Saturday 31 May 2014

A Stain Free Life

I have a confession to make.

I am not my mother!

Mom was a wonderful woman who had many talents. She was a good cook, great baker, she could sew and knit, was a very good golfer, liked by most people, could sketch, do many artistic things and she was one of those women that kept a clean house. Of course she had her faults, but she is gone now and so are the memories of those negative things we all carry around with us.

I suppose that she wasn’t always like that, she would have to learn how to do most of those things, but I suspect that she was the kind of person that found learning what she enjoyed a pleasure. Well, we are all like that aren’t we? A lot of those activities would have been learned over time and for a good part of that learning I was more concerned with growing up and what was for dinner than what my mom was doing. Maybe she learned those things once I left home and she had some free time when she didn’t have to scrub grass stains out of the knees of two boy’s pants.

Most of the clear memories I have are when I was an adult with kids of my own, and those were infrequent since we lived the better part of a country away from each other. I remember her fussing over the kids and making sure they had enough to drink and plenty of pastry to eat. The thing that I have been thinking of today is that she would do the dishes almost before they got dirty. I’d put a cup or a plate down and the next thing I know, she would have scooped it up and was washing and rinsing it in the sink. How do you get like that?

I’ve been known to leave plates, bowls and glasses in the sink for days. Those are the ones that I could have put in the dishwasher and was too lazy to do even that. There are things that I have to wash by hand and unless I need them they could sit for weeks, well, not weeks, but a very long time. It takes almost no time to do a quick wash and rinse, but for some reason I must think I am too busy to clean them right away.

Today I had to clean a muffin tin that had been “soaking” for a couple of days, you know to soften the odd bit of muffin that baked onto the pan. It had soaked enough after the first ten minutes, but I guess I just wanted to be sure it would be an easy clean. Well, that and I am basically lazy. I moved it out of the sink and noticed that it had been in there long enough to leave a few rust stains on the bottom of the sink. How long had that been there? Certainly long enough to form rust and long enough to stain a stainless steel sink.

How is that possible? By the very name, a stainless steel sink is stainless. I even watched a TV show once that predicted what would happen to the world if people just disappeared and one of the things that would still be around after 1000 years were the stainless steel sinks. Not if they had a muffin tin soaking in them when we left I suppose. To be truthful, I am constantly cleaning different stains out of the stainless steel sink and it is starting to piss me off.

I wonder if there is an 800 number I could call to complain. What would I say? “That fucking sink you sold me gets stained all of the time!”

“That’s not possible sir, unless you are stupid enough to leave dishes or (God forbid) a muffin tin soaking for several days, and who in their right mind would do that?”

It kind of takes the anger out of you when it’s pointed out that everything is your fault. Well, I guess I should start to be more Mom-like and do the dishes when and before they get dirty. Mind you, there is that dishwasher that will store a whole lot of dishes and as long as I don’t buy one of the stainless steel varieties and stop making muffins, I should be able to live a stain free life.

Friday 30 May 2014

Learning a New Skill

When I was a little guy, the kids my age all rode tricycles. We rode trikes from very early on until we were five or six. Then we would graduate to a two wheeled bike that had training wheels. As we developed confidence and balance, our parents would remove first one of the training wheels and then the other.
Part of the reason we would ride the tricycles for so long is that the manufacturers either couldn’t or wouldn’t make tiny bikes to fit the very little legs. There were several sizes of tricycles and as you got older and bigger you would get a bigger trike. There was no stigma attached t a trike, riding one was a part of growing up and you could ride very fast. Well, as fast as was safe. Tricycles were nice because you couldn’t fall off of one. Well, I guess you could but it is something that you really had to work on.

