The Thought for the Day – Adolph Hitler

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 I didn’t know how or when, but I have waited for this day, and tonight I am here.
Adolph Hitler, quoted in a biography by Peter Toland


We forget the exact context the quote was from. It was from late in the book and it may very well have been from his last day alive, April 30, 1945. Hitler’s headquarters was about to overrun by the Soviet Red Army. He and his longtime mistress Eva Braun the day before and had spent the early part of April 30 preparing to lose the war and saying goodbye to staff members. Later, Hitler compelled his wife to kill herself by biting into a cyanide capsule after which he shot himself in the head.

Hitler, however, died in midafternoon, so it may well have been some other time. No matter. That Hitler was an evil a person as our species has produced is acknowledged. We are not pro-Hitler here at The Thought for the Day. Todays‘ Thought merely illustrates how Hitler had a complete sense of himself and what he was meant to do while he was on this planet. Unfortunately, that meant death and tragedy for millions of people.

I didn’t know how or when, but I have waited for this day…

We should all have a sense of ourselves, a sense of how we are supposed to spend our time on this planet. If we do, and we live the life we were meant to live, we might be surprised at how life works out.

My personal example, not for the first time, comes from sports officiating, something I did an awful lot of for many years and something I still engage in from time to time.

The story starts when I was a boy. I was in the habit of reading The Los Angeles Times with my dad in the morning and one day – May 16, 1981, to be exact – I open the sports page and something called Len Barker of the Cleveland Indians had pitched a perfect game, which is where the pitcher gets every batter out. Nobody gets on base. From then on perfect games had my complete interest and sometimes while officiaiting I wondered if, perhaps, I might umpire one one day.

Came close once, an out away, and the final inning are ten minutes or so of my life I will never forget. I waited, with no guarantee it would ever come, and there I was. I didn’t know how or when, but I always suspected I would get a crack at one.

Will you be there when your day comes? You can’t if you do not put yourself in a position to be there.

…tonight I am here.

One of our favorite themes here at The Thought for the Day is that all of were born were certain talents, that every one of us has something we can do well. The very best way to ensure we are there when our day comes is to get the most out of those talents, to live from the inside out, to live the life were meant to live.

Only when we do that will we be there when the day we’ve waited for arrives.

The Thought for the Day runs occasionally. Quotes are from Gaylon’s private stock and all commentary is original.

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The Diary of a Nobody 1/3/17 – Drivel From Sparrow!

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Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Tuesday, January 3
Found myself in court today…Or, more accurately, The Wife found herself in the docket today, with her beloved husband there as Defense Counsel.

A few weeks ago The Wife – in what was hardly one of 2016’s biggest upsets – was pulled over for speeding…The trooper was going to let her off with a warning, however, she did not have the required insurance documentation with her…He got snitty and cited her for that and the court date was this morning.

Oh boy, The Wife was in ill-humor, not taking her role in the cog of justice well at all…She was “going before the judge”, something she had done since her first marriage ended years ago and she was not looking forward to it…I tried to tell her that with the paperwork showing she was, in fact, insured at the time she was pulled over the entire matter would be dismissed, but she wasn’t hearing that at all.

Had it not been for me she might well have ended up in jail…The Wife, being basically decent, wanted to plead Guilty because, as she kept pointing out she was guilty…Well, that, of course, is simply nonsense…You do not plead Guilty in these situations…There was no explaining this to her, though.

Court was scheduled for 8:30am and there were lots of people there…It’s a small town so it should not be too surprising that I knew a couple of them, one a kid who used to work the front desk for me at the resort and another girl who works at local bank…The judge was late, too…At 8:32 The Wife asked me nervously where the judge was and I told her he was tightening the nooses which actually made her laff which it should have because it was a funny line, maybe even an early Line of the Year candidate, tho there’s still a lot of year left to go.

