Tag Archive for: Humor



I may be a little bit distracted.  I went into the kitchen to make a quick cup of coffee while I pondered the most recent in a series of unfortunate events.  When I heard the plunk of a K-cup instead of the hiss of brewed coffee landing in my cup, I brought my full attention to the task at hand.

“Not really paying attention, are we?” I asked.  We being just me,  I answered.  “Nope, afraid not.”

I looked at the situation from the point of view of someone who did not know me well, really well.  “Early onset Alzheimer’s?” they might ask.  (Not that early if truth be told.)  No, I didn’t forget how to make coffee, I just went kind of autopilot, but sent the K-cup in the wrong direction.

Going in the wrong way is definitely not a new thing.  For one, I was born devoid of a sense of direction. Case in point:  Once, at a restaurant, I walked out of the ladies’ room straight into the men’s room because it seemed like that was the right direction.  The inhabitants quickly assured me it was not.

More pertinent, though, is the fact that if I am distracted, my body takes over and does things without consulting my mind.  To illustrate this, I will mention some of the many places I have visited –accidentally.  My sister and I and our kids used to go on vacation together.  We once went to Arkansas to see Graceland.  Another time, we were headed to Trenton, N. J. to see the Liberty Bell.  We spent a long time on the loop around Washington, D.C., calling out, “Kids, Washington Monument,” each time was passed that venerable edifice.  (Think Chevy Chase in “European Vacation. ” If you haven’t seen it, watch it so you will understand.)  We regularly missed exits because we were talking and, thus, distracted.  We did eventually see the Liberty Bell and Graceland, but we saw more of the country in route than we intended.

But this goes deeper than missing an exit.  I can remember losing an entire cup of fresh coffee when I was attending college, a single mom in my early 30s.  After looking in every room, I finally gave up and went on to class, completely perplexed and with no coffee.  A month later, I found the cup — now topped with a green furry layer of yuck – on a shelf in the coat closet.  I immediately remembered exactly what had happened.  I  had taken a sip of coffee, then thought about my camera for photography class, went in the closet, absentmindedly set the cup down, got the camera, walked out to put it with my books, then went to finish getting ready for the day.  Sometime in that process, I thought about my coffee and started the search.

Long before that, as a teenager, I would do things like forget I was making a sandwich and start sweeping the kitchen.  Of course, I was in the throes of puppy love at the time, which is almost the definition of distracted.

Looking at all this, I realized that with my history, we really won’t know when or if to worry about Alzheimer’s.  One coffee pod dropped into a cup instead of the Keurig machine is really no indication of trouble on the horizon.

I went to take a shower, pondering this, but with no great concern.  As I was rinsing, I noted the peppermint smell in the air and realized I had just taken my entire shower with shampoo instead of body wash.  Distracted?  Alzheimer’s?  Oh well, either way, I’ll probably be the best smelling resident of the home!

Now, I’ve never been an activist. I am somewhat apolitical, or at least laissez faire. I live by the Paul Simon credo: “I get all the news I need from the weather report.” Don’t be haters. There is room in this world for Simonites.

But my point is that all of that has changed. I have now taken up not only a cause, but arms to defend that cause. “Freedom of the press?” you may ask, since I have a journalism background. Nah, that will work itself out. Freedom of speech, since I am a communications major and a writer? Nope, I hear plenty of free speech going on. The right to bear arms? Well, yes, but only incidental to my main cause.

I was on the front porch this morning in the first rays of sunlight, actively fighting for the rights of birds to enjoy their feeders and their supply of gourmet, species-specific seeds unmolested by marauding bands of rogue squirrels. There are oak trees in the yard with a billion acorns, for heaven’s sake. The lawless rodents have no need to go seed rustling. It’s pure greed and a lack of regard for their fellow  – ah – phylum mates. It really comes down to a class war, kinda like the Clantons and the Cowboy Gang against innocent ranchers and townsfolk. On the battleground of my little Fairhope habitat, the Sciuridae Family has become the enemy.

So that is why I was on the porch in my PJs in the dim pre-dawn light, wild-eyed and tousle-headed, armed only with random shoes for throwing at the gang leader. I do have a BB gun somewhere, but no ammunition, and I have packed up most of my belongings for an impending move. What I DID have at hand was a collection of shoes taken off at the front door, and the first cobbled missile hurled from the porch sent Curly Bill Sciuridae scrambling up the nearest oak.

After seven more forays toward the feeders, all defeated with footwear, the Sciuridaes had turned back and an array of blue jays, cardinals, and chickadees were breakfasting peacefully on black-oil sunflower seeds and such. I had regathered my ammunition and had a cup of fresh-ground coffee in my hand. I brought my laptop out so I could work and still remain vigilant. I didn’t dare take time out for a shower, so I was still garbed in nightwear with my hair sticking up on one side and plastered down on the other. Peace reigned in my world, though, so I was content.

My attention turned from the birds to the young school children who were now making their way from the neighboring cul-de-sacs toward the bus stop near my house. I smiled and waved at the ones familiar to me, and at the parents who accompanied the youngest ones. Totally distracted by the morning ritual, I failed to see Curly Bill and Johnny Ringo sneaking in from the leafy cover of the overhead canopy. I sighed happily, then turned my head to gaze on my little flock, and there they were. The Sciuridae ring leaders were perched on top of the feeder nearest me, stuffing their nasty, greedy, furry little cheeks and staring at me in total defiance.

In my recovery of the shoes, I had discovered a cache of magnolia pods, and I quickly catapulted one of these toward the outlaws. They fled and I chased them from my yard to the neighboring trees. Maybe I was bleary eyed from doing battle before coffee, but I would almost swear Curly Bill had a red bandana tied around his hind leg. “Run, you lily livered gray coated fiends. RUN!” I yelled. Caught up in the moment, I continued, “Tell all the other curs the law’s comin’! You tell ‘em I’M coming… and hell’s coming with me, you hear?” Then I nodded to the startled young man who was hastily moving his four small children to the other side of the road and hurried inside to unpack a big box of shoes.