The key to bicycle riding is balance. I suppose it is actually being in a constant state of unbalance and mastering the art of staying somewhere in between falling and remaining vertical. We have all experienced having a parent running behind us and holding on while we ride down the road. The parent eventually lets go and we will either fall down or just keep riding. If you are lucky, you will fall down on grass, and if you are unlucky, you will fall on pavement. Grass is more or less soft and the worst that can happen in a grass stain on your ass or knees. The pavement will give you areas of your body that have been scraped clear of skin and will have ground bits of gravel and dirt into the wound.
You get older and riding a bike becomes second nature. We would ride all day long in the summer and if you asked us we would have told you that we rode hundreds of miles every day. We would ride to our friends, to the store, to a nearby forest or empty lot where we could jump and chase each other. The odd time we would fall, but that was generally because we were doing something stupid and or dangerous. We rode our bikes until we exchanged them for cars.

One of the cardinal rules of bike riding is to look where you want to go, not where you don’t want to go. This has been scraped into my skin time and time again. It has caused flat tires, dented rims, gravel slides and the odd time doing a header over the handle bars. I remember more than once riding over a sewer grate and having my wheels slip into the opening causing me to either do a flip or making me leap from the bike.

My buddy forgot this rule the other day and ended up on his ass in the middle of an intersection. Lucky for him he suffered a little damage in his hip, but will be fine in a week or so. When a sixty something kid falls off of his bike, it can have worse consequences than when a six year old fall off his bike. The six year old doesn’t fall as far and his bones are still soft. The sixty year old has brittle bones and doesn’t heal nearly as quickly.

My friend will be fine and is learning a new skill…how to walk with crutches.

Thursday 29 May 2014

Eleven O’clock News

I was wondering today what it is that a coach does. I’m talking about coaches of professional teams, not kid’s teams. I have been a coach on a kid’s team and really all I needed to know was just a little bit more than the kids did. When you are coaching kids, they need to learn techniques and skills which are relatively easy to teach. I say relatively, because unless the kid wants to learn, there is really nothing that you can do.

I was talking to a U-10 soccer coach once and he told me that at the beginning of every practice he would put a target on the wall and if anyone could hit the target from thirty feet he would give them a soccer pin. Throughout the season, he shortened the distance to 25, then 20 and finally 15 feet. By the end of the season he hadn’t given one pin away and about half way through the season the girls stopped even trying. The girls weren’t interested in practice; they just wanted to play games. They didn’t understand that you don’t learn anything during a game; it is the practices where you learn to play the game better.

I gave up coaching to others who had an interest in becoming better, the only interest I had was how I could get out of coaching. It wasn’t my best destiny.

It is someone’s best destiny however. They will have learned and progressed through the ranks over the years, just as the athletes do. Not all people can coach at a professional level, but the select few can, which brings me back to wondering what a coach does at the professional level.

The athletes have spent years learning the game they play and getting their body into as near perfect condition as a human can. They have spent most of their life, running, bouncing a ball, catching a ball, jumping, shooting, tackling, studying the game and living and breathing this game of theirs. There can’t be very much that they don’t know about the game they love. So, what does a coach do? I imagine he may have a few tricks up his sleeve, but unless he is some kind of idiot-savant, those tricks won’t be very much different than all of the other professional coach’s tricks.

I have never been on a team nor have I ever been very interested in watching team sports on television so I have to assume the coach brings some kind of Jedi mind tricks to teach the players. He must be able to somehow get the players to forget they are down fifty-three points and play like this game is the most important thing in the history of the world. The coach will have to make the players forget the fight they had with their wife this morning and that their baby was puking all night long. He has to convince the players that they must play their very best even though the owners are out to screw them when contract time comes around.

The coach must somehow convince the player that this game actually means something. Sometimes the coach convinces the athlete that he should take drugs that will enhance his performance and play down the fact that his testicles are shrinking at an alarming rate. I don’t really know what a good coach does, I guess. Maybe there are plays and techniques the player still doesn’t know, I doubt it, but maybe. Maybe it is just to be a whipping boy, someone to blame at the end of the season.

Maybe it is just sounding good on the eleven o’clock news.

Wednesday 28 May 2014

An Excellent God

The other day I learned that a friend of mine is terminally ill with cancer. That is never a nice thing to hear about someone. I imagine it is even less pleasant to hear about yourself.