Anyway, it took a awhile to get to us…First His Honor had to sort thru those who wanted to chat with the DA before facing the rest of their day…Then he picked losers at random to meet their fate…The first couple-three were minors cited for possessing booze…All pleaded guilty and were sentenced to some sort of class and His Honor suspended half the $100 fine, tho there were still enough costs and fees and charges and whatnot to make being a minor in possession a fairly expensive proposition.

After about 20 minutes His Honor pointed at The Wife, who immediately stood up…I smiled and covered my eyes with a hand…The Wife can get chatty when her emotions get away from her and it was entirely possible she would plead Guilty and then start in talking about her kids…As it was, we got off easy…The whole judicial system got off easy…The judge motioned for us to approach the bench, then held his hand out to receive the paperwork.

Hopefully this won’t be too difficult…

It wasn’t…The Wife handed him what she had – her copy of the citation plus the insurance document – and he inspected them pretty closely and then declared the State was dismissing the charge and, since they were dismissed, there were none of those pesky associated costs the other scofflaws were obliged to fork over.

After that we went to the gym where I pumped some iron and The Wife did some cardio and afterwards we both soaked in the hot springs…Then we did some grocery shopping and headed home.

My workout was good…I was on the really good pre-workout supplement of course and even tho I missed last week’s workouts because of the emergency family reunion and being sickies, I had very good strength…I just did the short workout, tho…Tomorrow I’ll be back for a max workout.

There was a ton of snow to shovel out of the way simply to get out of the driveway…As usual, our goddamned small town snow plowers built up an all but impenetrable fortress when the plowed past our driveway this morning…Good gravy it had to be two feet high…The good news was Her Majesty had the snow blower out and was getting the rest of the driveway when we drove up…She does a good job, too…Sharp edges and 90 degree angles on the corners so if the Commandant of the Marine Corps ever comes by to inspect our driveway, we’re sure to pass.

The Diary of a Nobody is a novel. All elements are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Anything else is a coincidence.

It was inspired by the 19th-century British novel of the same name.

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The Diary of a Nobody 1/2/17 – Drivel From Sparrow!

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Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Monday, January 2
The saddest words: Aisle 5 is closed!!!

One minute the credit card machine was accepting transactions and the next it wasn’t…I wasn’t on there at the time – I don’t know why I wasn’t on there at the time, I often am – but the entire aisle was actually out of commission for an hour or so…They must have a tech stashed away in a locker someplace because there was someone working on it pretty quickly, and it probably could’ve been worse.

In fact, I wasn’t on Aisle 5 all day…I am not making that up…I started on three and also got some time on four and the common denominator there was both were desperate for change…Three needed ones and fives and quarters while four needed all possible denominations of coinage produced by the US Treasury…There were zero quarters, a few dimes, two nickels and some pennies.

Turns out there weren’t any quarters anywhere in the store, except our customer’s pockets of course…So I had loads of dimes and were giving lots of those out…When the whole store is out of quarters, the bank is probably out and if the bank is out it’s probably the evil bastards at the Doily Delivery Company (DDC) aren’t doing their goddamned jobs.

DDC service went straight in the crapper the day after I left…I used to ask whenever I’d be at the bank or in a store we serviced, but now I don’t but I don’t have to…People tell me…

Spent some time at self-checkout, too…My hatred of self-checkout is as well-known as it is deep and everlasting…One, I have some zero clue what is going…I had 30 seconds of training a couple of months ago and it’s all forgotten…Only 95 percent of customers needed help this time – as opposed to the 99.99993 percent the other time I was on self-checkout – so it wasn’t too bad, and all I really did was scan my badge and pressed whatever button seemed most likely to solve the problem.

I was prepared to die at self-checkout, but right about the time I was about to bang my head against the freezer across the way Harmony came and relieved me for my break.

Look, if you’re in the retailer wearing the uniform of a team that is playing in the Rose Bowl while the game is going on and you are carrying a list and being led around by your wife you are not master of your own castle!!…I’m sorry…If this is only your girlfriend, flee, it aint gonna get any better…If you’re married, sack up and establish a boundary or two, like when your team is playing in the Rose Bowl you’re either at the game in person or watching it on tee vee.

