2009.12.30 A year gone
By DAVID GREEN
It’s that time of the year when I sit with a stack of 51 Observers—a year’s worth of labor—and pull out interesting items for the year-in-review edition. Occasionally I glance at page 3 and I hear myself saying, “I wrote that?”
Among my odd tales, I wrote about my little bag of gris-gris, a Christmas present from New Orleans. Voodoo in my pocket that now, a year later, has lost its magic and needs to be recharged.
I wrote of a cheery holiday movie that told what Earth will be like when humans no longer rule the planet.
The first mention of Boudreaux’s Butt Paste was published in the Observer last January. It’s for diaper rash.
The Observer received a best of its class award in the state newspaper contest. As editor, publisher, sportswriter, etc., I went to Grand Rapids to retrieve the plaque, then came home and chipped ice from an eavestrough after failing as staff janitor.
I wrote about the welcome lack of service at Altu’s Ethiopian restaurant in East Lansing, but I had trouble eating my sourdough plate.
I planned to do sleep inertia studies by ripping a quilt off a sleeping spouse, but feared for my safety.
I felt oddly sad when recalling an incident from 17 years ago when I didn’t stop to buy a soft drink for my son. Let it go, you dork.
I finally discover Skype and begin making free phone calls—to the neighbors’ house half a block away. At the moment, there are 15.7 million people signed in with Skype.
I asked if May Baskets still exist and heard back from several readers. One of them concludes that May Baskets are rarely hung these days because no one is ever home.
I reported on an odd sight at the state track meet. Because of the position of the sun, I couldn’t look at the flag during the National Anthem. Instead I looked at the crowd and saw men without hats—at a sporting event, no less. Very funny.
I provided an update on trepanation—drilling holes in the head. It’s an age-old cure for what ails you.
The subject of human taxidermy came up at a social gathering. Something useful such as an umbrella stand? Something familiar like sitting on the sofa with the remote? Think about it now while you have the time.
I cautioned that washing a ripe pear and drying it on a bath towel will get you in trouble with the spouse.
I wrote about my free sample of Frieda’s Black Garlic—mushy, odoriferous, a little terrifying. Strange stuff, but I want more.
I told about a rare trip to the mall where I encountered a clothing store clerk who had to wear a backpack all day and another whose bright blue underwear were exposed at the top of his pants. I fled.
I offered this suggestion for lice control: Mix lard and sulphur and rub along the back and tail. Unfortunately, it attracts flies.
A photo was shown of one of my proudest home repair projects: a C-clamp attached to the broken kitchen sink faucet. We finally had a handsome new faucet installed, but I miss that clamp.
Note for the next school reunion: Attach name tags to the forehead for easy identification.
I checked my pulse by attaching a drinking straw to my neck—and determined I was still functioning.
Mention of the old football bridge brought a visitor to the office who spoke of the absolute terror she experienced when her gym class headed for the park via the rickety bridge.
I don’t consider myself a cellphone refusenik, but I still don’t have one. My wife is threatening to give me one, but really, I don’t feel like talking.
I continue to get junk e-mail for Ms. Leddy and I now have an odd desire to buy a pair of FuzziBunz.
I volunteer to help judge another state’s newspaper contest and soon entered the Five Stages of Judging Day Grieving.
The year came to a close with a leg cramp and several suggestions were received, the latest delivered in person on Christmas Eve. No, it wasn’t from Santa. It came from my fake Uncle Bill: Drink more water.
That’s the end of one year, but another one is soon beginning and this space will have to be filled. Maybe you’ll read more about this item:
When I awoke from an odd dream this morning, my invisible friend asked, “Have you ever actually written a news story based on interviews you conducted in a dream?”
“Only city council stories,” I answered.
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