Whenever I hear this kind of news, my initial reaction is disbelief, followed by sadness, then I hope that it is either a misdiagnosis or that the end comes quickly and painlessly. Once I have run through the myriad feelings that I have for my friend and gone over all of the fun memories of him/her, I begin to think of myself.

What effect will this passing have on me?

Sure, I will have lost a friend, but every action has an impact on the world around it, and death is another of those things impacting us. I would like to think that I will reflect on my life and attempt to live every day as if it is a precious gift from heaven. I might, for a couple of weeks and then it will be back to my old ways of pissing my time away sleeping or watching TV.

Every now and then I wonder just what happens to the person once he or she passes on. I don’t believe in a heaven or hell, I can almost believe there is a great reward at the end of a successful life, but I don’t believe in eternal damnation for mistakes that I made in moments of weakness. There just doesn’t seem to be a point to life if that is all there is, and I’d like to think that even if I haven’t made a great success of this life, at least it has some meaning. It is nice to think that there will be a bright light at the end, and all of your loved ones will be there to greet you. I am quite fond of myself, but surely all of those loved ones must have something better to do than hang around waiting for me to pass on. If they aren’t busy, then what do they do all day? Play the harp? Some of them were hesitant about spending time with me when we were both alive, I can’t see them happy about meeting me in the afterlife.

I tend to lean towards the far eastern beliefs that view this life as a learning experience and we keep coming back in subsequent lives until we manage to get things right. There is a problem with that of course is who decides when you have finally gotten things right. What is right? If you do get it right, then what comes next? If there is a next, then what happens after you get the next right? Or the next after that? When does it end? What happens when it ends, or does it ever end? I hope that it isn’t an eternity of learning, because I spent some time in school and although I enjoyed the time I spent, I was happy to move on to a more productive application of what I had learned.

My personal thought is that once we have gone through all of these many lifetimes and yet more lifetimes in other dimensions, we become God. We don’t reunite with God, we become God. We have learned all that there is to know and since the universe is without end, there is room for everyone to set out their God shingle and run things. I imagine that there are good Gods and less good Gods, I would like to think that I will be one of the good ones and there will be a minimum of “smiting” and I would like to keep a little higher profile than the God we have on Earth. Every now and then I will appear to stop a war, feed the hungry and heal the sick. You just never know.

I hope my friend has a good passing and since he has been a good human, I would imagine he will be an excellent God eventually.

Tuesday 27 May 2014

A Reservation For Two

The other day I overheard some people talking about how recent immigrants are trying to take over the government by strategic voting. I thought that all voting was strategic in the sense that you vote for the people that you think will best serve your needs and desires.

This got me to thinking about how immigrants have been treated whenever they come to a new land. The first ones that I was aware of were the Italian immigrants when I was growing up in Toronto. I can remember people talking about how they live like animals with five families living in the same house, how the whole neighbourhood stinks when they are cooking their food. Five years later, when all five families owned their own homes (outright) and had started businesses which employed many others you didn’t hear as much complaining.

I worked a summer job at a door manufacturing plant and the bulk of the workforce there were Italian. They were incredibly hard workers and other than the fact that I couldn’t figure out how they could speak to each other and not use English, they were pretty cool people. It was there that I learned to swear in another language. There was a second generation Italian kid about my age working there and we naturally got together on breaks and lunchtime. We talked about many things and he told me that all but $5 of his pay went to the family bank account. I told him that was bullshit and he had the right to keep his pay for himself. He understood where I was coming from, but pointed out that when he gets married, his parents will buy them a house and her parents will furnish it. Hmmmmm…

There was a time when the Irish came to North America in droves. There was difficulty getting jobs and food in Ireland and the west promised a better life. They were thought to be no good for anything but drinking and fighting, and of course the Leprechauns. Eventually, the Irish got into law enforcement (according to the TV shows) and eventually politics. More of that strategic voting I suppose. Say, wasn’t John Kennedy Irish? Today, most of the Irish people that I know are good citizens and contribute to the betterment of the country, although they still like to drink and fight. Right Linda?

