I have this jar of gummy vitamins. I realize that makes me 6 years old, but I live alone and always fear choking on a large pill. Then my choices would be to hope the one neighbor hasn’t nodded off, or get past the giant pit bulls at the other neighbor’s, or go to the truckers’ house for help. It’s decided. Truckers will Heimlich me.
The point is—and also I give those pit bulls treats when they’re out, so they’d likely not add injury to inhale—I just use chewables any time I can. So I get these gummy vitamins. They come in three flavors: orange, lemon and strawberry. And here’s what I do, because I am 6 years old. If I get a combination lemon and orange, that means it’s gonna be an OK day. Just OK. If I get two lemons? My day is gonna suck.
If any strawberry is in there in any way? Ooooo, it’s going to be a most excellent day. Strawberry! Yay!
But here the thing: As much as I love strawberries and even that imitation strawberry flavor—give me that strawberry Quik any day—my strawberry gummies don’t even have that much of a taste. You can taste the hell outta the citrus ones. Strawberry? It’s like maybe you thought of fruit. And isn’t that the way life goes? Things you think are going to be magnificent rarely are, and things you think will be just awful are often, eh, that wasn’t that bad.
Am very philosophical today. Am June-Paul Sartre. Am certain he’d be riveted by my gummy observations.
Anyway, how was your weekend? I can’t remember a damn thing about mine, which shows you the level of rivet.
…I just scrolled through my photos to jog memory.
I made a curried chicken salad, and who even am I? My Aunt Mary was making one, and I texted, Oooo, how do you do that and she told me and I copied her. Except she uses dried cranberries but I can’t have dried fruit. Sulphites.
Also, this weekend was my uncle’s funeral. My mother’s oldest brother, my Uncle John, died. They had a funeral and offered the caveat that anyone who was too afraid to attend would not be judged. So I ended up watching it streaming on Facebook, and my Uncle Leo and my Aunt Bette—both of whom are former spouses of the family and we’ve kept them—watched it with me. We had a viewing party. They even listed Uncle Leo and Aunt Bette in the obituary and being in-laws, which was adorable.
A viewing party for a funeral is weird. I mean, any time you have “party” and “funeral” together is weird. Once my Uncle Bill was held up by a funeral procession and he came home and said, “I couldn’t get here because there was one of those, oh, those, PARADES. You know, a death parade.”
At one point this weekend, I got so bored that I went behind the chair I’m sitting in currently and lay in Edsel’s dog bed just to see my house from a new angle.
This concerned the Eds. He’s doing just fine, by the way, off his heart medicine and when I think of the TEN MONTHS I needlessly gave him pills. Not to mention they were $200 a month.
Also, I put away some of my clothes using my new matching hangers. It turns out that’s, like, a chore. I had to throw out the old wire hangers, that I think were occasionally from as far back as dry cleaners in Seattle. God, I had a lowly receptionist job there and had to wear dry-clean-only clothes. I should have made them pay for that. They had a service at work where someone would come get your dry-cleaning and bring it back, but it was cheaper to go to Ace Cleaner in my neighborhood. I’m going to hazard a guess that Ace Cleaner is no longer in business in my hip little hood. Hang on and let me Google.
Nope, it’s not there, but aw, man, I miss that neighborhood now. It was just burgeoning when I lived there. So you’d have a diaper-cleaning warehouse next to a coffee shop. Now it just looks like the whole thing is cool. Dangit.
I also looked at old pictures because did I mention I’ve been cooped up for 6 months now? Anyway, this is Grammy’s cat and this is also me. Why did the cat have to be fed near my head? Was this safe? Also, my grandmother, who had some nerve, wanted my name to be Shelly, so she just referred to me as Shelly, here, even though I had a name. I also like how she TYPED the picture caption. Once a secretary in the Pentagon, always a secretary in the Pentagon.
Also? The cat gets top billing.
Oh my god, I gotta go. I leave you with one more old picture of me; hang on.
First of all, I remember everything about this. A lot of kids were out with the flu; hence the chairs being up. That’s Phillip Rathbun in front of me. Sheila Nash, with whom I am still friends, in front of him. Normie Winterstein is the cute boy next to our teacher, Mr. Keup. And Robin someone or other who said she was allergic to tomatoes but one day she ate tomato soup and someone, possibly Sheila, pointed out this discrepancy and Robin said, “I eat tomato soup because I like tomato soup.” I always admired this comeback.
Also, the lunchboxes. That first big one was mine: It was a Peanuts lunchbox. I must’ve gotten there first that day. The farm one belonged to Tomi Slagle. I can’t recall who owned the Shawn Cassidy one but my guess is Kim Schemp.
If I hadn’t had ADD, this brain would have gone far. I believe that.
I also remember that felt banner Mr. Keup made about a hunter’s paradise. I never quite understood what it meant and I still don’t, quite. It was the Trova, at Pace, Columbus, of my school hours.
All right, I have to go. I already have two giant things to do that are due today and have angina over them.