Tag Archives: old age

You Can Take Your Bucket List And Shove It

thHR79VYH6There they were, like clock work, 8:00 AM, the same booth at McDonald’s; Elmer and Waldo slurping senior coffees.

“What’s on your bucket list?” Waldo said.

“Bucket list!” Elmer said. “What the heck is that?”

“You know, just a list of things you want to do before kick the bucket,” Waldo said. “They made a movie about it. Two old guys doing what they always dreamed of doing before they die.”

“They make a stupid movie and everybody has to run out and do stupid things and act like there‘s something wrong with you if you don‘t comply and do what Hollywood says is normal,” Elmer said. “It’s not normal. People’ve been croaking without bucket lists for millenniums. I suppose you‘re going to tell me next Lincoln wanted to go to the Ford Theater before he died.”

“There’s got to be some things you want to do before you kick the bucket,” Waldo said.

“It all sounds to me like its hastening death,” Elmer said. “You don’t make a grocery list until you’re about ready to go shopping. I’ve put off going to the grocery for at least a week because I didn’t have a grocery list.”

“What are you talking about?” Waldo said.

“I’ll be sitting at home and all the sudden I want cookies and there aren’t any in the house. I could go the grocery right away and get some, but instead I say, ‘Wait till you have a list.’ It may be a week before I get cookies. Who knows, if I stay away from making a bucket list I can put death off for a couple of years. I ain‘t ready to die and I‘m not gonna give the appearance I‘m ready to die by doing something like climbing Mount Kilimanjaro or entering the running of the bulls in Pamplona.”

“But nobody knows when they’re going to die,” Elmer said. “It could be tomorrow. You got to start a bucket list.”

“Let’s say I start one today,” Elmer said. “And I’m laying on my death bead tomorrow. That’s a very unpleasant death.”

“What do you mean?” Waldo said.

“Because first on my list is a beautiful woman waiting for me at the corner bar and I’m stuck on life support,” Elmer said. “Who wants that?”

“Don’t you get it,” Waldo said. “That’s what keeps you alive; planning and doing.”

“It’s a gimmick, Waldo,” Elmer said. “It’s just another way they get us old guys to spend our money and die before our time dangling at the end of a bungee cord. Let‘s just close the subject, I don‘t want to talk about it anymore.”

Waldo waited for a moment. “Elmer, there’s one more thing about the bucket list.”

“Sure,” Waldo said. “What is it?”

“Whose the woman you got in mind?” Elmer said. “If you ain’t gonna put her on your list it would be a shame not to have her on somebody’s.”

“Elmer,” Waldo said. “There’s something you must want to see or do before you kick the bucket.”

“There is something,” Elmer said.

“What is it?” Waldo said.

“I’d like to see Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson appear on screen together,” Elmer said.

(This is 365 day prompt.)

(This is also a Daily Prompt)

Other Bloggers Seeking Truth

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Filed under Daily Prompt, Short Stories

My Mom Is 99; Top That!

Mom when she was a teenager. We might call this a glamor shot today. Mom wanted to be an actress.

Mom when she was a teenager. We might call this a glamor shot today. Mom wanted to be an actress.

Daily Prompt: Hi, Mom!

Today is Mother’s Day in the United States. Wherever in the world you are, write your mother a letter.

I’m not an observer or celebrator of Mother’s Day. Let’s be blunt; if one needs a reminder from a TV commercial, a greetings card company, florists, or The Country Buffet maybe things ain’t so good between you and Mom.

If I did something special for her on that day she would call me out on it. “Why can’t you be this nice to me all the time?”

I call her once a week. Sometimes she gets lost in her memories. She will confuse me with her brother who died over twenty years ago. We have the same first name.

I think a lot about Mom these days. She’s ninety-nine. Imagine that! She has outlived her husband, boyfriend, brothers, sister, all her cousins, friends, and two daughters. She’s buried I don’t know how many doctors that has told her to keep her cholesterol down and  lose some weight.

She lived in a time before radio, TV, or any sort of communication as we know it today. Automobiles were rare. An airplane ride was a novelty. She was in high school when the Great Depression started. She was a part of that “greatest generation” where all work was honorable and to be on welfare or the public dole was a dishonor. If you didn’t have a job you looked until you found a job, any job.

That's Mom holding me up. Taken in 1947 at 124 1/2 East Euclid Street, Lima, Ohio.

That’s Mom holding me up. Taken in 1947 at 124 1/2 East Euclid Street, Lima, Ohio.

Mom was a retail clerk, had a laundry route, managed retail stores, worked in factories, cleaned homes, washed dishes, tended bars, and waited tables.

