Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Insomnia Almanac #4 (or so)

It wasn't really insomnia. I woke up and was considering getting up to go to the bathroom.  I sat on the edge of the bed... and fell asleep sitting up, and then took a nose dive. 

I woke up in mid-air, and so I didn/t hit too hard...just hard enough. Now the naked, one-legged, 81 year old man was on the floor - but awake.  No need to try to get up by myself.  But I could not reach the call-button cord.

Slowly I moved my wheelchair out of the way...hitched along the floor on my butt like a pre-walking infant, reached the call-button cord, and pulled. I had plenty of time to reflect how lucky it is that I live in an assisted living facility with twenty-four hour attendants. Pretty soon a knock on my door and a caregiver came in.  She was blazé about finding a naked senior citizen on the floor...must happen a lot. 

She used her walk-around to summon a helper, who announced "We're not allowed to pick him up."  I had visions of sitting on the floor until paramedics arrived.  So I got them to help me to my knees and my arms on the bed, and then SOMEHOW I got my rear raised high enough so they could push my wheelchair under my sitter. 

I was all right... I continued my trip to the bathroom.  I had scraped my arm getting up and they applied band aids to the wounds.  I rested and read a book in the bathroom for a while, then when they came back to check on me,  I asked for supervision getting back in bed.  I managed without incident.

Sure made a nice conversation starter at breakfast though... "How was your night?" 

"Wow, let me tell you......"

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Read the Fine Print

It is easy to dupe an old person.  Neighbor of mine wants to sell her car.  Well, it seems, she doesn't OWN the car she has.  She has been making "payments" for over a year, except the "payments" have been on a LEASE.  She was "selling" the car because she is nearly broke, but now it looks like she won't be getting anything.  She is merely cancelling a lease.

I have had sitting on my desk a DVD called "Sgt. Bilko".  I have been anticipating watching Phil Silvers bamboozle Pvt. Doberman on those precious old televison episodes of "You'll never Get Rich."  I have savored the thought of those silly shows for some time, waiting for the leisurely moment to run them.  Ahhh, nostalgia, How will Silvers get the best of the General tonight?

At last, the right moment came and I slipped in the shiny DVD.  And what started?  Sgt. Bilko, to be sure, but played by STEVE MARTIN in 1996.  Steve you are all right, but you're not the cunning, coniving scheming Bilko I knew. Phil Silver's Bilko was smart enough to outwit the Army's top brass...weekly.  Steve Martin's Bilko forgets his wedding day.  Oh, come now.  The master con man is that dumb? I don't think so.

I stopped the DVD.  I may watch it when I get over my disappointment. My neighbor and I merely need to read the fine print before we order.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Wry Commentary

Congress is insisting that disaster plans include provisions for safety of pets.  The congresspeople were distressed by the heart wrenching sight of children leaving their pets behind to perish. Their action brought to mind a scene from an old movie.

A ship's officer loads the life boat with every person possible, but has to leave some people adrift.  An abandoned passenger pleads, "You're leaving us adrift, but you're taking the dog? Why?"

"Because," says the officer, played by Tyrone Power, "we can't eat you."

Sunday, May 21, 2006


Every morning I have a long phone conversation with my 90 year-old cousin   She lives alone and cares for herself which is remarkable.  Our conversations roam all over.  Today we were doing a little research on phone line.  She had the book.

We had a topic we wanted to find out about and she looked it up in the index.

"It's on page 122," she said.


She began thumbing the pages..."Fifty... seventy....ah,  what page are we looking for?"


"Oh yes  100, 115, 122.  Ah, what are we looking for?"


"Oh yes.  Ah what is it used for?"

"Short term memory."

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Unlucky Lucky Day

When the telephone rings and a recorded voice says “Congratulations, this is your lucky day, …” I don’t get excited. I know what I have won, five days and nights in Las Vegas, a trip to Acapulco, or the right to mortgage my home for 5%, is a bogus non-prize.

So when the voice said, “This is County Bank, you have won two prizes in our raffle,” I should have been expecting what I actually got. But I got my hopes up. Silly me.

One day recently at the bank, I noticed a table filled with gorgeous gift filled baskets. One caught my eye: It was filled with Hershey Bars, M & M, and other candy. Wow, what a treat. They were being raffled off to provide a fund to send teen-ages on a safe and sane “grad night” party.

That’s a worthy cause. An all-night grad night party with chaperones in a confined venue and a breakfast in the morning. The idea, I presume, is to cut down on drunken brawls, pregnancy, and head-on car crashes that occur in unsupervised communities. I could contribute to that.

I dug out my wallet and fished out the one dollar bills. There were four. I passed them to the lady in charge and she wrote my name and phone number on some tickets and marked them with the number of the basket I hoped to win…the one with the candy.

I went home and forgot about it, until later in the day. I got a call. There was five dollar bill in with the ones. They put the extra five dollars back in my account. (Glad they didn’t just give me five more chances.)

A few weeks later, last night in fact, I got a message that I had won “a couple of prizes” and could stop by for them.

Wow, more that one prize. How will I carry those two big baskets on my scooter. Oh, wait. How could I have won TWO baskets? I only chose one. Oh, well, I will take the one with the candy and leave the other to be awarded to a runner-up. I was all largess and benevolence, I was so lucky. I could afford to share my prize. After all, it was all in a good cause.