Me, I’m master of my own castle…Don’t doubt that…I don’t know about you.

Like I do most shifts, I got to use the really funny line about scanning babies because they’re 33 percent off this week…This young couple had three kids, actually, including an infant and the line got laffs from both mommy and daddy.

This joke never gets old…I don’t think…You gotta trust your instincts, tho…You can’t just throw it out there willy-nilly whenever some chick with a kid strapped to her comes thru…You gotta know your audience, and there have been times I haven’t actually used The Line when a family with an infant has come thru.

At the resort, the big news was Celia washed my coffee cup!!!…I am not making that up!!!…I usually keep it on top of the frig in the break room specifically to keep people from washing it, but I must’ve left it on the counter because Celia is about three feet tall and probably wouldn’t bother to get a cup that’s on top of the frig…She actually came by to apologize because Ismael told her I was angry…I laffed it off, telling her I applauded her commitment to Beverage Container Cleanliness, but made a mental note to keep it the hell out of her reach from now on.

The Diary of a Nobody is a novel. All elements are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Anything else is a coincidence.

It was inspired by the 19th-century British novel of the same name.

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The Diary of a Nobody 1/1/17 Drivel From Sparrow!

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Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Sunday, January 1
We are not particularly shorthanded, but for some reason I am by myself more often than not for the first couple of hours on Saturday and Sunday mornings…Nothing too overwhelming happens, but boy, no one is receiving the service either they are expecting to receive or I am looking to deliver…We weren’t swamped this morning, but it was steady enough to ensure the phone wasn’t always getting answered and the coffee service was not always fresh or stocked and that guests sometimes had to wait a few minutes merely to get a couple of coffee filters…I talked to the new manager Julie about when she came in in the afternoon, too…I don’t mind the work, but if phones aren’t getting answered you need more people because on of the first rules of anything is answer the phone because you never when someone needing a paramedic is on the other end.

The carnage at the resort wasn’t too bad…I mean, all buildings were still standing and no one got so excited over the impending new year that they cut any tree down and all cars were still upright…But one of the hot tubs was such a mess it stayed closed all day and the units were a complete disaster…When I left at 3:30 they still had 20 or so units to assign, which is a lot.

I started getting sickies again after lunch…Throat and nose crap…I don’t do sick, altho I did puke on the side of the road last week, of course, so I called off at the retailer, which is a hell of a lot easier than trying to get an EO, you merely call in 800 number, enter your ID and birth date, hit a couple of buttons and write down your confirmation number.

Got some kudos from a guest today after finding a room that was clean for them when their assigned room was not yet ready…Tho I made it look easy, t was a pain in the neck, actually…The only other room in their category that was clean had guest coming in for one night, followed by another for two nights and yet another for four more…They were here for a week, so I unassigned the folks from the other room and then assigned the people who were at the desk to the new room…The unassigned rooms had to be reassigned, so I did that, too…Because I’m old and can’t remember squat anymore it was best to do all those actions right then rather than remember to do them later.

The Diary of a Nobody is a novel. All elements are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Anything else is a coincidence.

It was inspired by the 19th-century British novel of the same name.

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The Diary of a Nobody 12/31/16 – Drivel From Sparrow!

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Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Saturday, December 31
It was real slow at the retailer today…Not Dead Slow, but slower than when we normally sit around wondering “wow, it’s pretty slow today”…It was slow enough that I went up to Maria at the service desk and advised her if she wanted to save the company a few bucks I’d take an early out.

