Long limbs and ferries should never be together

Published 10:44 am Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Echoes from the Loafers Club Meeting

I’ve seen it all.

I’ll bet nothing surprises you anymore.

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Everything surprises me. I’ve forgotten most everything I ve seen.

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: A perfect national exercise program could be instituted by eliminating restaurant drive-through lanes.

Folded on a ferry

I have long limbs. I don’t always know what to do with my lengthy legs and big feet. When I park my carcass in a busy area, my clodhoppers tend to trip passing people.

I was on a ferry traveling from Haines to Juneau, Alaska. A ferry is a delightful way to travel. This particular one was the Fairweather, 235-feet long with room for 250 people and 36 vehicles. It traveled the Alaska Marine Highway System at 32 knots per hour (nearly 37 MPH). It carried many passengers, including 90 students from the University of Alaska Southeast. My wife, a friend (Judy Hall Jacobson), and I marveled at the contortions that the students assumed in order to gather sleep. They folded, twisted, curled, and bent in ways those over 40 could only remember. It was an advanced yoga class for sleepers. I glanced at one contorted young person and I suffered a stiff neck and a pulled hamstring.

Booking it

I love to read. Beaucoup books are my constant companions. I sometimes lick my finger to aid in turning the pages of a book. I remember when I was a boy watching my teachers doing the same thing. I thought it was an odd. What age we are when we begin to lick our digital page-turners?

An expensive flower

Sara Aeikens of Albert Lea showed me an artificial flower that cost her $264. She was buying it in an airport when she should have been boarding a plane. She missed her flight and it cost an extra $264 to get home. At least the flower is a perennial.

No more Pontiacs

I drive a Pontiac. I have to. Pontiac stands for Poor Old Nincompoop Thinks It’s A Cadillac. General Motors has ceased its production of the Pontiac line after 84 years. I miss them already. GTO, Firebird, Chieftain, LeMans, Bonneville, and Catalina. One million Pontiacs were sold in 1968. In the movie Smokey and the Bandit (1977), Burt Reynolds drove a Firebird Trans Am. No more Pontiacs? This Poor Old Nincompoop Thinks It s A Crime.

Winter woes

It was a big day. I had found two identical snowflakes. I would be doing some serious myth-busting at my school’s show-and-tell. I attempted to get the snowflakes to the classroom, but to my chagrin, the school bus heater picked the wrong day to produce heat.

Christmas catalogs

The wishbooks arrived well before Christmas, so there was plenty of time for a person to fall into a wishing frenzy. I had risible aspirations for gifts under the tree. The mailings came from Sears, Penney’s, and Monkey Wards. They were Christmas catalogs each one was a Santa Claus with page numbers. At Yuletide, I dragged out the Herter’s (from Waseca) catalog. That catalog was a compendium of outdoors equipment and sporting goods supplies and an eclectic mix that ran from fishing lures to camping supplies to duck calls to snowmobiles to boats to eccentric books. With wishbooks appearing in our mailbox, it made my walks back from getting the mail hopeful ones.

Meeting adjourned

William Arthur Ward wrote, When we seek to discover the best in others, we somehow bring out the best in ourselves.