!

Yesterday, when Mark got to work, John met him with a glum look on his face and said, “You won’t believe it! Clyde is at it again.”

Mark – ready for anything – said “What happened, John?”

Rolling his eyes, John said, “He climbed on the kitchen counter and tried to hang himself with the toaster cord.”

“Oh, John, that’s ridiculous!” said Mark. “He couldn’t do that by himself.”

“I’m not kidding, Mark!” John declared. “The cord was dangling all the way to the floor. I know old Clyde tried to hang himself with it, but thank goodness, he didn’t succeed!”

Finally realizing he’d never convince John otherwise, Mark decided to go along, “I’m happy Clyde is okay,” he said. “Maybe he won’t try it again.”

“Oh, I’m sure he will," John insisted. "That cat's just not right in the head.

Never has been!”