Learning through Laughter

Bob Owen, Humorist

You’ve got to tell me the truth, now.  If you’re over 60, do you break things? I insist on a “yes” answer.  I don’t mean when you throw a TV during a presidential debate and it breaks the china cabinet.  Some things can’t be helped.  I mean when you’re just minding your own business and stuff breaks.

Last night, I finished a glass of water and set it solidly on the kitchen counter.  It fell off the counter and smattered into a bazillion pieces.  I expressed my disbelief that the glass fell off.  My wife expressed her disbelief that I had put it solidly in the middle of the counter. 

Gremlins.  That’s the answer.  The only feasible answer.  It couldn’t be failing eyesight.  Or bad distance judging.  Or arthritic hands that don’t grip as they once did.  NO!  Those are not valid reasons.  After all, I’m only 61. 

A couple of weeks ago, we bought new saucers, salad plates and cups to match some casual dinner plates we had.  We had 10 plates and ordered 8 of everything else. (We’re not stupid.  We gave ourselves a two-plate lead way.)   Dishes were rearranged in the cabinets to make space.  I got out a dinner plate and reached up for a glass.  As I pulled out one glass, my hand knocked out another one, which fell and cracked the dinner plate.  OK, we still have one extra.  I give it two days to live.

Another time I set my glass of ice water on the bedside table.  Instead of placing it firmly in the glass coaster, I placed it half on.  You got it.  Glass toppled over and broke.  Water ran under and into the stacks of books.  I’m not done.  In the middle of the night, I wanted a drink, so I reached over to grab the glass, it slipped out of my hand and spilled everywhere – back toward the stacks of books again.  I jumped out of bed and turned on the light and began frantically cleaning up the mess, which thrilled Brenda to no end, since she was jarred out of a sound and wonderful sleep. 

I went to the store to buy more glasses (cheaper is better here).  I confessed to the clerk how quickly I go through them.  As I left, she said, “Good luck.”  I replied, “thank you.”  She smiled, “I was talking to the glasses.”

The last time our grandchildren were here for a few days, a friend came over and observed the energy levels of the beautiful ones.  “Do you have to put things up to keep your grandchildren from breaking them,” she asked?

“No,” my wife answered.  “I put them up to keep them safe from Bob.”  I didn’t find that amusing.

There is an up side.  One friend has given us glasses for Christmas for the past few years.  She said, “Bob, keep it up.  I’ve got your presents ordered for the next two Christmases.”

(Let me hear your stories.)

Date of Blog Story: 
June 18, 2008

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