My sister Candy calls and says, “Hey, I just took Mom down the hill and got her a new haircut and took her for a nice lunch. Can we come by and I’ll show you her new hairdo?”

“Sure. I’d love to see you!” I say.

I rush to take off my tacky house dress because don’t you know, it’s a hot day and I didn’t bother to dress for anything but the heat.

My mom and sister show up and ‘oh’ and ‘ah’ about my re-modeled house. It seems they have seen it since it’s been remodeled but it’s OK, if they want to make more nice remarks.

We end up in my bedroom-sitting room because it is so pleasant. The bedroom part is gold and the sitting area is aqua. Sun pours in the three curved windows to the west, onto my blue vase which is sitting on a glass table, filled with brilliant yellow sunflowers.

I put Mom in my yellow striped chair and crank the bed up for Candy and me to recline on. I can touch a button and the bed lifts to a sitting position and I can crank some more and the end goes up until your feet are reaching for the moon. It is very nice.

Candy says she has stopped drinking wine as it is making her fat, but pretty soon, she suggests we have a bit of wine. Mother agrees. I use small glasses.

Mother has a glass of wine and says, “Oh my. I can certainly feeeel this.” She always says that.

We all hang out in my lovely room and chat for maybe two hours. Mother’s white hair is divine and it is curling up around her face.

Candy says, “With that haircut, you look ten years younger!”

Candy says her hair dresser did a nice job and that she and Mom then went to the Fish Grill for lunch. They had fried fish and chips. Both Mom and Candy agree that it was way too much fried food for them and they won’t be doing that, again.

Mother keeps looking at her watch. She is worried about her dog Becky who is perfectly fine, but Mother always thinks Becky is lonely and missing her.

Finally, Candy says, “Mom, do you want to go home and check on Becky?”
She does, so the fun day is over.

I walk Mom and Candy to the car. Mom is looping all over the patio walk from drinking one glass of wine, so we have to watch her and sometimes give her a nudge to keep her upright.

We get Mom in the car and she looks up at me and says, “Oh thank you Honey, for the wonderful haircut and the wonderful lunch.”

I say, “What?”

I look at Candy who is in the drivers seat. She looks at me and raises her eyebrows.

Mom repeats her thanks to me for the wonderful haircut, lunch and day. I squeeze up my face and grin at Candy and say to Mom, “Oh, gee, you’re so welcome, Mom!”

No good deed goes unnoticed, even if it is misapplied, I guess.
Candy is laughing and shaking her head.

It’s now the next day and I stop by my mother’s house to take her some ripe apricots off my tree.

She says, “Oh, the strangest thing happened, Honey. When I got up this morning, I couldn’t find Sassy. I could hear her yowling, but I couldn’t find her.”

Sassy is the black and white cat that Mom took in when the cat needed a home. Sassy is a maladjusted cat. She is also unpredictably mean. She lived in an auto shop, before she came to Mother, where the male customers teased and treated her badly. She developed a mean persona because of her upbringing but Mother tries to love her, anyway.

Mother continues, “When Skip came to help me this morning, you know he’s building the patio, I called him in and I said, ‘I can hear Sassy but I can’t find her. Can you listen and find her?'”
Skip said, ‘I can’t hear so well, myself. Let’s call Jeranimo in.’

“So, Jeranimo came in and looked around a bit and then he said, ‘Could she be in the dryer?’
I opened the dryer and there she was!”

“Oh, my gosh,” I say, “how did that happen, Mom?”

“Well, yesterday, I noticed the dryer door was open and so I shut it. She must have been in there when I shut it.”

“Oh, my gosh,” I say, again. “I bet she was crying and meowing all night and you couldn’t hear her because your hearing aides were out.”

I think a bit and then I say, “She was in there a long time. Did she pee in the dryer?”

“Oh yes!” Mom says, “and much, much worse! She did everything in the dryer. It was a terrible, terrible mess and she was coated with poop and pee and you know how Sassy is, I wouldn’t dare try and clean her up.”

I am gagging.

Mom says, “I have cleaned and cleaned the dryer and next I think I will have to dry some old towels in it, before I even attempt to dry my clothes.”

I say, “Well Mom, shit happens.”

Which reminds me. I have brought Mom that bag of apricots off my tree which I now hand to her.

Mom says, “Remember that year you ate so many of these apricots that they gave you a problem?”

I do remember.

These apricots are so good that I was eating what seemed like tons of them off my big tree that year. One day I was up town, driving toward home when oh, my gosh! I said out-loud to myself and the car, “Oh! MY gosh! I am not going to make it home!”

I was dumbstruck and horrified.
Quick, I pulled off the road, onto my Mom’s property, stopped the car just barely, raced into her house, ran past my mother and threw myself head first into her bathroom.

I was really surprised. I didn’t know a bunch of apricots could do that to a person.

Well, shit happens.

What you have to do is find the humor in these circumstances, whether it’s eating too many apricots, or getting locked in a dryer for almost a day or having some other strange and bothersome something happen in your life; hey, shit happens. Don’t get too worked up about it, you have a lot of company. Everybody gets covered with and reeks of the stuff sometimes, even if it’s only metaphorically.
Offer good through July 11th, 2008. Null and void after that.

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