Today we have a large influx of people from the Indian sub-continent that are immigrating to our country. Their food smells different and if you are to believe the gossip they are taking over the country. Maybe so, but from where I sit, all that I see are people who are hard working and wish to make a better life for themselves and their families. Don’t we all wish for that?

The people that complain about losing jobs and our values being changed are just wrong. Some things will change, but change comes no matter what, it is the nature of life. In a generation or two no one will be able to tell who was who and when they came to this country because like it or not there is a good chance that your kids or grandkids will be marrying “one of those Irish”! Or Indian, or Italian. Oh, and that stinky food that we complained about thirty years ago is the same food served at restaurants we line up at now.

I wonder if it is just a coincidence that the countries I mentioned all start with the letter “I”? If not, there is a good possibility that in the future we will be able to complain about the Icelandic, Indonesian, Iranian, Iraqi and the Israelis. Maybe we will give the Israelis a pass in lieu of the past 5000 years or so. It seems that we are being alphabetical in our mistrust of immigrants. Just a warning to all of those countries “J” through “Z”, I have my eye on you and would it be possible to put in a reservation for two, Saturday February 13th 2044 for 7:00PM?

Monday 26 May 2014


I hate the first day of gardening!

I know that there are people who spend the long, cold months looking through seed catalogues, sharpening and polishing their garden tools and visualizing the perfect placement of each and every plant. I don’t know what to say about those people, insanity comes with many different disguises.

I am a reluctant gardener and although I can take some pride in the garden when the season is over, the beginning is more of a pain than pleasure. I have to turn the soil over and break up the lumps. I understand that if I had good soil there wouldn’t be any lumps to break up. I toss in compost from one of the two compost bins I have and I think it’s good for the plants. I haven’t heard any complaints.

The worst part for me is picking what to plant. I guess I should clarify that I am talking about a vegetable garden because the flowers will look after themselves. They don’t, but whose fault is that? Anyways, I try to pick things for the garden that are edible and won’t disappoint at the end of the season. They also need to be relatively easy to look after and of course they need to be able to take a certain amount of abuse and dog urine. Carrots have never disappointed, but tomatoes and lettuce have. Tomatos either don’t ripen on the plant or there are so damned many that I can’t bear looking at a tomato until well after Christmas. Lettuce can be nice, but it is a pain to get ants and their grubby little friends off the leaves.

One year I planted beets and they did really well! I pretty much hate beets. I do like to plant peas in the hopes that the grandkids will marvel at being able to pick food right from the stalk, vine, or green growy thingy. I guess if I had a double bubble gum tree we would have much more excitement. I planted corn one year…pathetic! The sunflowers look really cool, but never seem to make it all the way to maturity before the first killing frost. That can be sometime mid-August some years.

I have had a lot of luck with rhubarb and chives over the years, and if anyone wants some year old, frozen rhubarb or a fistful of chives, just let me know. I can’t stop those fuckers from growing. This year I have planted potatoes in the hope that the saying “Out of sight, out of mind.” will work its magic for the potatoes. Water and sun, how can I go wrong? I am also trying peppers and cucumbers this year. I have grown these in years past, but I stopped for some reason. I’m sure the reason will become painfully apparent by the beginning of August.

Years ago I planted some of those decorative gourds that you see around Halloween. I find gourds endlessly fascinating in colour, shape and utter uselessness. I suppose I could make a small ladle out of them or if I was lucky maybe there would be one that looked like Elvis or Christ. That would be something! Pumpkins are cool, but they kind of take over the yard as well as the garden and no matter how cool they are, they seldom look like anyone famous.

Well, I suppose I had best get at it, disappointment doesn’t grow on trees…or does it?

