“People say I’m the life of the party because I tell a joke or two.”
The Tracks of My Tears – Smokey Robinson & The Miracles
Welcome to Drivel Over Coffee. A blog that focuses on nothing really. Induced caffeine coma of French Roast coffee and quite possibly a chocolate chip cookie. All the while my brain reverberates with the best music in the world – The ‘60’s. People say I’m the life of the party because I tell a joke or two.
Overheard on a United Airlines flight, “United Airlines is pleased to announce that we have some of the best flight attendants in the industry. Unfortunately, none of them are on this flight.” My question to those flying in these days of passenger unrest with the airlines. Do you ever wake up, kiss the person sleeping beside you, and feel glad that you are alive? I just did and apparently will not be allowed on this airline again…
Spud, The Redneck
I was sitting at our table in Jimmy’s the other day with the Old Farts Coffee Klatch, Spud was even there. I didn’t know it before but he is from North Carolina originally. I had wondered because of a slight speech accent. He shared a letter that his mom had sent him years ago when he was in the Marines. I thought I would share it with all of you also. It speaks to the essence of Spud.
Dearest Redneck Son,
I’m writing this slow because I know you can’t read fast. We don’t live where we did when you left home. Your Dad read in the newspaper that most accidents happen within 20 miles of your home, so we moved. I won’t be able to send you the address because the last North Carolina family that lived here took the house numbers when they moved so they wouldn’t have to change their address.
This place is really nice. It even has a washing machine. I’m not sure it works so well, though. Last week, I put a load of clothes in and pulled the chain. We haven’t seen them since. The weather isn’t bad here. It only rained twice last week: the first time for three days and the second time for four days. About that coat you wanted me to send, your Uncle Billy Bob said it would be too heavy to send in the mail with the buttons on, so we cut them off and put them in the pockets. Bubba locked his keys in the car yesterday. We were really worried because it took him two hours to get me an your father out.
Your sister had a baby this morning, but I haven’t found out what it is yet so I don’t know if you are an aunt or uncle. Uncle Bobby Ray was down in the “holler” with the “boys” and fell into a whiskey vat last week. Some men tried to pull him out, but he fought them off and drowned. We had him cremated. He burned for three days.
Three of your friends went off a bridge in a pickup truck. Butch was driving. He rolled down the window and swam to safety. Your other two friend were in the back. They drowned because they couldn’t get the tailgate down. I told their Mama’s that the truck would be the death of them if they didn’t fix that darn tailgate. Sure enough. There isn’t much more news at this time. Nothing much out of the normal has happened.
That was a nice letter about Spud and his family. On my way to Wal-Mart I was still thinking of Spuds letter. I went to get my dog some food. So here I am at the check-out, buying a large bag of Purina for my dog. While standing in line, to check out, a woman behind me asked if I had a dog… Duh! I was feeling a bit crabby so on impulse I told her, “No, I’m starting ‘The Purina Diet’ again… although I probably shouldn’t, because I ended up in the hospital last time. but I did lose 50 pounds before I awakened in an intensive care unit with tubes coming out of most of my most of my orifices and IV’s in both arms.” Her eyes about bugged out of her head.
I went on and on with the bogus diet story and she was totally believing it. I told her… “it’s an easy, inexpensive diet and the way it works is to load your pocket or purse with Purina nuggets and simply eat one or two every time you feel hungry. The package said the food is nutritionally complete, so I was going to try it again.” Although I might be laughing loud and hearty, deep inside I’m blue. So take a good look at my face you’ll see my smile looks out of place.
I have to mention here that practically everyone in the line was by now totally enthralled with my story, particularly a tall guy standing behind her. Horrified, she asked if something in the dog food had poisoned me and was that why I ended up in the hospital. I said, “Oh no, I was just sitting in the street, licking my butt, when a car hit me.” I thought the tall guy was going to have to be carried out the door. So how are your days going?
Had coffee with Charles, not his real name. He wondered if I had heard about Mildred. “No”, I replied. Mildred is the church gossip and self-appointed monitor of the church’s morals. She keeps sticking her nose into other people’s business. Several members of the church did not approve of her extra-curricular activities, but feared her enough to maintain their silence. Mildred made a mistake, however, when she accused Frank, a new member, of being an alcoholic. She saw his old pickup parked in front of the town’s only bar one afternoon. She emphatically told Frank (in the presence of several others) that everyone seeing it there “WOULD KNOW WHAT HE WAS DOING!”
Frank, is a man of few words, stared at her for a moment, turned and walked away. He didn’t explain, defend, or deny. He said nothing. I thought that really took a lot of intestinal fortitude to keep quiet. Later that evening, however, Frank quietly parked his pickup in front of Mildred’s house…. Walked home… and left it there all night. (You gotta love Frank!)
…. Well my friends, another spell-binding issue of the Drivel is put to bed. If you look closer, it’s easy to trace the tracks of my tears. “If I can make at least one-person smile, laugh till they leak, or maybe spit out a drink, then my day was not wasted. Until we meet again -TA!”
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