Al Batt: Aging is all in the mind

Published 9:50 am Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Echoes from the Loafers’ Club Meeting

What is the soup du jour?

It’s the soup of the day.

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I know that, but what is it?


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 miracle drug is one that costs less than it did last year. Texting requires much abbrev. It’s not a good idea to make french fries, cheese curds and gravy a part of your daily poutine.

The cafe chronicles

It was the calm before the coffee.

One of the Knights of the Bent Fork admitted to having been to a lutefisk feed.

“Did you lose a bet?” asked another.

The waitress brought ice cream a la mode. They were out of pie.

She asked, “Is anything all right?”

Old Man McGinty

“How are you doing?” I asked Old Man McGinty, the youngest Old Man McGinty ever.

“Worse,” he replied. He owns a Fitbit. According to his doctor, that Fitbit is his only fit bit. “I’m getting old,” he added.

“Aging is all in the mind,” I said.

“True,” said Old Man McGinty. “It’s the first thing to go.”

Hello Halloween

Ima Goner and Barry D’Alive announced their engagement and a pumpkin weighed in at 1,918.5 pounds at the 2016 Stillwater Harvest Festival, setting a state record. Our smallest state, Rhode Island, produced the largest pumpkin ever grown in North America at 2,261.5 pounds. A Belgian pumpkin weighing 2,623.5 pounds, set a world’s record, previously held by a Swiss pumpkin that had tipped the scales at 2,323.7 pounds.

From here and there

I’d sat in my car as a train ran on an apparent endless loop in front of me. I finally pulled into a hotel parking lot. The “vacancy” sign had been painted on the wall of the hotel. A nearby bakery led me into temptation.

I went to a Friends of the Library book sale. I looked at boxes of books that I’d donated. I’d run out of room. I tried not to buy any of them back. As a rap song might say, “I like big books and I cannot lie.”

My mother-in-law was a big winner on one of the state lottery’s scratch-off tickets. She’ll be counseling with various investment gurus as to where she should invest the $14. Good luck runs in my wife’s family. They marry well.

In local news

Business is slow at Home Alone Depot.

Florist guarantees that if you’re not satisfied, you’ll get your money back because he believes in taking the floral high ground.

County puts stepladders in deepest potholes. It’s cheaper than repair and guarantees that no motorists would be stranded at the bottoms.

Ask Al

“Why did the chicken cross the road?” To show the opossum that it could be done.

“Does your car get good mileage?” Exactly 5,280 feet per mile.

“Do deer whistles work?” I installed them a few years ago. I still hit a deer. I’m thinking of taking them off my shirt and putting them on my car.

Nature notes

“Why are men called old coots?” It’s an outrage that we should be called anything other than handsome, smart, sweet and for dinner. I’m not sure why we’re called old coots, but the bird, the American coot, is also called a mudhen. There is a minor league baseball team called the Toledo Mudhens, a favorite of Corporal Klinger on “MASH.” I’ve watched the Mudhens play. It was most enjoyable. Some of the veterans were long in the tooth, but I wouldn’t call them old coots. I’d call them old Mudhens. With the meaning “fool,” usually but not necessarily old, coot had its first written citation in 1766. There is no fool like an old fool, but every man has promise. A coot is a dark-gray waterbird resembling a duck. Their actions appear silly at times, but I’m sure that coots find it offensive when they hear someone calling foolish men old coots.

“My father said that when the snowbirds arrived, we’d have snow in four weeks. Are the bird’s predictions accurate?” They are if your father said they were. If you get trackable snow before the snowbird had predicted it, that means that the dark-eyed junco was there earlier and you failed to see it.

Meeting adjourned

A kind word belongs to everyone.