I just made a realization. This will be my one-hundred-seventy-fifth post and I rarely talk about myself. I happen to be one of the most amazing things I can imagine. In fact, I find myself an extremely fascinating, witty, highly intelligent, brilliant conversationalist. My wife goes so far as to say I’m a legend in my own mind. Well, normally a humble guy like me wouldn’t go that far but heck, sometimes you just have to admit the truth. I guess I am.
I’m an ordinary guy who likes ordinary things. I live in a humble cottage in the suburbs next to a wooded area that slopes down a ravine to a small river. Which, I might add causes no end of problems. I mean, back where all those trees stand is full of nature. Animals live there. Deer, fox, racoons, and squirrels just to name a few, and every one of them is against me. I can’t imagine why? But they are.
You think I’m kidding, but it’s the truth. You see I like to watch the birds. In fact, I feed the birds all the time. I’ve met many people who enjoy the same thing. Sadly, my neighbors take it way too far. Trey and Coco put out corn and salt for the deer. Frank throws out peanuts and fruits for squirrels and other small critters. He photographs them and then sells the prints. All these creatures hang around so much, they scare away my birds. The only respite I get is when John grills out.
Not even animals messed with John. John is a chef by trade and also teaches culinary arts at the local college. If you’ve ever wanted to be invited to a cook-out it’s John’s. I remember one time he taught thirty students to make sausage, and ended up with fifty pounds of the most wonderful stuff you can’t believe. Well, I don’t want to say I take advantage of friends but I left with about six pounds for myself.
Further on the plus side, is that when John grilled none of the other animals will come around so the birds all show up in my yard. The display is always great. Oh, did I mention John buys expensive beer as well? Yes, John is the best neighbor in the world. That’s why it was so terrible when he moved.
I went over to his house and pleaded with him. He just kept going on about how he just got a job as head chef in a five-star restaurant in San Francisco, and didn’t seem to care a thing about me. I thought that was extremely selfish of him. I was going to tell him what I thought of his rudeness, but found out his students had baked fresh bread and made lobster bisque, so decided against it. Besides my mother always told me, you really shouldn’t criticize people with your mouth full of their food.
So, there we were, three months ago, watching the trucks carrying John and family away. I know we’ll send emails back and forth, especially when the bisque runs out, but it will never be the same. Also, what will become of my birds when he and Shelly aren’t outside to chase away the critters. Sad face.
John’s house sold in a heartbeat. I was sure it had something to do with all the good food that was cooked there. I can still smell the au-gratin. When I met the new guy, Roger Jablonski, I was positive of it. He certainly is a jovial man who likes to eat. However, that’s not Roger’s most outstanding quality. Roger is a money man. An old school financial planner who has just learned the glories of working from home.
Every morning at eight-thirty Roger emerges from the house with two small fluffballs that look like walking dustmops. He carries a Walt Disney World to-go mug, I assume is full of coffee, and takes his smiling face out for a walk. The thing is, he is also wearing a long-sleeved oxford shirt and power tie, along with printed fleece pajama pants and slippers. In just a few short weeks, he has become the fashion king of my street.
As it happens, I normally leave before Roger does, so I missed the morning ritual for a long while. My children told me of it. When I saw it for myself, I actually asked him about it. He laughed and told me he always had Zoom calls in the mornings and no one cared. I said sure but how about outside? He just laughed at me and told me I was too conservative. I was taken aback! I Mr. Ohh! Too Conservative?? Then I looked around, Mrs. Grimsley was also walking her mutt wearing a long flannel dressing gown, and the guy with the two greyhounds, one street over, had on a tee shirt and sweats. What had I been missing?
Here I was leaving the house at six in the morning never knowing that there was a veritable army of pajama walkers moving around my neighborhood just two hours later. These folks walk so slow, like they have nothing else to do. I consider myself open minded but what would happen if all the other early folks knew about this? It’s like my street lives in two different dimensions. The folks who create science fiction would never believe this stuff. I should write the movie, Attack of The Pajama Wearing Morning Zombies, but people would say it wasn’t believable. Maybe if I said they walked among the hellhounds? Naw, the tiny little dogs these wanders have, barely count as hounds, although the yipping is from Hell. It’s just too crazy to wrap your head around. I was taught you never leave the house until fully dressed and with all these P.J.’s on the street I’m beginning to doubt my very being.
I went back in the house with my world in a tizzy until I noticed that the animals weren’t coming around. They didn’t like the nightclothes either. Obviously, deer have discriminating taste and won’t associate with humans wandering the streets in their P.J.’s. I never knew they could be so astute. Not that my opinion went up about them. I was still disgusted, and wanted them to stay away from my bird feeders. Then again birds don’t mind the colors as long as the people don’t go in the back yard. I looked out the window at a plethora of birds. For the uninitiated, that means there were a lot of them. Sorry, I had to use that word from my Word-A-Day calendar.
So, here’s the quandary, another calendar word; Do I completely forget all my early training and accept these underdressed usurpers meandering through the streets so I can see more birds? Or should I contact the Home Owners Association and have them ejected for the bums they are, and consequently fight critters from now till forever?
Then again, I’m not to fond of the association and fleece pants are comfortable. If you can’t beat ‘em join ‘em
Actually, that wasn’t a very difficult quandary at all.
Thank you for laughing and Please read a little longer
Thank you all for laughing with me, but I need to be serious. Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency is a genetic disease which rots the liver and lungs. There is no cure. The only help for people is to have a weekly infusion of proteins to stop the spread. For the next few months I will be taking all my proceeds and donating them to the Alpha-1 Foundation who are searching for a cure to this horrible malady. You can give here or for more information go to Alpha-1.org Thanks for supporting world laughter, and finding a cure. Laugh On