Quite chilly here this morning. Snow icing rooftops in the hood, every house a gingerbread house. Not to worry over too much sugar; it’s the thinnest veneer. Overcast skies continue to spritz occasional flakes. Not winter by “up north” standards, but still chilly enough to show you your breath as you go about odd outside chores, make you appreciate a heavy jacket and watchman’s cap.
What seems to me hesitant flakes intermittently falling may be my eyebones playing tricks on me. My eyebones and my puny brain’s interpretation of collected data they relay to it are still not exactly one hundred percent considering recent, um, adjustments.
Which leads me to explain…
Mostly advancing age recently treated me to eye surgery. Two surgeries. On sale, pretty much buy one, get one. Cataracts. For a fact, not on a par with vision difficulty others experience. Nonetheless, two months of prelim-to-post-op hoops and hurdles and discussion of possibilities, highly unlikely of course, made me consider less-than pleasant outcomes.
Readers know my mind doesn’t work like most everyone else’s. Naturally, several scenarios mentally played-out. Again, naturally, not content with what was, “what if” and “just suppose” materialized. A short story, fiction and flash of the under-one-thousand words category wrote itself. It subsequently required more revision and self-censoring than I particularly care for.
Then began social editing. That still may be the reason I chuck it all in. Toss in the towel as it were. Comes a point, you can’t say nothing about nothing. If “we,” society, maintain our present course. Whatever you say, or write, someone, somewhere will take offense, suffer hurt feelings, or consider you a radical, a monster, an unfeeling boob. Unless you smart-up, swap your membership card for one issued by the religion presently (we are led to believe) popular, righteous, and infallible. Refuse, you may be identified as a Repullican or worse,1 censured, outcast, and brought up on some trumped-up charge.
Sigh. Life, Sally, ain’t all grins and giggles. Somewhere, someone will feel cosmic indignation that your poem declared the sun a coward, hiding behind the clouds of momma’s apron. Dasn’t do things like that.
Other folks I know faced and still deal with vision problems. I’m now able to understand a bit more. A little bit more. The volunteer story, “Corrected Vision” is not a poke, a slight, or insensitivity. It is simply a piece of speculative fiction born out of my own experience. If you for one, feel it might cause you distress in any way, as it involves vision difficulties, don’t go looking for it.
Go looking for it? Yup. I’m not even gonna post a link. You’re interested, you must go find it. Then, if you’re offended in any way, it’s your fault.
It’s a little odd that a real horse’s patootie2 should be concerned with inadvertently offending someone or hurting their feelings. But that’s the way it is. It may be a flaw I should work to overcome. Long shot, but it may mean that there’s a decent individual somewhere inside this old curmudgeon. Not likely, but possible. At times it’s a pain in this horse’s patootie.
What single word might in a bit of wordplay be interpreted as an undressed formic quartet?
Some clever wordsmiths out there might glom onto an answer quickly. Poemiticians especially, and others with minds slightly askew who routinely contort words. Maybe not. No answer here in this post, so as not to spoil it for my other two readers.3
On the odd chance no one blurts out an answer in comments, I’ll deliver my answer in my next post. Tomorrow or the next day. Or the next.
Excuse me. I must go wax my snow shovel.
— Notes —
1 Not sure there is a worse than Repullican. Fashionably at present worse than being a liar, a thief, influence-peddler, senile old bat, a womanizing sleepy old gaff, crazy misguided youth, condescending witch, or lawless brick shopper. No, now, wait, see what you done? You’ve caused me to make some Repullican’s feelings hurt. Um, sense that may be the only social group you can impugn with immunity. Perhaps I’ll be called in and awarded a medal for advancing the cause of national serfdom.
2 Horse’s patootie. Impolitely, a horse’s ass.
3 Okay. I hear someone complain they have COVID-clearance to travel to Topeka to visit Aunt Agatha. That’s two weeks out and two weeks back. They don’t have a reader app on their cell. Auntie Agg doesn’t do the computer thing. They don’t want to be burdened with reading all my posts between the time they leave and when they return. They ask a bit of forbearance on my part, that I relax the rules for this blog adjunct, providing the answer for those who cannot quickly figure it out. Remaining somewhat recalcitrant, I’ll go this far: I’ll embed the answer somewhere in this post. Now it’s an egg hunt.