Normally, I don’t blog about my life. My blog posts tend to be impersonal reflections on language and reality. But recently, I’ve been stuck trying to come up with interesting word insights. I’ve been working on a list of new definitions, but who cares that if you add an extra ‘s’ to promising it becomes a word for a missing prom (promissing)?
So while that post is on hold until I regain some inspiration, I thought I’d share a story of what happened to me the other day. This incident would either define me as a shlimazel or a shlimeil, I’m not sure which, maybe both – any Yiddish experts out there?
To place this story in some context, I had officially started a diet about a week before the Glasses Incident. My stepson has been annoyingly helpful in keeping me loyal to my diet. On this particular day, I had just driven some middle school students home from a field trip, and was refueling the school van, with my stepson in the front passenger seat. I managed to distract him in a very clever maneuver involving the radio and a dropped notebook. I did this so that I could reach across the van to surreptitiously grab a bag with a chocolate-peanut butter cupcake that I had secretly purchased at a stop on the field trip. I was quite proud of myself for deceiving my stepson. But, when he saw me take a bite of the illicit cupcake, he snatched the cupcake, put it back in the bag, and commenced to beating me about the head with it. In the fray that ensued, my glasses flew off. I couldn’t find them, but assumed that they were somewhere in the van. We drove back to the school to clean out and return the van. My glasses were nowhere to be found.
It occurred to us that the glasses may have flown out the window when I was trying to avoid being beaten with the cupcake, so I drove back to the gas station where the cupcake malay had occurred. As we approached the station, I saw a woman bend down near the street and pick something up. In my blurry vision I thought it must be my glasses. I swerved the van toward her, rolled down my window and loudly asked her if she had my glasses. It turned out that she had been stooping down to pick up a cigarette. She seemed somewhat freaked out by me as I tried to explain why I had been shouting to her about my glasses and she hurried away.
I continued to drive into the gas station to park when I heard a crunching sound not unlike the sound of a van driving over a pair of glasses. My stepson thought I had driven over my glasses, but I actually thought the glasses were really still lost somewhere in the van. To humor him, I got out of the van and looked underneath, where, lo and behold, I found the fragments of my former glasses.
My stepson found this entire ordeal extremely amusing, and still talks about the freaked-out woman I accidentally terrorized while she was picking up a cigarette.
As an aside, I think I should mention that these had been an old pair of back-up glasses, as I had long before lost my real glasses. I took the broken glasses to an eyeglass store and while they were trying to piece them back together, I purchased a new pair of glasses. Miraculously, the eyeglass professionals were able to fix my glasses. Since I had also ordered a new pair, I then had two pairs of functioning glasses. When I came out of the store and got into my wife’s car, I reached under the seat, on a whim, and found the old lost pair of glasses from long ago. So, then I had 3 pairs of glasses. I have since lost one pair, in case you are keeping track.
I think that if this story has a moral, and every story should, or else it’s hard to bring it to a satisfying end, it’s that one should stick to one’s diet.
And now for something completely different: Mollusks are Taking Over the World. Click the flower to learn more: