Al's World
I met him in Juneau, Alaska. He shared a meal with my wife and me. He was from Baltimore. He told us that he grew up in the Panhandle of Florida. He had been in the 8th grade before he had to wear shoes to school. I told him that I was from Minnesota. I was in the 8th grade before I didn’t have to wear dummy strings with my mittens.

Valerie Houser drove a rural mail route in Pennsylvania for over 30 years. The worst thing she ever had happen on her travels delivering the mail was when she ran over a duck. I suspect the duck had been waiting by the mailbox for a bill.

She was 96 years old and told me that she was an avid reader of the newspaper. She said that she read each issue thoroughly. I told her that I was glad to hear that. She added that there was only one part of the paper she didn’t bother to read. I asked her what that was. She replied, “The want ads. At my age, you don’t want much.”

My bride and I were motoring down the highway one night. We saw a car with only one operating headlight. I have always called such a vehicle a padiddle. In an earlier life, any time such a vehicle was spotted, a kiss was called for. I didn’t learn that during driver’s training.

“I couldn’t help overhear you guys talking about eavesdropping. You said that old Misery there is worth a million dollars.”
“Well, he may have a million dollars, but he’s not worth it.”
“I could not fail to disagree with you less, but don’t be bitter just because one of you is rich and the other is you. The old skinflint was born with money.”
“Wow! I’ll bet his mother was surprised. I didn’t see my shadow here. I thought I’d gone home. I’m on a great new diet.”
“You’re on a diet? You who thinks Copenhagen tobacco is one of the four basic food groups?”
“Yes, I’m on a wonderful diet. No lutefisk. Maybe it will help me remember where I left my car keys. I’m always losing those things.”
“You should carry your keys in a self-addressed stamped envelope. It’s so cold, I stuck my nose outside and it came back with a Birds Eye label on it. I saw a turkey that was no bigger than a robin today.”
“Sounds like you’re looking through the wrong end of your binoculars again. I often say that life is like pickled beets.”
“Why do you say that?”
“I don’t know. I’m no philosopher. I’ve decided to have my fun now while I’m too old to have any regrets. It comes quicker each year.”
“What’s that?”
“Christmas. It’s sneaking up on us again and it seems like we just got over the last one.”
“Yeah, I know what you mean. I love Christmas, but not all the hassle.”
“Well, try to look at it this way ...”
“What way is that?”
“It’ll be over soon.”

Some pirates had pelicans on their shoulders instead of parrots. The pelicans didn’t talk much, but they had plenty of storage space.
It’s difficult for a man to find a greeting card that expresses a thought that his wife would believe.
One of the signs of getting older is when you start noticing how young teachers look.
Avoid any foods that look like the flu.
Dodgeball taught me how to cross a street. 
Never remove the extra coat and gloves from your pickup until you have started using the air conditioner. 
Never buy a pit bull from a one-armed man.
Class reunions remind us that the old familiar faces become older and less familiar.

When dry leaves rattle on the trees, expect snow.
Frequent halos or rings around the sun or moon forecast numerous snowfalls.
Packed snow begins to squeak underfoot at a temperature below 14 degrees Fahrenheit.
If it is snowing hard enough that you can’t use your high beams because of the reflection, the snow is falling at a rate of at least one inch an hour.
No snowflake ever falls in the wrong place.
The date of the first snow determines the number of snows sufficient to make a rabbit track visible that will fall during the winter. For example, if the first trackable snow fell on the 16th of the month, there would be 16 snows that winter. Two or three day snows would count as just one.
The number of fogs in an autumn tells the number of snows in a winter. 

Kind hearts are the gardens. Kind thoughts the roots. Kind words the flowers. Kind deeds the fruits. Be kind. I wish you a blessed Thanksgiving.

©Al Batt 2006