She still lives on her own. She works crossword puzzles every day and still watches soap operas.

Nearly two years ago I posted stories about her for an entire year. They are under the “Mom” category of the right sidebar.

Mother of all bloggers:

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Ilya Fostiy. A Toy | Bright Moments Catcher
  2. Ilya Fostiy. Amnesia | Bright Moments Catcher
  3. Ilya Fostiy. Remark | Bright Moments Catcher
  4. Daily Post: Hi, Mom! | Charles Ray’s Ramblings
  5. What Is It About Mothers? | Katherine’s Daughter
  6. Sun kissed, Life bound. | caffeinated sonnets
  7. May 12 Daily Prompt: Hi, Mom! | Nadeen’s Reading Corner
  8. Happy Mother’s Day: A Son’s Appreciation For Mom | Creative Mysteries
  9. DP – Hi, Mom! | Life With Pink Princesses
  10. Salamat Ma | Daily Prompt: Hi, Mom! | likereadingontrains
  11. Everyday Adventures | Daily Prompt: Hi, Mom!
  12. Daily Prompt: Hi, Mom! « Mama Bear Musings
  13. My Mum (WordPress Daily Prompt) | Ireland, Multiple Sclerosis and Me
  14. Happy Mother’s Day | An Unlikely Gypsy…
  15. My Mom Is 99; Top That! | The Jittery Goat
  16. Daily Prompt: Hi, Mom! | JUkk
  17. The dirt beneath my feet (Daily Prompt) | liveuntil
  18. Dear Mum … | Purplesus’ Blog
  19. She Got It From Her Mama | That Girl Ryan
  20. 12.5 Daily Prompt: Hi, Mom! | family photos food & craft
  21. Daily Prompt: Hi, Mom! | suzie81’s Blog
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  23. A Message for A Special Lady | the world behind the lens
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  25. To where you are | Relax…
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  27. Happy Mother’s Day, Mama! | eagerexplorer
  28. Hi, Mom! | The Nameless One
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  30. The Other Light: A Mother’s Day Story | theeyelife
  31. My Maamah | Hera Pereira
  32. Daily Prompt: Hi Mom! | Chronicles of an Anglo Swiss
  33. Hi, Mom! | Michael Writes
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  35. mon travail | Daily Prompt: Hi, Mom!
  36. Six weeks in hospital | Scribbles by a hunglish girl 🙂
  37. World’s best Mama enjoy your day! | Pinkpodster Ponders
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  39. Dear Mom | Daily Prompt: Hi, Mom! | Perfect Medium.
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  42. Daily Prompt: Hi, Mom! 12th May 2013 | ittikorn1994
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  47. Mother’s Day 2013 Reflections | CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS
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  53. WP Daily Prompt: Hi, Mom! | CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS
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  55. An Open Letter to my Jehovah’s Witness Mom | Cozy Compulsions @ Midnight
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  59. A Letter To My Mom | Little Red Jenn
  60. Daily Prompt: Happy Mother’s Day | My Daily Prompt Blog
  61. Dear Mom | Travellin’ Thru Rambles
  62. Unfinished — Short Story | I am a heathen.
  63. An Open Letter From Mom | Misifusa’s Blog
  64. Experiment. — Dear Mom: Motherhood is a Science and Patience is not a variable. | mommyverbs
  65. Stitching it together: a family art collection for Mother’s Day | caroline larnach
  66. DP Challenge – Hi, Mom | hometogo232
  67. This day I dedicate to mamma | MindBlur
  68. Mom’s Day! | Kaleidoscopic World in Words
  69. Daily Prompt: Hi, Mum! | The Tarot Alchemist
  70. Dear Mom | The Dodson Citizen
  71. Daily Prompt: Mommy | Morrighan’s Muse
  72. Daily Prompt : worth a thousand words | The Road 2 Cute Shoes
  73. I forgive you… | The Local Lens
  74. Dear Mama | The Teen Theme
  75. Floral in Gray: Mother’s Day Rose | 2812 photography
  76. Mothers Day Tears | Sisters of Christ
  77. DEAR MOMMY…do you miss me? | Don’t Carry The Donkey!
  78. Daily Prompt: Hi Mom | Running After Ale
  79. The Woman in the Background | The Other Courtney

14 Comments

Filed under Daily Prompt, Essays, Mom

What The Beep Is That Sound At McDonald’s

There she stands, next to  McDonald's,just as I remember her; a victim of misinformation.

There she stands, next to McDonald’s,just as I remember her; a victim of misinformation.

