Monday, March 02, 2020


As is fitting, today was a day of strange conversations. Fitting for several reasons, the primary ones being that where I work the demographic most likely to croak from a stray corona virus infection OR senile driving tend to congregate, and it was the end of my workweek. So I was a bit frazzled.
I had struggled with six pipes belonging an emeritus professor with horrible smoking habits. My lord these were in bad shape. Caked up to a fare-thee-well. Could barely get half a pinky into the bowl. The last time I saw smoking equipment this bad was an item that I still have as an object lesson for other tobacco aficionados, the time before that, it was an opium pipe encrusted with decades of self-indulgent behaviour by a scrawny wreck in the tropics.

This was the first time I've ever had to use a drill for unclogging.

Fie! Fie! Fie! BAD emeritus professor!

First conversation: Marinites today engaged in a toilet paper and Spam™ frenzy over at Costco due to fears that the corona virus will strike at any time. Toilet paper can be traded on the black market, and for sure the government will outlaw it during emergencies. Also, it starts going bad after half a year in your fortified garage or suburban ranch house. And Spam™ cannot be barbecued very well, but is great with tofu. Non gmo tofu.
I now know more about toilet paper and potted meat (plus tofu) than before, but I refuse to ration my pooing. Worst comes to worst, I'll use election literature, and ask Sear Roebuck to send me a catalogue.

Second conversation: In which I promised to come to work every day and hug the old bastards if I become infected. As well as lick Richard all over his bald scalp instead, because he's very tall, and has knobby hips.

Third conversation: some older men have trouble peeing, apparently, and must spend several minutes thinking about wet things to get their bladder in the mood. He mentioned running faucets, shower stalls, pools of standing water, doing the dishes ..... so I continued listing wetness for him, "rivers, waterfalls, overflowing storm sewers, bath tubs, rushing torrents, splashing brooks, the wild surf rolling in, thunder storms, tropical deluges ..... "
As he rushed back to the loo he scowled at me.
Didn't see him again for ten minutes.
He returned looking pale.

And his cigar had gone out.

"Joe, remember monsoons when you were overseas?"

Apparently, Atboth (this writer) is one big meanie. I'm horrid.
Hey, does a Dutchman know about water or what?!?

Conversation four: Obama sold us to the Taliban, but Trump saved us. Same with Ebola. The people who wish us harm ALSO have Ebola.
That's the reason for travel bans from some countries.
It's a well-known fact.

Conversation five: Green cigars are a reminder of the type of shrunken old man that used to hog the fast lane while going fifty miles an hour, who could barely look over the steering wheel, had a permanent scowl on his face, and whose breath smelled of tuna salad sandwiches. Which made one of the old boys near the heater recall the best tuna sandwich he had ever eaten.
It was in Florida, where there are plenty of such fossils.
He reminisced fondly, at length.

Green cigars have an outside leaf (the "wrapper") which is called either a candela or a double claro. Which reminded someone of Corona Beer.
Back to discussion of the virus.

Final note: The older you are, the greater the likelihood that toxins and heavy metals have built up in your tissues, decreasing your edibility as far as emergency Zombie Apocalypse dining is concerned.
I do not know why this is good to know.

I remain convinced that cigar smoking can do bad things to the brain, and appeals to people who have a natural susceptibility to faulty thinking.

You know, I'm a pipe smoker. We are far more cerebral.
Dining on coffee and shortbread now that I'm off.
This is some damned good shortbread.
Made fresh today by a friend.
A fellow pipe smoker.
Thanks, Neil.


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