Sunday, March 27, 2005

Monday Madness - Post-Easter Edition

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One of my most enduring memories of Easter comes from my incarceration at Saint Paul's School in Garden City, New York (Class of '68). They always did a nice baked ham dinner for those of us who lived so far away that it wasn't feasible for us to go home for the holiday. Naturally, there was left over ham. The cook was a fine fellow, learned his trade in the Army and plied it for twenty years there, followed by thirty years on the dining car of the train that ran between New York City, Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington, D.C. Which is neither here, nor there, except I was reminded of his penchant for using the left over ham in the beans he made for Monday dinner. Which the following story stirred memories of how it sounded in chapel on Tuesday morning ...

Once upon a time there lived a man who had a terrible passion for baked beans. He loved them, he adored them, he yearned for them. But they always caused him a great deal of embarrassment shortly after eating them. The reaction of his body to the beans was swift and terrible to behold.

One day he met a girl and fell in love. When it became apparent that they would marry, he realized she might be even more embarrassed and humiliated by his addiction to baked beans. He decided to make the supreme sacrifice and give up his beloved baked beans. A short time later they were married.

Some months later, on his way home from work, his car broke down. He was not too far from home so he decided to leave the car and walk the rest of the way. He passed a small roadside cafe and decided to call his wife and tell her that he would be late for supper. As he entered the cafe, the smell of baked beans overwhelmed him. He still had several miles to go, and decided that he could walk off any after-effects before reaching home. Before he knew it, he had eaten three large plates of baked beans. Even as he left the cafe, the effects began to be felt. He pooted up a hill, and poot-pooted down the other side. As he grew closer to home, the frequency and forcefulness diminished greatly, and he felt reasonably safe.

Just as he reached his home, however, he felt a great rumbling inside and was seized with a terrible urgency. As he waited just outside his front door to release one last effort, his wife threw open the door. She excitedly exclaimed, "Darling, I have made the most wonderful surprise dinner for you." She blindfolded him and led him to his chair at the head of the table. Just as she was ready to remove the blindfold, the phone rang. She made him promise not to peek until she returned and went to answer the phone.

When she had gone, he seized the opportunity, shifted his weight to one leg and loudly broke wind. It was not only loud, but as ripe as a rotten egg. He had a hard time breathing, so he took his napkin and began to fan the air about him. He just started feeling better when he felt another urge. He again raised one leg and let her rip. It sounded like a tuba and smelled so bad that he started gagging. He fanned until his arms ached. Things had just about returned to normal when he felt another powerful urge. He shifted his weight to the other leg and let go. This was the prize-winner. The windows rattled, the dishes on the table shook and a minute later the flowers on the table were dead.

While keeping one ear on the conversation in the hallway, he continued like this for the next 15 or 20 minutes, fanning away each time with his napkin. When the sounds of farewells indicated the end of the telephone conversation, he neatly laid his napkin in his lap and folded his hands on top of it. Smiling contentedly, he was the picture of innocence when his wife returned to the room.

Apologizing for talking so long, she asked if he had peeked. After assuring her that he had not, she removed the blindfold, revealing the dinner guests seated around the table for his surprise birthday party.

While I am pretty sure it isn't the original source, I found this version of the story recounted in an email dated Friday, June 11, 1993 from Jill Harlow J_HARLOW at OJC.COLORADO.EDU. In case she is the original author, all rights to it are hers. I'm only to blame for exposing you to it, gentle reader.

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1. Independence Day is more fun to celebrate than any other holiday.
2. The last vacation I took was to I can't remember.
3. The next vacation I plan to take will be to Hamilton, Ontario and Niagara Falls.
4. I'd really like to be more forgiving of stupid driver tricks.
5. I can't remember the last time I had eight hours of uninterrupted sleep.
6. The book I last read (or am currently reading) is Laurell K Hamilton's "Cerulean Dreams".
7. The last program I installed on my computer was Windows XP Service Pack 2.
8. When it comes to food, my weakness is protein -- steaks, roasts fillets and filets, fish, fowl, beasties, too -- I love 'em all.
9. I really look forward to spending time in my kayak.

Blog Pimping: Also, take a look at Gail Martin's "Life in The 'Burg - A Fictional Place to Lose Yourself" Gail (a nom de plume) is a frustrated writer/mother/housewife who let's it all hang out on her blog, every now and then. Like the rest of us, the mysteries of teens, gasoline prices, high prices and midlife enui are the grist for her mill. Give this Pennsylvanian Prose broker a chance -- she'll grow on you.

It's been raining most of the day and now they are forecasting another inch overnight. The beginning of flood season is upon us. With upwards of two to three feet of snow in the woods still, the runoff will be amazing and catastrophic. Seems like we did this in early April, 1987. Deja vu all over again, Yogi.

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