You ever go into McDonalds (I know you do. There are plenty of McDonald’s deniers out there). My parenthetical phrase was so long I forgot what I was going to write about. Oh, I remember; You ever go into McDonalds, wait for the order, and that annoying beeper starts going-off – beep, beep, beep, beep, beep, beep. Annoying isn’t it.

The beeping is the timer on the French fryer. The idiot French fry guy is not manning his station, but instead is some place rolling a joint, popping a zit, or cleaning his nails with his teeth.

The fact that you have been listening to it for two minutes means the fries are near to burnt sacrifices by now. They are so saturated with enough globs of grease that an artery will be clogged within thirty seconds after consumption. You will keel over and die clutching your heart like some guy at Parisian street café in a scene from a spy movie.

That noise is worse than water-boarding. One day I was already to confess to letting the air out of Mr. Basinger’s tires my junior year in high school.

Now that I know what it is I just say, “Will somebody get the daggon fries!”

The first time hearing it I thought it was a cement truck backing up. I yelled, “Out of the way, we’ll all be crushed.” Was I ever embarrassed.

Two days later a cement truck was about to back over an old lady with a walker. I yelled out, “French fries! Not to worry.”

Well they poured the cement anyway and she was too slow to get out of the way. She is now proudly encased in cement in front of McDonalds’s as a beautiful tribute, monument, and reminder of old age, slow reflexes, and misinformation.

2 Comments

Filed under Essays

The Costco Parking Lot; An Alternate Universe Might Exist

Strange things occur in a Costco parking lot, but if I ever come out to an empty one…

When I go to Costco something happens to me. I’m one person when going in and a completely different one when coming out. I’m convinced it’s not me, but the world I come out to.

By the time I get out it’s the world that has changed; well maybe not the world, but the parking lot. There is a whole new assortment of cars. That’s the way it appears, anyway. Frankly, for all I know they are the same cars just arranged differently.

The thought has occurred to me is to go in to Costco for about three minutes and suddenly bolt out to see if I can catch everybody rearranging the cars.

When I pull into the parking lot I take note of where I am in position to the building, the approximate shadow cast by the sun, and the cars parked around me. I’m growing ever more suspicious and weary, there is always an empty spot between a white Escalade and a blue Volvo station wagon. When I come out the Escalade is in the gas line and the Volvo is being towed away. Next to my car, if I can find it, is blue Toyota Camry and a Citroen. Yeah a Citroen it’s like one of those weird French movies full of bizarre symbolism. I next expect to see an old man selling balloons. This happens at least four or five times a year. There is a definite pattern emerging. Two or three more visits and I‘ll have it all figured out. Am I unlocking the code to predict future events; the next economic crises, unforeseen political events, and who will be the next Honey Boo Boo? (The spirit and capacity to predict human ignorance can never be captured and quantified. Stupidity is a creative endeavor that knows no limits or known predictable patterns.)

The other day I’m heading out in the general direction of where my car was parked and no car. I look for my Escalade, Volvo, Camry, and Citroen. If only three are seen I can triangulate. They aren’t there. I don’t even see an old man selling balloons. I grab my keys from my pocket and depress the alarm; nothing. I can be inside the diary cooler at Costco, the doors can shut, press my remote alarm and it will go off. Here I am in the parking lot and nothing. I hold it high over my head like I used to do to get better reception from my UHF rabbit ears antenna (Google it.) and still nothing.

For crying out loud if I don’t find my keys and get home before long my Haagen Dazs bars will melt.

I’m panicking and pressing and pressing and pressing. Suddenly I feel as if I’ve come out into an alternate universe that has no place for me. I’m walking around with the remote over head depressing it. I’m starting to draw attention. They all have this somebody-call-the-nursing-home look on their faces. And some of those people are older than me. I thought about calling my daughter, but I may not even have a daughter in the alternate universe.

Suddenly somebody honks. ’I must be in somebody’s way,’ I thought. They keep honking and honking and honking and honking. I turn around and it’s my car. There goes my alternate universe theory.

6 Comments

Filed under Essays

Running: My 8th Week

June 17

My inspiration for the week.

I’m thinking about changing the name of this series of blogs from “Running” to “The Gout Chronicles.” I simply can’t run.

At this point I’m too ill to go on the exercise bike.

I drove to Emmett Idaho today; about a forty-five minute drive. I gave a talk and on my feet for thirty-minutes. I felt pretty good.

A friend said he was given indomethacin. “One pill and it was gone.”

I have theory I’d like to proclaim; I’m on medicare. It is their intent to keep me coming back until I’m dead or so miserable I want to die. The guy who got the indomethacin was still a productive part of society. Sure they’re going to keep him going.

