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June 2018

The Stink Mobile

Smelly carIf you just saw a woman driving down the highway with all her windows open and her hand covering her nose, that was me. There are no words to describe how disgusting my car smells.

It all began last month, when I found out that our town was launching a pilot composting program. I was thrilled - I felt guilty throwing compostable stuff in the trash and adding to the landfill. But I didn't feel confident starting a compost pile in my own yard - we have enough wildlife between the deer, coyotes, foxes and raccoons.

Now all I had to do was collect the food scraps in biodegradable bags and ever so often carry it all to the town recycling center. 

My husband is a sweet and thoughtful man. This morning he volunteered to get my car inspected and to take the collected (and now moldering) compost bags into town. 

He says he doesn't know what happened. The bag didn't break or anything, and what's more it was in the trunk. So why does MY ENTIRE CAR STINK?  Smelly car 2

Not fully aware of the problem, I drove it to the gym after he came back. Trust me, I needed a shower before I worked out. After a few minutes in that vehicle, I smelled like garbage. 

Right now the offending car is sitting in the driveway, windows and trunk open with the interior liberally dusted with baking soda. Any other ideas? 



College Reunions

ReunionSaturday night, I was rocking out on the dance floor to "Taking Care of Business" (Bachman Turner Overdrive circa 1973) with my college classmates. It was reunion weekend, and I've never missed one - except for my 5th, when I was on my honeymoon. As I threw my arms up in the air and gyrated on aging hips, I flashed back to earlier reunions.

How pathetic the old geezers seemed - those classes celebrating 35th, 40th, 50th - even 60th and 70th - reunions. They'd march with their classes, proudly waving class signs, sporting class buttons, dressed in college logo gear. The parties were the worse - watching the oldsters trying to relieve their college glory days - grey hair and sagging bodies out on the dance floor listening to the music of their day.

Now I'm one of them. I look at the young classes dragging their toddlers around, and a few reunions later, talking about college admissions and their kids' chances of attending their alma mater. At the 25th, most people (at least the ones that show up) are at the top of their game, peaking in their careers, kids mostly launched, still physically sound. 

At my reunion this weekend, we said a prayer (non-denominational of course) for the 24 members of our class who had died. Many were lost to the early days of AIDS, a disease that soon after we graduated  mysteriously began killing off young men for no apparent reason. Cancer, suicides, heart attacks - the ravages of age. I was chatting to a classmate who is a cardiologist now (wait - that guy? Who was such a wild man? He's a doctor?!) and he says that the percentage of deaths in our class is consistent with the actuarial tables. 

Sometimes, visiting campus for a reunion is like being smack in the middle of your own actuarial table - you see where you've been - those pregnant bellies, those sweet kids, those driving energetic professionals - and you see where you're going - the walkers, the canes and the wheel chairs.

So yup, even five years from now, I hope I'll be on the dance floor pumping my fist to "I Can't Get No Satisfaction!" I'll look like a fool. But I'll keep dancing.