Friday, October 12, 2012

Who Goes There?

One day (of course at night on a Saturday) the lens fell out of my glasses.  Being blind as a bat, I held the missing lens in place the best I could with one hand and used the other to drive to the nearby Shopko.  The optical shop was closed but they don't have a wrought iron gate, so their displays were still available.  I was searching through them for one of those little tiny screwdrivers that I buy and never find again, looking a little like Sherlock Holmes working a case, when someone called out a friendly, "Hi, Kay!"  I figured if they knew my name, I should say "Hi" back and did so.  Without my glasses, I don't recognize my own face in a mirror so I pretended to be looking at the display with rapt attention, which of course I was.

When she got closer, I saw it was my good friend and neighbor, Belle.  I've known her for a quarter of a century.  She raised Kyle from when he was a baby until he was well into grade school.  She was such a good babysitter that he (and many others) would stop in and visit with her on their way home from school years after.  He still stops and gives her a hug now and then.  Anyway, I explained my dilemma and she laughingly helped me find a little screwdriver.

Friday, October 5, 2012


I've debated whether or not to come clean, but figured why not? The few Cliftonite people who read my blog probably already know about it, and surely no namesake still survives.

My dad named his cows (and their names just might have been the same as some of the women in town whose personalities and traits may have had some semblance to certain said women).  It seemed perfectly normal to me and I thought my friend's dad must have been a little strange, as their cows were all named "Cow". I questioned almost nothing my dad ever did or said...other than that one time when I learned my lesson.

There was one cow that was a bit high strung. I'm sure she far surpassed her namesake, especially as time went on.  She always made me very nervous, staring me down on a regular basis.  Dad knew about this and told me to stay away from her the best I could, advice I took quite seriously.  One day, however, I was stuck in the middle of the corral, boots on, mucking in the manure, when I found myself unavoidably in the same general area as this bovine. I was trying to hurry as fast as bow-leggedly possible when she gave me a look that made the hair on the back of my neck stand up.  All I seemed to lack at the moment was a red cape.

Pure adrenaline shot through my entire body.  In one second, I learned cow language and the words she screamed were: "I hate you and I am going to kill you...right now!"  I was a good ten paces from the fence but covered them all in about five seconds flat, even leaving one of my boots right where it got stuck, finishing in stockinged foot.  (At times like these, you don't care about such details.)  I hit that fence at full speed, second rung from the top.  If I had had five more seconds to build up speed, I could have cleared the thing like an Olympic high jumper.  At almost exactly the same moment my foot hit that rung, she smashed into the fence right below me, THUD!

I don't remember going back for the boot, but my dad took her to the auction the very next day.