Quote O’ The Day

Wisdom doesn’t automatically come with old age. Nothing does – except wrinkles. It’s true, some wines improve with age. But only if the grapes were good in the first place.
— Abigail Van Buren (1918 – ), 1978

In the news

–==++ TopFive’s News Headlines ++==–

Alaska Blaze Levels Dozens of Igloos

Rectal-Launch Fireworks Victim: Common Sense Ruled Out as Cause
of Death

Suicide Bomber Foiled by Prozac

Economy: Spike in Camping Gear Sales Linked to Warm Weather,
Mortgage Rates

Clown Sues Barnum & Bailey After Being Replaced by Pieborg 3000

U.S. Fund Manager Trades According to National Teenage
Pregnancy Rates Because Hey That’s About the Only Damn
Thing Nobody’s Tried Yet

Credits: Jerry L. Embry (1,5), Brad Osberg (2,4,6), Bill Muse (3)

Send submissions to headlines@topfive.com

The Jungle Out The Window

Crappy night. Sissy kept waking me up, needing to go out. I may know why, now.

We were eating breakfast and Bob looked out the big window. He said, “Whoa, is that a possum?”

Possum

Yes, it was.

Its fur was messy and slobbered on, almost as if it had been carried around in somebody’s big mouth. It had one bloody spot on its hindquarters. Animal control wasn’t in (hardly surprising here in this godforsaken place). I needed the little beast to go away so the dogs could go back out. This was a work day and time was getting short.

I wanted to chase it out of the yard but got a first hand demonstration of what “playing possum” really was. The little bugger wouldn’t be chased. Every time I got near, it would fall over and give me a rictus grin, stiff as a board. I came out of the house and advanced on it a couple of times, it would fall down, I’d go back in, then it would get up and move away from my last position. I was herding it to the fence. It could walk, didn’t seem too badly off, but … it was morning and these are nocturnal creatures. It finally got to the corner of the fence under the trees and dug in. Not a good place to sleep with a pit cross and a german shepherd on patrol.

I got a big leaf rake and rolled it, stiff as a board, onto the rake, maneuvering it with a little stake that was nearby. I lifted it up on the wide rake and over the 4 foot fence to the side yard and put it down (gently) amongst the debris over there. I came back a while later and it was still in the same lumped up position it had been when I dropped it, but it was breathing rhythmically. I believe it had fallen asleep where it lay while it was playing possum. Being possum. Something. The dogs ignored it even though they were very close.

At any rate, it was gone when we got home tonight. I hope it doesn’t venture into the yard again when the dogs are out.

Word O’ the Day

Trepanation (n.) Removal of a circular piece of bone, especially of the skull

Trepanation has been carried out for both medical and mystical reasons for a long time: Evidence of it has been found in prehistoric human remains and cave paintings from at least 7,000 years ago and suggests that people believed it would cure epileptic seizures and mental disorders. Hippocrates also gave specific directions for the procedure. Stay tuned.

Headlines

🙂

-==++ TopFive’s News Headlines ++==–

Alec Baldwin Still Waiting for Father’s Day Call

Global Warming Fears Ease as Penguins Return to Capistrano

Juneteenth Celebrations: A Nation Says “What?”

Political Bloggers’ Success Still Not Getting Them Laid

Libby Busy Converting Stock Portfolio into Cigarettes

New Dad Faces First “Whoa, Nellie!” Diaper Change

Credits: David Kass (1,5), Jerry L. Embry (2), Bill Muse (3),
Joseph Moore (4,6)

Send submissions to headlines@topfive.com

Out Of Office Reply

I will be out of the office until June 19. If you need help with something web related, please call my assistant at extension 209.

Thanks.

————

As it happens, I’ll be making my way to Long Beach, California, this afternoon, set for an early evening arrival on Jet Blue (where you can watch TV! Wowie Zowie! TV!! yawn). I will spend a few days visiting my mom, her sick boss/lover/friend and my little sister [I say little, but that’s sort of meaningless when said sister is 45, yes? The old bat will be reading this]. I’m looking forward to it, even though parts of it will be weird. I’m going to make a concerted effort not to check my work email. I’ve got an autoresponder on it, and my phone has the V message. Cross your fingers.

But, just for the record, stuff always breaks and the shit hits the fan when I’m gone. It never fails. So I go off, with my promise not to check work email, with a queasy stomach if I think about it.

Feh.

When the party’s over

… from the AARP magazine.  It’s nice.

How to Grieve

“After the first death, there is no other,” wrote Dylan Thomas. That doesn’t mean the ones that come after won’t break your heart, but it’s the first that punches your soul’s passport. Welcome, fellow human, to a different country than the one you woke up to this morning. The air’s different here; so is the scenery. Your knees don’t work so well; in fact, you may want to fall to them.

For a precious little while, you are allowed to be stunned into silence, or to shriek, or to talk—recounting stories of who he was, what she meant to you, and how it all came to an end. Tell those stories. Some people may try to enforce “The Rules,” to wit: Enough of This Drama Is Enough. Ignore them. Besides, if you treat yourself gently and take the time you need, someday soon you’ll hear the faint but steady voice of your own good sense. Play music you love, sit in the sunshine if you can find some, and if anyone offers you a hand, hold it. Let them feed the cat, too, because they want to be useful. If your good sense does not kick in on its own, help it along: scramble some eggs. It will feel strange at first. But if you pretend that scrambling eggs is normal, eventually it will become normal. Soon you can squeeze some orange juice, too.

For some of us the stay in this new country seems endless. But time passes, seasons change, and, truly, would those we grieve for want us to mope? Come with me, back into the world. We’ll return to this land someday, all too soon, but in the meantime the garden needs weeding, the bills need paying. Your other loved ones need you. And you, my sweet friend, you could use a shampoo. —Larkin Warren