Sunday 25 May 2014

Earn His Keep

Every time that I go in to make the bed, Buster comes running in and jumps up on the bed. For some reason, he thinks that my going into the bedroom is a signal for a human-dog wrestling match. I really have no idea where he gets that idea from, because I have never gone into the bedroom to fight with the dog.

If I want to fight with the dog, I will do it outside where both of us can fight as dirty as possible. He has me beat when it comes to speed, but I have opposable thumbs and a large brain which in combination lets me outsmart him nine times out of ten. Well, maybe six times out of ten or at worst, 50-50, but better than half the time I can trick him. He’s a sucker for the invisible ball toss trick and I can always get him with “WHAT’S THAT????” Sure, he can run circles around me (literally) and his patented “muddy paws” will pretty much always end the fight.

I can always win by pulling out one of his treats. He stops whatever trick he was about to pull and comes to sit quietly at my feet. I’m no different than most dog owners; I like to humiliate him by forcing him to do stupid tricks to “earn” the treat. He gets back at me by forcing me to pick up his shit at the busiest intersection in the neighbourhood, so I guess we are even. No, not nearly are we even! Private humiliation is no where near as humiliating as public humiliation. Fucking dog!

Buster is about eight years old. I say about because we got him from the Animal Shelter and they can only guesstimate his age. His mother was/is a loose bitch that dropped him and forgot about him as soon as she could. I kind of feel sorry for him, but shit happens and you have to get over it.

He has been living with us for at least six of those years and in all that time he hasn’t learned to speak English. That’s the only language we speak in the house, so he should have picked up a rudimentary understanding in all of that time. Nothin! You would think he’d have learned a kind of pigeon English, but that would have been no help because I don’t speak pigeon. Like most English speaking people, when confronted with someone that doesn’t speak my language, I repeat what I said slower and louder again and again and again, in the hopes that they will be able to dredge English out of some deep recess of their brains.

I have mentioned before that Buster contributes almost nothing to the house. Sure he is cute and cuddly, but cute and cuddly doesn’t buy kibble and treats. I have been trying to teach him how to do housework, but he doesn’t understand my desire to make the bed. He likes his blankets all bunched up and uneven and if possible, mixed up with a chew toy or two. He has yet to wipe his muddy feet even once since he moved in and I have made it abundantly clear how I feel about it. He leaves bits and pieces of hair on the furniture and floors, not to mention any clothes that happen to be dark in colour.

I have to admit that he is very good at cleaning the dishes. I just leave them on the floor and leave. By the time I get back, he has washed them in the sink, dried them and put them right back on the floor for me to put away in the cupboard. That’s why I still have hope, if I can teach him to do the dishes; I am convinced that he can learn all of the other jobs that I have for him. He might just start to earn his keep sooner than later.

Saturday 24 May 2014

An Unusually Small Penis

I am not a car guy!

I have never been a car guy, and I will never be a car guy. I don’t care if a car can go from 0 to 100 in five point three seconds. All that means to me is that I could conceivably get a ticket in less than five seconds after the light goes green. The fact that a car can do 280 KPH just seems stupid to me. To the best of my knowledge, there is no place in North America that you can drive faster than 85 KPH. What’s the point?

I can appreciate a good looking car, but my comments are more like “That reminds me of a gangster car.” or “Wouldn’t that be really hard to get in and out of?” “I like the red colour.” “I wonder how much the tires cost.” Engine performance just isn’t interesting for me. All that I need to know is will it get me to the second hand store or Tim Horton’s. The heater is important too, I do live in Canada and if this past year is any indication, we will have eight out of twelve months that the car needs heating. My buddy’s new car came with seat warmers which I don’t like because for an instant I kind of think I may have soiled myself.

New cars come with GPS systems, fantastic stereo systems, Bluetooth, onboard computers and God knows what else. I still think that power windows and doors are somewhat of an extravagance. To me, the best air conditioning is rolling down the windows, it cools you naturally and you can’t hear any passenger’s inane babbling. Other places in the country need the AC, but I live in Calgary and we only ever have a couple of weeks of hot weather. Like I say, I am not a car guy.

