Al Batt: On the lookout for a watch

Published 6:04 pm Tuesday, August 2, 2022

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Echoes from the Loafers’ Club Meeting

I signed up for the neighborhood watch.

Good for you.

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I hope it’s a Rolex.

Driving by Bruce’s drive

I have a wonderful neighbor named Bruce. Whenever I pass his drive, thoughts occur to me. I was dressed as if I were on my way to clown college. I was on a walk to find the time to stop and smell the skunks. Just before beginning my hike on a gravel road, I’d looked at a couple of baseball box scores, both involving Los Angeles teams. The Dodgers moved from Brooklyn. The term “Trolley Dodgers” was attached to the Brooklyn ball club due to the abundant trolley cars weaving their way through the borough of Brooklyn. The name was shortened to “Dodgers” and the team took that nickname to Los Angeles. In Spanish, los angeles means “the angels.” Therefore, the Los Angeles Angels are The Angels Angels. I met no angels on my walk on that rural road. I met biting insects. The mosquitoes were nearly nonexistent this year, but on this day, the mosquito was my spirit animal. We spend our lives waiting for something to happen and then we’re bitten by mosquitoes. That’s something happening. I used to run on that road, now I outdistance mosquitoes by walking briskly, but whenever I stopped to jot down a passing thought, they found me. I learned the importance of writing things down early in life. Ideas are fleeting. We forget things. I paused my walk and the skeeters attacked. I couldn’t dodge them all and they were no angels. The sun had blinked and welcomed the biters. I couldn’t see my shadow and I thought I’d gone home. I became a popular attraction for the n=biting insects. It was as Lily Tomlin said, “Things are going to get a lot worse before they get worse.”

The following day, I traveled a long road in my car. “A ring around the sun or moon means rain or snow is coming soon.”

The wind was from the south, but a torrential downpour fell around me from every direction. It rained cats, dogs, hamsters, gerbils, ferrets, hedgehogs and white mice. I was eager to get home as I felt like the third monkey getting on Noah’s Ark. Not wanting to leave me alone in the dark, roadside reflector posts kept their eyes on me as I drove home.

A wallet named Waldo

I walked past shelves filled with energy drinks and wondered how anyone anywhere was sleeping. I found a man’s wallet in a  grocery store. His driver’s license said he was from Arizona. I hoped he hadn’t made it far down the road before he noticed his billfold’s absence. I likewise hoped his panic was short-lived as I left it with the store’s staff.

My neighbor Crandall’s plan for good health

Crandall has a permit to carry a concealed jelly doughnut, but he has cut back on his intake of green meat. He doesn’t stand in the sun when he can sit in the shade.

Sweet corn and snowfalls

For every fog in August, there will be a day of snowfall in winter. That made the sweet corn I was enjoying even more of a delicacy. The varieties were Sweetness, Cappuccino and Vitality. Each bite was enough to make me wish for an endless summer.

Lutefisk lament

Mother advised me to avoid eating lutefisk. She had reason. As a teenager, she worked at White’s Grocery in Algona, Iowa. Lutefisk was kept in a wooden barrel outside the store. Dogs couldn’t resist raising a leg on the barrel. Like every mother, she told me I should try foods before dismissing them as something I didn’t like. She never tried the stuff, yet thought lutefisk was cod awful.

Nature notes

I don’t see white-tailed jackrabbits anymore. I grew up with cattle dogs. They were smart but insisted on chasing the big hares that leaped 10 feet and ran 40 mph.

I watched an opossum meander. What’s a nervous tick? It’s one that sees an opossum headed its way. How many ticks do they eat? Who knows, but Rick Ostfeld, Senior Scientist, Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies said, “Opossums are extraordinarily good groomers it turns out—we never would have thought that ahead of time—but they kill the vast majority—more than 95% percent of the ticks that try to feed on them. So these opossums are walking around the forest floor, hoovering up ticks right and left, killing over 90% of these things, and so they are really protecting our health.”

Meeting adjourned

Never let an unkindness keep you from being kind.