This morning I scooted to the bank. Yes, the baskets were still on the table, and lucky number ten with the candy was still sitting tantalizingly there. I told my name to the lady in charge.

She handed me, not candy, but two envelopes: “You won TWO prizes… taco bell and car wash.”

Zing. Hershey melt down. My prizes evaporated like a trip to Acapulco from a mortgage company in Las Vegas. Poof.

What I had actually won was two “CBO Meals” from Taco Bell and Five “Prime Shine” car washes from Express Car Wash.

If you think I was disappointed, compare that with the crushing blow felt by the high school grad, confined to a safe and sane dry dance hall who had expected to spend his graduation night getting drunk, racing his car, and getting laid.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Plug for Rite Aid and added comments

First, got a hair cut...then scooted to Rite Aid Drug Store and cruised around inside...just looking.  I only bought some beer and some plastic bags, but I enjoy just cruising and looking.

Nice big store, well laid out, tons and tons of merchandise.  Love it.

LATER: In comments below, Garnett expresses surprise that you can buy beer in a drug store.  LOL, yes, and liquor too.  And lawn furniture, and birdseed, and shoes, and clothes.  Jackie says she likes Walgreen's. So do I. It is right across the street from Rite Aid, but the aisles are narrower, and there are only about half as many. 

Rite Aid is laid out in rows, AND diagonal aisles, intermixed. You can get lost in a Rite Aid store, and that is fun.  Wandering the aisles filled with wonderous merchandise, until you find a clerk to lead you out. The Labrynth's at Delphi or Lesbos or Cornith (Actually Crete says Wikipedia.) were never this much fun.  .

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Mothers' Day at the Old Folks Home

   What a nice Mothers' Day at the Old Folks Home.  Each lady was given a long stemmed carnation as she entered and was ushered to her seat.

   The entree today was baked potato, a treat hereabouts.  The potato bar was loaded with toppings: salsa, butter, sour cream, chives, bacon bits, broccoli and cheese, and perhaps more that I don't remember.

   All these were served with fresh fruit.  Choice of pie for dessert.  Charming day for the ladies who stayed here for the day.  Many were out with families. 

   A happy day for grandfathers too.

Insomniac Almanac

Just worked forty minutes on this entry and then got booted. Spoiled my sense of well being.

  Went to bed early, ten p.m., feeling punk.  Woke at one a.m. feeling good.  Usually don't dream so early in the night, but had a remarkable dream that left me with a sense of well-being.

   A group of men and I, seemed to be in eighteenth century England, and were working on getting the exact flavor of vinegar to add to a large pot of soup.  Remarkable in the dream was the fact that I could taste the flavors of vinegar.

   Children were playing outside, not sitting around watching television. 

   Now what am I going to do with the rest of this long night.  Sometimes when I have interrupted a dream, I have been able to go back to sleep and continue the dream... but in this case, I don't care what flavor that soup eventually takes. 

   Maybe I'll go outside and play with the children.

Friday, May 12, 2006

According to Statistics

...if you drive to the store to buy your Mega Millions ticket, the chances are six times greater that you will be killed in a traffic accident than they are that you will win the Jackpot.  So says Durango Bill.

Thursday, May 11, 2006


Although avocados are back up to $1.69, I bought one. ONE. I put it on the kitchen sink sideboard. Just to taunt myself. I see it often during the day. In my minds’ eye, I see it moving itself around to catch the sun. The sun ripens it.

It mellows and I faint, so to speak. Suddenly I have the avocado in one hand and knife in other. I cut the top off, grab a spoon, and dig out the large stone. Then I add herb and garlic sour cream. Right in the avocado shell I mix a rich guacamole.

Now on crackers this would be a treat, but the avocadoholic in me will not wait for me to open crackers.

“I don’t need no stinkin’ crackers.” I dig in, and finish it off. Oh, I reproach myself for eating it all, not saving any of anyone else, nor even saving some for after supper. 

I ate it all.

I gotta go get another, no matter what they boost the price to.

Monday, May 8, 2006

What's In a Name?

Half and Half?  Half cream and half milk I was taught.  And what is "cream"?  Whole milk in which the batterfat was allowed to rise to the top.  Ah yes, thick creamy substance. 

But SO VERY RICH that we had to "cut" it with milk, to make a liquid for lightening our coffee.  What was left when the Half and Half was siphoned off? SKIMMED MILK. Yeech.

Now what do we have here?  "Fat Free Half and Half"?

A contradiction in terms.  If it is "fat free" it can't be cream, and if it can't be cream it can't be "half and half".

If "no refrigeration" is needed, it can't even be a dairy product. And if you have to shake it, it isn't even all liquid.

I ask you: What IS IT?

It is a grade A patented product that is not for individual sale, so if you want one in your coffee put your nickle can't buy just one.

So There, Fans

Barry Bonds was booed and jeered and taunted all afternoon by Philadelphia fans.  Then he hit homerun number 713.  Then the fan who recovered the ball brought it to Bonds and asked him to sign it.

Then Bonds did what I would have done.  Smiled and did nothing.

Bravo Barry.

And what a hub bub about 713th homerun.  When he ACTUALLY ties Aaron's record with number 714, what will happen?  And when he PASSES the record with 715?  What then?

Of course, if I catch number 715, I hope he will sign it.