“Because you are a warm blooded creation that makes mosquitoes go ‘Yum,’ My son.”
Well, that explains it all. Thanks, God.
In the wake of Hurricane Harvey a Gazillion mosquito larvae erupted into the air, all looking for lunch and I must look like the buffet at the Golden Corral Restaurant.
Welcome to post-hurricane Texas.
It was barely 6:10 AM when I walked through the door at St. Arbucks and I was greeted by a friend I hadn’t seen in months. He had just popped in for a coffee and five minutes later we would have missed each other. I’m glad that we didn’t.
Terry is a retired career Navy man who moved back to the Midwest after 20 years of service. We sat down and he brought me up to date on his life.
Today I thought I would post a piece from my short fiction file.
“God Bless Joe Sheridan” is the story of the airplane flight from Hell.
God Bless Joe Sheridan
I’VE NEVER BEEN IN JAIL, but, by God, I’ve done hard time. So have you, if you’ve ever flown coast to coast, shoehorned into a seat next to someone who could be the lovechild of Carrot Top and Casey Stengel.
You know the type. They talk incessantly, but make sense very rarely.
It was on a flight from San Francisco to Washington, D.C. I thought it was going to be a pleasure trip: see the Smithsonian, admire the classical architecture, shake my fist at Capitol Hill – all the usual stuff. Then I saw “him” trundling down the aisle of the Boeing 7-something-or-other jetliner.
“Uh oh” I said to myself. Why do bad things happen to, basically, nice guys?
I was in the window seat and I knew in my heart that, with this whole airplane to pick from, he was going to end up next to me.
The tip-off was the fact that his carry-on luggage was a cardboard box tied up with kite string.
WELL, HERE WE GO – OFF TO TEXAS! Surprisingly our flights were uneventful – which is what you want. Eventful airplane flights make the news and that is never a good thing. Things even went smoothly in our dealings with the TSA aerobic organisms. I think they were having an “On-The Job Slumber Party. They were just waving people through without even looking at them. I bet I could have walked through there toting a Howitzer and Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass. It always makes me feel so safe.
Once we got to our ultimate destination (Corpus Christi) we did what any sensible person would do – we stopped for lunch at Whataburger. It’s a tradition that goes back to the days of the Alamo and Davy Crockett I think. A Family thing, you know.
Throwback Thursday – From June 2015
QUESTION OF THE DAY – What is the difference between Jet Lag and death?
I’m going to have to think about that for a while – as soon as I am able to think again.
(Musical Interlude while brain cells attempt to realign themselves. This could take awhile.)
TODAY IS FRIDAY, THE GATEWAY TO REAL LIFE. I sat down this morning to write something brilliant, moving, hilarious, and earth shattering. After about 15 minutes of staring at a blank page I downed half of my coffee in one gulp and started looking through the detritus of links I’d saved on my phone. After another couple of minutes I came across a link that made me down the rest of my coffee.
The ranks of the Super-Rich are about to expand by one new member – a rather dorky looking Doctor from Chicago.
By this time I’m sure that everyone has heard the story about the fellow who was dragged from an aircraft, beaten, and bloodied by Private Security Officers in Chicago. I hope that the CFO of the Parent Company of United Airlines has a nice new pen handy because he is going to be writing a lot of checks in an attempt to settle a parade of lawsuits that are going to sprout up. Salivating lawyers are lined up and ready to eviscerate the “Friendly Skies.”
Throwback Thursday from February 2016
I WAS WANDERING THROUGH WAL-MART the other day and I was surprised at the number of people in there who looked like Hell warmed over. I’m not talking about the choice of clothing, if you could call it that, but their faces and the look in their eyes.
There is a line from an old Steppenwolf song about a man walking around, “With tombstones in his eyes,” and that’s what I was seeing in the aisles at Wal-Mart.
Maybe it’s a product of the mid-winter blues, or post-holiday letdown, but there were a surprising number of people pushing carts around who looked like they were ten minutes away from either collapsing or going zombie. They looked unfocused and exhausted with a look in their eyes that said, “Why bother.” I found it unsettling.
Not that I’m full of pep and energy, but these folks looked like I should try to recall my CPR training.
Inside the crowded cabin, the roar of the jet engines was only a constant vibration to him. No sound was getting through. He always flew stone deaf. It would take two days for his full hearing to return.
“I know, Dominic,” said Peeto. “Happens every time you fly.”
“Happens every time I fly.” Dominic pinched his nose and blew, trying to open his blocked ears.
“I tell you, Peeto, I hate to fly. I really hate it.” The blowing did no good.
“Yeah, it always messes up your hearing,” nodded Peeto.
“It always messes up my hearing, y’know?” He stuffed five sticks of gum into his mouth.
It was a little more than an hour into the flight from Newark to LAX and the flight attendants had already started dealing out the prepackaged, precooked, and pre-ruined meals to the passengers. It was a ritual known to the attendants as “slopping the hogs.” Somehow, that part never got into their ads.
(Advice: Never stand next to a Mime. You might end up as collateral damage or, even worse, you might get stuck inside that invisible box that all Mimes seem to have.)
Well, plans for Christmas are now in place. We will be flying down to Texas and spending a week or so visiting with Family. I can’t think of a better way to spend the Holidays. OK – maybe hitting the jackpot on the lottery while there would be better, but the odds are not in our favor.
My wife, the lovely and optimistic, Dawn will go for a “Quick Pick” lottery ticket on occasion. She doesn’t do it all the time. She has standards – the jackpot has to be at least $100 Million Dollars or it’s not worth the investment of a dollar bill. I can’t argue with that. It really is a game of “Go big or go home,” so she goes big and then goes home anyway.
ABOUT SIX OR EIGHT MONTHS AGO I began getting snail mail, E-mail, and text messages from my local Toyota dealer telling me it was time to bring in our car for its 25,000 mile check-up. Because the car had only about 16,000 miles on it at the time I really didn’t pay much attention to their communications.
They didn’t like that.