2009.05.28 One of us is becoming a geezer and it’s not the cautious man

Written by David Green.


It was close to 5:30 p.m. Friday when I called David at the Observer office to see what he had going on that night. We usually check in with each other on Thursdays and Fridays—the library closes at 5 and the Observer at 5:30 p.m.

Sometimes, it seems like David attends meetings or shoots photos every night of the week. But not that night. He was ready to leave the office and just wanted to watch a movie after eating dinner.

Dinner...it always slows us down and then there are dishes to wash, dishes that we just dirtied, dishes that have piled up...

Suddenly, I remembered Liz had given us an eggplant parmesan and it was still in the freezer. The evening suddenly fell into place. We could pop the eggplant in the oven and go for a walk while it baked.

“Whoever gets home first has to take the eggplant parmesan out of the freezer,” I said, as we were about to hang up.

“Whoever gets home second has to wash dishes,” he said. He quickly followed that with a “Goodbye!” and abruptly hung up.

Even though I knew I’d be the one washing dishes...it always takes me longer to leave the library than it does David to leave the office...I still burst out laughing, imagining him racing out of the office and jumping on his bike to beat me home.

I’m a good seven years younger than David, but I swear I can’t keep up with him...both mentally and physically he is more agile. He’s quick and witty and he seems to walk and jog forever without running out of breath.

At the track Monday night we jogged a couple 100-meter stretches as we walked a mile or so. This was following a day in the yard, messing in the flower beds, pretending to plant a vegetable garden in a section of the yard quickly being overrun by David’s wacko tree bushes.

Every single part of my body ached as we jogged the first 100 meters...my feet, my thighs, my knees, the backs of my knees...I felt ancient.

After we jogged the second 100 meters, I was still panting 200 meters later. I didn’t realize I was until I heard David pretend he was panting...he usually never makes any noise so I knew he was making fun of me. I wholloped him one and that put an end to his showmanship.

But then, in other ways, he’s a regular geezer. Or, at least, more cautious than I’d guess he’d be.

On the way home from a one-day conference in East Lansing last week, extreme fatigue overtook me so I stopped at a roadside rest area for a short nap. I left a message on the answering machine letting David know I’d be arriving with dinner, but later than expected.

“Don’t you know you should never take naps at rest areas when you’re alone? You could wake up with a gun pointing at your face!” he practically yelled at me, when I walked in the door.

“No felafel for you,” I wanted to say.

And when we prepared to leave the house for a walk that Friday night, he refused to put the eggplant parmesan in the oven.

“You would leave the house with the oven on?” he asked, incredulous.

“Well, sure! I trust the oven,” I replied.

It’s a new stove and the oven has never been a problem. The burners, on the other hand...on a regular basis they fill me with buyer’s remorse.

“I wouldn’t leave the house with any of the burners on, but the oven will be fine,” I said and headed to the bathroom, thinking I had convinced him.

We were rounding the track for the third of six times when it hit me: Did the eggplant parmesan end up in the oven?

“I didn’t do it, did you?” I asked David.

“I had no intention of doing it,” he said.

Well, he’s not throwing caution to the wind like I would. But at least he’s not forgetful.

I, on the other hand, had every intention of making sure the eggplant made it into the oven...It just took three laps around the track to jog my memory. Looks like my brain is failing at the same rate as my body.

  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.
  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.base Ball
    UMPIRE Thomas Henthorn tosses the bat between team captains Mikayla Price and Chuck Piskoti of Flint’s Lumber City Base Ball Club. Following the 1860 rules, after the bat was grabbed by the captains, captains’ hands advanced to the top of the bat—one hand on top of the other. The captain whose hand ended up on top decided who would bat first. Additional photos of Sunday’s game appear on page 12 of this week’s Observer. The contest was organized in conjunction with Stair District Library’s Hometown Teams exhibit that runs through Nov. 20.
  • Front.chat
    VALUE OF ATHLETICS—Morenci graduate John Bancroft (center) takes a turn at the microphone during a chat session at the opening of the Hometown Teams exhibit at Stair District Library. Clockwise to his left is John Dillon, Jed Hall, Jim Bauer, Joe Farquhar, George Hollstein, George Vereecke and Mike McDowell. Thomas Henthorn (at the podium) kicked off the conversation. Henthorn, a University of Michigan–Flint professor, will return to Morenci this Sunday to lead a game of vintage base ball at the school softball field.
  • Front.cross
    HUDSON RUNNER Jacob Morgan looks toward the top of the hill with dismay during the tough finish at Harrison Lake State Park. Fayette runner Jacob Garrow focuses on the summit, also, during the Eagle Invitational cross country run Saturday morning. Continuing rain and drizzle made the course even more challenging. Results of the race are in this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.
  • Front.hose Testing
    HOSE safety—The FireCatt hose testing company from Troy put Morenci Fire Department hose to the test Monday morning when Mill Street was closed to traffic. The company also checks nozzles and ladders for wear in an effort to keep fire fighters safe while on calls.

Weekly newspaper serving SE Michigan and NW Ohio - State Line Observer ©2006-2016