Saturday, Jan. 12, 42 A.B.

Time Is On My Side...

... and on my back, and on my front, and on my head - ACK!  HELP!  GET IT OFF ME!!!  GET IT OFF ME!!!

Sorry.  I - I kinda lost it there for a second.  It's just that it's already the 12th day of the year and I don't have any idea where all this time is coming from.  It's like the pipes which carry time into my home have burst and are flooding my life with rapidly mounting hours and drenching all the cells in my body with days and I'm afraid... I'm afraid I'm going to find myself all of a sudden a very old man up to his neck in years before I've found the emergency shut-off valve....

The new calendar I have hanging on my wall isn't helping matters.

I accidentally bought myself a tri-lingual calendar for 2002.  When I first realized my mistake I thought, "Hey - this'll give me three times as many days this year in which to do all I want to do!"  Instead, it seems that time is going by three times as fast.

And my place in history suddenly seems three times as confused.

This isn't merely January, you see.  It is also Janvier and Januar.  And today isn't merely Saturday - it's also Samedi and Samstag.  This means that when I stop and ask myself "What's the date today?" there are a record number of ways for me to get it wrong.  While last year at this time I was merely trying to recall whether it was December or January, Saturday or Sunday, 2000 or 2001, now I have to stop and wonder: Is it January or Decembre, Janvier or Dezember, Januar or December, Saturday or Sonntag, Dimanche or  -

The possible combinations seem endless!  And the time sickness I am subject to in even the best of times seems worse than ever before.  Much worse, in fact, than if I were to just throw my calendar away and guess wildly at the month and day.  Alas, guessing doesn't come with a pretty picture of a beaver in a bikini on its top half.  Guessing doesn't fit easily onto a rusty nail, or hide that mark on the wall left by my last attempt to eat spaghetti with an umbrella.  Guessing about the date might even cut down on the total amount of guessing I have left in me, leaving me impotent when it comes time to bolt upright in bed again and try to guess what dumb new ways our leaders might find to screw things up.

Enough!  I don't have time for this.  I'm just going to leave my calendar where it is and let it think I'm paying attention to it while I secretly jot down on my palm the date my wife has written on her calendar for tomorrow.  When tomorrow comes I'll just glance quickly at my palm when I think tomorrow isn't looking and hope for the best.  After all, what's the worse tomorrow can do to me if I'm wrong?  Fail me and make me retake its morning, noon, and night?  Ha!  That might well be EXACTLY what I need to slow the flow of time down!

Thank goodness I have TWO palms - one to write tomorrow's date down on before it gets here, and the other to jot down a reminder not to write that date down too damn accurately....    

The trick now is to calm my nerves before attempting to put this plan into action.

NOT an easy thing to do, considering that my newspaper told me today that

  • Buffo, the world's strongest clown, has carpal tunnel from years of  juggling bowling balls.  (If even Buffo has succumbed, what hope is there for the rest of us??)
  • Gen. Sunerajan Padmanabhan, chief of the Indian army, was quoted as saying that his nuclear-armed nation of 1 billion people was not only fully ready for war with nuclear-armed Pakistan but "If we go to war, jolly good."  Jolly good?!  Such a cavalier attitude toward war would be hard to accept  in the best of times; it is especially difficult to accept on top of the tragic Buffo situation.  I can only hope that if commanders in the field ever attempt to ring Gen. Padmanabhan up to request authorization to nuke Islamabad, those commanders can't recall how his name is pronounced or spelled and the operator consequently can't put the call through.
And on top of all that, today just happened to be the day we tried a new car wash.  I should have known enough to abort things when we discovered that prices started at $7 and ran all the way up to $12.  For a car wash!  Ok, I thought.  This is Columbus, I reminded myself.  No need to panic.  EVERYTHING is more expensive here.  So we forked over $10 and prepared ourselves for a typical car wash experience.  Oh, what innocents we were!  I've never seen so many swirling brushes before in my life!!  Nor had I ever suspected that soapy suds might come in yellow, blue, red, and green colors - all mixed up together!  For most of the 5 minute ride nothing but suds, cloth, steam, and water could be seen through the windows.  It was like passing through the digestive track of a whale or a sea monster!  And then - just when I thought we'd never see daylight again - there it was!  Just past the drying area and its 32 wildly-spinning hot-air nozzles!

It was a struggle, but I'm happy to report that we actually made it out into that daylight - just in time for a passing Canada goose to relieve itself on our hood.   

If my newspaper tells me tomorrow that what hit us was the result of an Indian commander with a poor telephone connection, I wouldn't be at all surprised.

In fact, nothing ought to surprise me tomorrow considering the number of sedatives I think I need to go take right now....

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(©Now by DJ Birtcher even though he has
no idea exactly when Now might be anymore)

Someday ALL executive offices will be replaced by drawers

Jester supervises the blather manufacturing process
from his prime position atop the good silverware.