It’s again time for some uncannily brilliant observances and a column revisit or two. As you know, once I get started on these mini-manifestos there’s no stopping me, so it’s best to just stand back and let me finish.
• So far I’ve only had a couple people twist my devil’s-advocate suggestion of civilian assault rifles possibly not being prudent into a liberal rant for gun control. Of course, the ol’ “slippery slope” and Hitler’s rise to power via gun confiscation was mentioned, but so far I have no bullets in vital organ bullet holes.
I’d say anytime a writer can address something controversial and escape with minimal outrage, it’s a success — and sometimes educational. Did you know fully automatic weapons can be legally possessed — IF said widow-maker was manufactured before 1986. Well, I now do.
• I believe it a literal impossibility not to grossly overeat to the point of gastric discomfort at a Chinese buffet. I’ll never forget a guy named Darryl who delivered my shingles a few years ago asking, “Have you eaten at that Chinese buffet yet? It’s great; you can eat till you’re sick.” Yes, you can, Darryl. And I do.
• Like I really needed another addiction! I rue the day last year when I tackled my first crossword puzzle. Sure, it’s a delightful way to pass time on the can, but my OCD can’t just let it go at that. Long after I’ve flushed, I’ll be driving around muttering, “Think, dang it, think! Six-letter word for ‘teletubby?’”
• Watching real-life crime shows on ID Channel painfully reminds me of the rampant, pure evil out there. Watching Fox News shockingly reminds me that evil thrives in every city and even small towns. Sutherland Springs, Texas, is so small there isn’t even a main street, yet even a Baptist church couldn’t shelter residents from the evil.
• It had been “everything but the kitchen sink.” Now that the kitchen faucet began leaking weeks ago, it’s official that every single plumbing apparatus in my townhouse is in some way dysfunctional. With the downstairs toilet never flushing successfully more than three successive times, I handle a plunger more times than most chefs handle a spatula!
The upstairs toilet has been dry as a bone for years, I gotta reach under the bathroom sink to manipulate the stopper, and now the kitchen spigot spews. I have no idea which is causing the two slow drips from basement pipes, but they’ve now filled three 10-gallon kitty litter buckets.
In an attempt to troubleshoot, I took turns twisting the valves shut in both sinks and toilet, but the experiment was pathetically futile. In fact, the basement drips — unlike my bowel movements — became even more regular. If my house weren’t so shamefully messy, I’d be half-tempted to call in a plumber.
• Is church humor forbidden in scripture? By no means. Do I possibly go a little too far and often with my trademark church gag, shared with whoever might be sitting next to me? Quite possibly, I say to thee.
My favorite routine is to reach into the offering plate when it’s passed and mock grab a fistful of cash while saying pleasantly, “Don’t mind if I do.” I deviate occasionally to keep it fresh, as I did weeks ago when I whispered to Jane Miller seated beside me, “I never take more than I need. I refuse to take advantage.” Sure it’s lame, but as long as they keep laughing, I’ll keep going back to the well. I find it irresistible.
One sober-minded, Christian stiff-neck once scolded me: “Nowhere in scripture does it mention Jesus ever laughing.” Well, there’s probably no recorded instance of him even smiling, for that matter. Maybe detailed emotions aren’t relevant enough to warrant mention, but are you telling me even God didn’t chuckle a little when Job would step on a rake and get whacked on the forehead?
I’ll admit the timing of my offering plate gag could be in question, what with our CMA church being robbed recently. Someone brazenly made off with the heavy safe sometime after morning services, affording the possibility of an inside job. I’m proud to say, however, I was nowhere near a church that Sunday.
There are those rare times when a tempting prank is better left on the back burner, like in the ’90s when I accompanied best buddy Frank Rozek into Wells Fargo Bank. During our turn at the counter, I picked up on Frank’s cue when he whispered “You don’t have the gun?” and replied, “No, I thought you brought it!”
If looks could kill, my friends, it surely would have been THE END.