That’s why it is strange that I got the Jaguar Magazine in the mail today. It has 50 pages dedicated to the 2015F-TYPE Coupe. It has a 550 HP supercharged engine and goes from 0 -100 in 4.2 seconds with a top speed of 300 KPH. The joke in the magazine is that the pictures in this issue will be the only time I’d see one standing still. I guess they assume that I would know what an F-TYPE Coupe Jaguar would look like. It is available to me at my local retailer for $72,900, so I should take the plunge. The plunge into poverty I guess.

It is a nice looking car, and the magazine is glossy with lots of long shots of the Jag on mountain or seaside roads. I guess it’s going really fast, but hard to tell from a picture. The magazine also has some very odd pictures of the Shakespearian actors in the stage play “Neverland”. I can’t imagine that these people are all driving the new Jags. Maybe the producers of “Neverland” drive Jags and are footing some of the bill for this magazine. I don’t know, and I don’t really care.

I am not a car guy and I am not a Shakespeare fan either. Do you think Shakespeare would be driving an F-TYPE Jaguar if he lived in out time? Maybe he would if he had an unusually small penis.

Friday 23 May 2014


Our family is on baby watch.

Little Tsunami could arrive at any time, but I will understand if he/she/it decides that life is much better and certainly less stressful just staying put. Can’t blame Tsunami for not knowing any better, there is a whole world of knowledge out there just waiting to be learned. Someone should tell he/she/it that there isn’t a test and life isn’t pass or fail, it just is.

I never know how to react to family pregnancies. Yes, I am always excited but I have the feeling that I should keep my excitement under the surface. Truthfully, I am more excited for the new mom and dad than for baby “X”.  They are the ones that are going to have the biggest impact on their way of life. I remember my dad telling me that I shouldn’t get too excited until I actually have it in my hand. He was talking about money, but he could have meant a baby I suppose.

The idea of “spur of the moment” ceases to exist the moment that beautiful baby makes an appearance. Little things that they once took for granted will now require a little thought and preparation. It is nothing insurmountable, but babies are flexible, bounceable, cuddly and they smell good for the most part. Brendan and Tara have done all of the preparation and are as ready as new parents can be. Some of the things that they have planned will not be feasible; some things that they didn’t think of will be painfully obvious in the weeks to come. Tsunami is going to have a great mom and dad.

I am kind of hoping for a baby girl. We have two boy grandchildren and a girl would go a long way to balancing the world. Plus, in some ways girls can be cuter than little boys, but with the genetics coursing through this kid, she is bound to be something of a tomboy anyways. I told Brendan early on that I preferred a surprise and I think they feel the same way. They haven’t told us the sex of the baby, so I am assuming they just don’t know either. Whatever the sex, it will be the cutest being on the planet!

I do plan to spoil my new grandbaby and more than likely I will fill her/him with bad ideas, candy, popcorn, gum and juice. The juice is in there to convince Tara and Brendan that I can be responsible if I choose to be. I don’t, but they don’t need to know that.

We are all waiting, none more so than Tara, but Tsunami will arrive when he/she is good and ready and not a moment before. The cousins are looking forward to having a new cousin to play with. They may be a little disappointed that they will have to wait the better part of a year, but both of them will be great cousins. Aunt Maegan is just waiting for a phone call that will start a flurry of shopping for the cutest things on the planet. Maegan has a knack for getting the right gift at the right time. She will be able to spoil her new nephew/niece in July when she visits.

I can hardly wait till I can teach the baby to drive. Legal age for driving is ten…right?

Thursday 22 May 2014


I bought three tomato plants today so that I can have fresh, vine ripened tomatoes in my salad and on my sandwiches. Well, that is the dream.
Other years I have started the tomatoes from seed and looked after them for months it seemed before they were ready to plant in dirt as seedlings. Once they hit the dirt, they succumbed to some kind of vegetative state for a couple of weeks. Maybe it was a kind of tomato PTS. Whatever the reason, the tomatoes reached a pretty decent size eventually, but not one turned red or even a light pink. I brought them inside just before the first frost and over the next month or so, a few turned red, and a few stayed green and a third just started to rot. None of them tasted any better than the tomatoes I can get at the store every day throughout the year.