June 18

Very sore today. Songs have been written about cocaine, LSD, and marijuana; but none about hydrocodon. I think the time is here.

An old high school buddy, Bob Hempker, sent an email today and suggested I change the name of my blog to “The Jittery Gout.” Funny, very funny.

June 19

Family came over for supper. The foot is sore, but tolerable; not so much the grandkids.

June 20

The pain is very intense today. I’d have to rank this as my worst day. It seems like with all the medication, rest, and time it should be better.

I promised my wife if it’s like this tomorrow I will call a podiatrist friend.

June 21

I got a hold of my doctor’s assistant. They prescribed another product from the vast monolithic evil pharmaceutical empire. Colcrys was prescribed; take two pills every hour until gone. (Six pills, you do the math)

June 22

I talked with my son this morning. I told him that, all kidding aside, I really miss running.

I’m wondering if I’m a part of a study and that I’m a part of the group given a placebo. I slept quite a bit today and when not sleeping was still tired.

June 23

I still have swelling, but the pain has nearly subsided. It’s time to pop the corks.

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Running: My 7th Week

My inspiration for the week; Walter Brennan.

June 10

Can’t walk

June 11

Saw my personal physician today at 8:00 AM.

He said I have gout. There will be more on this in the future, but this diagnosis could have been rendered nearly two weeks ago. So for around two weeks I’ve had to live with a kidney stone in my foot.

June 12

Can’t walk.

June 13

Limp like Walter Brennan. (See YouTube clip at the end.)

June 14

I did three miles on my bike.

June 15

I’m feeling better. This entire week has been spent depressed and physically ill. Probably the medications. I don’t take them well. Each time I take them there is a different side effect. Neither of which I enjoy.

I went through the entire 60’s without so much as taking whiff of marijuana, no acid trips, or mushroom parties. Now that I’m in my 60’s I’m starting to experience the effects drugs have. If I took them then the only thing I would have missed were the 60’s.

June 16

Still have some occasional sharp pain in my foot.

Look what my life has come to; talking about my foot!

Now I know I’m old. What’s next incontinence?

A YouTube clip of the Walter Brennan limp. It’s comes at the end of the clip.

12 Comments

Filed under Running

Running: My 3rd Week

Running: My 1st Week

Running: My 2nd Week

May 13

My inspiration for this week; dangle a Krispy Kreme donut in front of me and I’m likely to plunge over the edge of a cliff.

I didn’t run, but I did go to Five Guys’. They were really, really good today.

May 14

No breeze and 54 degrees.

I’m not at the point where I’m snobbishly looking away from cars that drive by and I think, ‘Look at me. Now look at you, you poor excuse for human flesh. What is it you are eating as you drive by; a greasy breakfast sandwich from McDonald’s? Don’t you wish you were like me?’

I ran a little more than half my run with less exhaustion and more ease than I was running only a few hundred yards two weeks ago.

I have a more sober evaluation of goals. I first wanted to be running three miles by the end of three months. Given my age and lack of a past exercise routine for quite some time, it may be four months. I’m not thirty. I can’t push myself to beyond exhaustion which is how I used to run.

May 15

I Didn’t run. The heating and air-conditioning guy is supposed to finish installing new units. It’s supposed to be 91 today. Boise 91 is like Ohio 75 – no humidity in Boise.

May 16

This is the start of the third week. Today I ran within 200 yards of a complete mile without stopping.

There is a ‘thunder hut’ (portable toilet) on my run. I may have to check it out. I think it’s following me, because each time it appears to be getting closer. I’m told paranoia takes many forms.

May 17

I didn’t run today, but I drove to Kispy Kreme Donuts and measured the distance. It’s five miles round-trip. That’s nearly a 10 K. Hmmm. Now that’s what I call motivation!

May 18

Today’s goal was to run a mile without slowing to a walk. When I turned west a 12 MPH wind hit me. ‘I’ll try the mile tomorrow.’ Turning south I thought ‘what the heck!’ I did it; one mile! I know that doesn’t sound like much, but I didn’t think I would be able to do that for another ten days.

Early in my run today there was a banana peel on the sidewalk. I looked ahead and sure enough; a clown was pacing me.

May 19

Instead of skipping a day I’m going to run.

I fought quitting today. I wanted to walk after a half mile and felt myself really wanting to ease into a walk, but continued till the mile was finished.

Right at the end of my run a sprinkler system came on and showered me. I didn’t want to come home and shower anyway. Life is so full of unexpected opportunities.

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Filed under Running