Published to face book June 14
By Dr. I.B. Agnostic
At age six I read the warning on the Q-Tip box and learned how dangerous the world is. By putting my new found reading skills to use I read the printed warning and learned that Q-Tips can be dangerous. According to the warning they can never be placed inside the ear. To do so can cause irrevocable damage to the inner ear and all assorted parts including; I imagined at age six; brain damage. This was my first big foray into the world of big words and labeled warnings. I was impressed that Q-Tips could be so dangerous.
At age ten I jumped onto a ten-speed bike for the first time and was admonished by my older brother to never touch the front wheel brake. “No matter what, do not use the front wheel brake”, he said. His warning came with no clarification. I simply was not to use the front wheel brake. I wondered why a brake would be built onto the bike if I wasn’t supposed to be used. I did of course use the front brake and was immediately thrown over the front of the bike onto the street where I slid a bit before coming to a stop.
By age eleven I had learned that the printed warning on the Q-Tip package holds no credence because I had already stuffed a few of those fuzzy cotton balls into my inner ear and suffered no damage and I had already used a front wheel brake and had paid no lasting consequences. By age twelve I had learned that my DNA was such that I would never heed a written or verbal warning for the remainder of my life.
Let’s say for a moment that a Thai lady is similar to a Q-tip. My friends have warned me about these gals yet I have traveled to Thailand anyway. Every year males from all over the world exodus to Thailand just to rub up against something soft and cuddly that can cause irrevocable brain damage. Yet, despite the warnings; verbal or written, we all continue to clean our ears with Q-Tips.
564 words 598, 625, 628, 556, 588, 594, 495, 383, 364, 365, 365, 357, 353, 359
Posted on FaceBook April 11, 2013
By Freddy Feedlot
My wife and I dropped into a local restaurant for an early dinner. We talked with the owner a moment before we got the menu and started matching photos with the written descriptions in Thai. Our waitress stood by. I pointed to my selection and tried to pronounce the Thai. That didn’t work so I moved my finger over the photo. The waitress said “My Me.”
Unconcerned I looked at the menu again and found something else. I pointed and tried to pronounce my choice in Thai. Again my pronunciation was off but my finger was over a new photo. “My Me.” she said.
I wasn’t concerned. I pointed at something else. “My Me.” she said.
I’ve lived in Thailand a long time. I figured it was my pronunciation and I had the one waitress in Thailand who wasn’t going to let me off the hook until I pronounced every word correctly. I still wasn’t concerned. I pointed to something else. Again, “My Me.”
From the back of the restaurant the owner started talking to my wife. I held off doing anything else because I knew the discussion was about my order. My wife listened and then looked at me and as if talking about the weather told me that the cook had run off earlier in the week.
Not comprehending I continued to order, “Kha-POW- gia-kia-dow” unable to believe they wouldn’t have that. That was like ordering a peanut butter and jelly sandwich on white bread. The waitress went for the kitchen…. I soon heard rustling in the kitchen and shortly thereafter two plates of hot Kha POW-gia-kia dow were served.
I was puzzled. “If the cook is not here and we cannot order food how did this come about?” My wife told me that the owner called up to her twelve year old son and had him come downstairs to cook because he knows how to cook. I asked if the mother knows how to cook.
“No”, my wife said, as if she had something more to say about the weather.
314 words 322, 359, 333, 350
Greenwich in our Time
By John Stretchmoore
Greenwich must be a sobering spot from which to stand and to contemplate the workings of the world; if it is not raining of course. Greenwich, England is where a group of learned individuals with good intentions decided that Greenwich was the spot from which all time on earth should be measured and from which a person from anywhere else in the world could reference and know in a minute precisely where they were in relationship to all others; quite a feat for 1851.
I can imagine the opening ceremony where these learned people hob knobbed in the garden wearing their best woolen garments with lacy frills whilst stone masons labored to set the beginning and ending of time firmly in place in the garden outside the Royal Observatory. Henceforth these stones proclaimed to the world that time starts at this spot in Greenwich before circling the globe westward only to return from the East exactly twenty-four hours later. Greenwich proclaimed itself the time keeper of the world that morning and it can only be imagined that those learned men responsible for such a project were so full of themselves that they cut loose early that day to imbibe in something more than tea and cake. History does not record how far they traveled but it is rumored they made it no more than a fraction of a degree west before availing themselves of libation at the nearest watering hole.
An expanding Empire was a justifiable cause for Brits to erect an edifice in their home garden that could be seen and studied by the rest of us throughout the world whether our sun had set or not. An accurate chronometer that could be fostered onto the world as a reminder to all of us that we had a duty to be punctual and to know where we were at the same time was a proclamation from a benevolent Empire, to the rest of us. Thus, Greenwich was selected as the permanent spot from which everyone was duty bound to take their measure.
Having been born American I cannot remember a time when accuracy in those things of time was not important, however, one is not born punctual and I do remember chafing with indignation from time to time as a child when time or lack of time was somehow the cause for all my interrupted freedom. Then at age nine I learned just how important time is. I was navigating through the third grade when I learned of Greenwich Mean Time and the Prime Meridian and how I had actually been on a time clock all my life because of that spot in Britain where time started and ended by proclamation and having been born to a civilized union my parents told me I should get used to time constraints. So I did.
After cajoling my Mom she bought me my first wrist watch and I must say I have been on track ever since. With that time piece and an occasional adjustment here and there with Greenwich I have been able to negotiate my way from childhood right up through retirement without ever having been late for anything. I would say this would be a proud accomplishment were it not for the fact that practically everyone in the world has jumped the same hoops of punctuality and known exactly where they were since that morning in 1851.
Thais are the exception. Thai’s didn’t’ buy into that Greenwich Mean Time thing and excused themselves from the opportunity to know where they are by determining their longitude and latitude from coordinates embedded in a statue mounted in a garden on the other side of the world. Being punctual or knowing where you are has never been important to a Thai, however, for some reason, if you have come to Thailand to get your clock totally cleaned by experts who care the least about time you may have lost your way but you have come to the right place… for sure.
Have I left you hanging?
Words 486, 559, 542, 578, 635, 642,658, 700, 706, 707, 695, 685