Next I bought seedlings and that year I had so many tomatoes that friends and relatives refused to take any more from us. I got sick of the taste of tomatoes and a goodly amount ended up in the compost bin. I don’t know what I did to make them grow, but so far I haven’t been able to duplicate that success.
This year I bought plants that are about a foot tall and one even has flowers already. With any luck, they will not suffer from the vegetable PTS disorder and will just start growing and fruiting. Ideally, I’d like to have some tomatoes in late July or early August, but I will take them whenever they choose to grow.

I bought the three plants for about $20 including taxes which is cheaper than some of the other places I looked at. Tomatoes are going for about $1.50 a pound right now and I can only assume that at the end of the season (harvest time) they really should be down to about $1.00 a pound. They should be, but the way modern economics work, when there is a glut in the market the price will rise and when a commodity is in short supply the price will rise. We just can’t win. Anyways, the way I see it, each plant needs to produce just under seven pounds of fruit. Large, juicy, red and aromatic tomatoes fit for a king.

I’m not even going to factor in the time spent watering and weeding, plucking the extra floret’s off the plants and shooing the birds away. I don’t shoo the birds away, I trust them not to eat more than their fair share. They can peck one or two tomatoes and leave me the rest. Well, unless they are all green and then they can have as many tomatoes as they want.

I’ll let the plants get used to being in the back yard tonight and sometime tomorrow I will bury them in the dirt, soak them and then leave them to do what they are supposed to do. Should be fun…

Wednesday 21 May 2014

Silence Looks Pretty Good

I can't remember just how old I was when I started to wear glasses, but I think it was around when I was 13 or so. I don't remember being self conscious, but I would have been the only 13 year old in history not to have worried about how I looked when I entered high school. I didn't have a very strong self image, so it is possible that I wouldn't have worried because I knew no one would be looking at me.
I don't even remember what led up to my needing and getting glasses. I suppose it would have had something to do with poor grades in school, the theory being that since I couldn't see what was written on the chalkboard then I wouldn't understand what was being taught. Pretty good theory, but since I did equally poorly or even worse once I got the glasses, it didn't hold much water. I suppose my discovery of the mind expanding qualities of recreational drugs didn't help the grades either.

I do remember what a world of difference there was when I first donned said glasses. Suddenly, and for no really good reason, the world which had been blurry and out of focus was now blurry and out of focus. Okay, that was the drugs, but without the effects of drugs, my world suddenly cleared up. I didn't have to sit with my nose inches from the TV, I did, but I didn't have to. I could clearly see what was written on the chalkboard, I still didn't understand any of it, but I could see it clearly. Ugly people that I only saw at a distance turned out to be beautiful and those good looking people I often saw close up were less than beautiful.
I’ve managed to make it though decades wearing glasses and although my sight has become progressively worse; my glasses have increased in strength to compensate. My eyes and the world have made peace with each other.
Now, in my sixth decade I find that the same kind of thing is happening again. I have to sit closer to the TV; I don’t understand what people are saying. My hearing seems to be going. I don’t need hearing as much as I needed to see, but I suppose that I am going to need to do something about it sooner rather than later. I can get by with the TV sound turned up, if the people I am talking to are close and even if I don’t hear everything, most of what my friends are saying isn’t worth listening to anyways. I noticed that the songs on the radio have developed different lyrics that don’t make any sense. They still rhyme, but they are even more senseless than they normally are.
I have started to walk by the Costco hearing aid section and I am looking at the price. Hearing aids are pretty pricey! There will come a time when the irritation of not hearing the world will be well worth the cost of being able to hear mechanically. Not yet, but the time is coming. I suppose I will have to get bored with silence, and after a lifetime of people talking nonsense to me, silence looks pretty good.