FLIGHT RISK

Who knew that this innocent-looking kitty cat would become such a flight risk? Flyboy, what don’t you understand about STAY THE F HOME?

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LEFTOVER

When I tilled our garden box yesterday, I found this leftover from last year’s potato crop. ’tis a good omen, I thought. We’ll plant more soon and pray for an abundant 2020 crop.

Now, what to do with the leftover potato?

Why, roast it and have it for lunch, of course.

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STF@HOME

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MORBID REFLECTIONS

The times they are a changin’.

WAITING TO DIE
A Boomer’s thoughts on death
by Charles McKelvy
We’re all waiting to die, regardless of exposure to the novel coronavirus infecting the planet.
Yes, it is tempting to sit smugly in one’s wiped-down domicile and watch others die on the telly, or to simply remove one’s self from the cold calculus of death.
I’ll survive.
I won’t die.
I’m immune.
I can party with the elite in Westport, Connecticut or play on the beaches of Florida.
Come on, the Idiot in Chief says this whole thing is overblown and that we should get back to normal just as soon as possible so he and his rich pals can continue to suck every last dollar out of us.
But whether we survive this pandemic or the next one or the one after that, or the next killer tornado or hurricane, we are all going to see Doctor Death.
And we’ve all been waiting to see Doc D from the moment when daddy’s sperm met mommy’s ovum.
We are born to die, and, of course, we can be ripped from the warm, dark comfort of the womb as a “choice” against an unplanned pregnancy, and/or die in delivery as I almost did when my alert obstetrician untangled the umbilical cord from around my neck on the afternoon of May 7, 1950. I suppose I will always bear that psychic scar in my subconscious, and I know my late mother often reminded me of my harrowing brush with death at birth.
I nearly died a few years later from scarlet fever, and when I was about to be put under to have my tonsils removed at the tender age of four, I fought like a berserker, because I was sure they were trying to kill me. I was too young to die, or so I thought. And I can still see that sinister black, rubber mask descending upon my face.
So I have had a morbid fascination with the Big D from early on. I spent most of the Cold War searching for the nearest fallout shelter in the event of an all-out, nuclear conflagration with the Rooskies. I took Nikita Khrushchev at his word when he thundered that he would bury us. I asked friends how long I could breathe underground, and they said: “Not long.”
And: “Holding your breath is just gonna make it worse.”
We Cold War kids also worried about the Red Chinese creating a human bridge across the Pacific and running us through with bamboo stakes in a human wave attack. We had studied the habits of red ants: we knew the legions of Red Chinese were just as bad, only bigger.
But my biggest worry about imminent demise came at the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, when I asked my Uncle Jack if I should worry.
He took a long pull off his cancer stick, exhaled, and said: “Kid, those Russian missiles will be here in less than 20 minutes.”
“So what should I do?” I asked.
“Kid,” he said, taking another drag of hot tar, “what you wanna do are two things: one, bend over as far as you can. Two, kiss your ass goodbye.”
Gulp!
Suddenly, it was obvious that my wait to die wouldn’t be so long after all. I would be a burn mark on the sidewalk at the tender age of 12.
Thankfully, cooler heads prevailed that fall; the crisis passed, but not my fear of imminent death. I realized at that formative age that every passing second brought me closer to the inevitable. I was on a moving conveyor-belt that was rolling me ever closer to the inky crevasse.
Yikes!
What was this Boy Scout to do?
Why, Be Prepared, of course. That’s the Scout motto, right?
So, I prepared by turning to the Big-Big Book. Specifically to John 14 where Jesus is giving his farewell speech at his final meal before his trial, torture, and gruesome execution the following day. Faced with his own torture and death, he nonetheless manages to mouth these cheery thoughts: “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You have faith in God; have faith also in me. In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places. If there were not, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you?”
Of course not.
A friend recently reminded me that that was the one and only verse one needed to take away from the Bible: “Do not let your hearts be troubled.”
I repeat: “Do not let your hearts be troubled.”
So, I won’t.
Let my heart be troubled in these troubling times.
I have my After Life Insurance; I am up to date on the premiums. That doesn’t mean that I’m not going to stay the f#*&k home.
I will do just as my dear wife Natalie, and our dear friend Dixie and our good governor, Gretchen Whitmer, strongly advise: stay home. Avoid contact. Meet with friends on the phone. Wash my hands and stay off planes, trains, and ships.
All that and more, because I don’t want to die. I would like to continue living as long as possible.
But, should my ticket get suddenly punched, then I know that a place has been prepared for me in a place that makes the land of milk and honey look like a parking lot outside a slaughter house.
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GHOULIES AND GHOSTIES

Ancient Scottish Prayer:

From Ghoulies and Ghosties

and long-legged Beasties

and Things that go Bump in the Night,

Good Lord, deliver us.

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UPON REFLECTION

As I write this, I am listening to Mass at Saint Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City. Lord hear our prayers for those on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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WE ARE NOT ALONE

As we say around the tables: WE ARE NOT ALONE. Bill W. taught us in 1935 to use available technology to carry the message, and we are, one virtual meeting at a time.

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