A hungry cat would eat onions

Published 11:42 am Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Echoes from the Loafers’ Club meeting:

“I inspected your car completely. I tested it as if it were a candidate for the Supreme Court. I checked the gumbo joint, the clovis pin, the universal pellets, and the larval valve. I dropped the transmission, rebuilt the block, and adjusted the frammydeuce. It took forever, but I finally found your problem.”

“What was it?”

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“You had a flat tire.”

Driving by the Bruces

I have two wonderful neighbors — both named Bruce — who live across the road from each other. Whenever I pass their driveways, thoughts occur to me, such as: If it’s downhill after the age of 40, why does it seem uphill?

The “check engine” light

The “check engine” light is glowing on the dashboard of my car. A mechanic told me that as long as it is not red or blinking, I’m probably OK driving it. A friend advised me to cover the light with duct tape. Another told me that only an idiot depends upon idiot lights. I try to ignore the light but I cannot. It’s not a rental car.

Herding cats

I travel frequently, moving about the country and speaking to various groups. This time, my lovely bride was the one on the road. Each year, she and approximately 147 women with whom she graduated get together and jam into a cabin on a lake for a few days. My wife told me to make sure to feed the cats in her absence. Cats are finicky eaters, but my father claimed they would eat onions if they were hungry enough. I had noticed that Ethel and Purl (we named the cats so we could call them names when they wouldn’t come when called) ate only one-fourth of what my wife fed them. I gave them only half of their normal portions. They still ate the same amount as they had before and remained pleased at the quantity left uneaten.

The wedding

Why did the chicken cross the road? Because it didn’t have to wait for a flagman. Roadwork abounds this and every summer. Some of the roads in my area are being smoothed. It’s a good thing. I no longer feel like a bobblehead as I drive those highways. The rough roads remind me of my wedding. No, my marriage hasn’t been a rough road. What the rough roads remind me of was the old wedding custom of something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue. Something old was my car. Something new was my wife. Something borrowed was a tire. Something blew was the borrowed tire. That made for a rough road.

From the family files

My mother put things in good places where we would always remember where they were. We seldom remembered where they were. We searched long and hard for things concealed in good places. Mother remained optimistic and said, “What one can hide, one can find.”

A cornucopia

Zucchini—here today, more tomorrow. Zucchini is the rabbit of the vegetable world. I’d give the zucchini to my neighbors on the sly, but I have more summer squash than I have neighbors and I want to keep the neighbors I have.

School is cool

The youngster was excited about the beginning of the school year. I asked her if she remembered everything she had learned in school last year.

She replied, “No, but that’s OK. I don’t go to that school anymore.”

Reading T-shirts

I met the young boy in Henderson. He was wearing a T-shirt that read, “My mom rocks!”

I asked his mother about the shirt. She told me that it was her son’s favorite shirt and that he wore it every single day.

His father added, “That’s because she pays him to wear it.”

Nature notes

Don’t touch baby birds because the mother will detect your scent and abandon them. Our mothers told us that. They also told us about boogeties and things that go bump in the night. They had reasoned correctly that such things would keep us from dangerous places. They knew that we were better off scared to death than dead. Their mothers told them the same things. Birds generally identify their young the same ways we do—by appearance and sound. Don’t handle baby birds needlessly, but it’s OK to pick up a fallen nestling and put it back in a nest or to carry a fledgling out of danger and place it in a tree or shrub.