Crap, you’d’ve thought I’d requested admission to the College of Cardinals…First Maria had to consult her hand-held device for guidance, probably to ensure the whole customer service paradigm of the entire Tri-County Area wasn’t affected…Then she passed it off on my neighbor Ricky, who manages some department or another, telling me to go find him…I did, and Ricky, who lives right down the street and at whose house we once watched the Super Bowl, grabbed the bull by the horns and immediately started hemming and hawing…He said, well, yeah, he could make the decision on whether or not the suddenly all-important Sparrow knocks off early, but Zach, the Assistant Manager on Duty, would really decide…He added it would “cost” me, too, in attendance points, because leaving early apparently is treated just slightly less seriously than theft.

Crap, it was literally easier to get nominated to run for the United States Senate a couple of years ago…Recall I didn’t even show up to the convention…I merely stayed home and Nick ran my name up flagpole and everybody saluted.

I patted Ricky on the arm and told him to forget it, it wasn’t worth it, I’ll stick out the entire four-hour shift…He seemed relieved.

It was so slow there weren’t even any memorable purchases…There was this mom and her son and I got the impression she was buying for his dorm room frig because nothing was too expensive or difficult to prepare, but the college here doesn’t start up again for a couple of weeks, so maybe they’re short on dough.

The day job was busy, but we had four – four! – people there so it went pretty smooth…I was there for the first three hours by myself, but Leah, Thania and the new manager Julie all came in around ten and there was enough to keep us busy, especially Thania who has the special duty of inventorying the gift shop every month…This means counting not only the crap still in the gift shop but in the Bldg 5 storage room, too…I helped by counting the Croakies and the Chap Stick and entering everything into the point of sale system.

The Diary of a Nobody is a novel. All elements are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Anything else is a coincidence.

It was inspired by the 19th-century British novel of the same name.

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The Thought for the Day – Frank Sinatra

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 Talent must not be wasted. Those who have it…must share it.  – Frank Sinatra, letter to Los Angeles Times, September 1990


Frank Sinatra needs no introduction. Today’s Thought comes from a Letter to the Editor he wrote to the Times after their Calendar section did a cover story on how recently-deceased George Michael, then a 27-yard-old pop star, was doing all he can to avoid the “…tragedy of fame“. The letter is pure Sinatra, and, among other things, takes Michael to task for wanting “to quit doing what tons of gifted youngsters would shoot grandma for“.

One of the earliest lessons I remember learning is that all of us can do something well. All we have to do is look inside us to find out what that is. You are reading this because writing is my talent and I am determined not to waste it. I write so you will remember it the rest of your life because, otherwise, what’s the point?

Talent must not be wasted.

What’s your talent and where will your talent take you? Will it allow you to raise happy, well-adjusted family? Will it take you a successful professional career? Will it lead to a satisfying avocation? Will your talent, combined with the requisite amount of work and luck – both good and bad – allow you to live down the ages like Frank Sinatra?

It’s of no particular consequence. There are billions of people on this planet and where your talent leads you is sometimes out of your hands because life is nothing more than a collection of billions of random experiences. But if you utilize the gifts you were born with, fortune will take you exactly where you are meant to go. All you have to do is let it.

Those who have it…must share it

We have obligation to ourselves and eveyrone else to get the most out of the talents we were issued. Only when we get the full measure out of our talents, only when we are making our time serve us instead of merely serving time on this planet, will we be of any use to ourselves or our fellow beings.

The Thought for the Day runs occasionally. Quotes are from Gaylon’s private stock and all commentary is original.

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The Diary of a Nobody 12/30/16 – Drivel From Sparrow!

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Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Friday, December 31
The Wife and I met ten years ago today!!!

She can write her own diary if she wants her version out there…She traditionally lies about how we met, usually implying that I was “hard-up” for a date at the time which I wasn’t, don’t even start,  I was going out with babes left and right…Doubt that at your peril…To repeat: I was NOT hard-up.

We were both working at a large hotel/casino on the Sin City Strip and we met completely by accident when some oaf dropped a table on her leg…I was a security supervisor at the time  – she worked in banquets – and I was dispatched to perform and eye test that involved a flashlight and following my index finger to see if there was probable cause to send her in for a drug test.

(The joke, of course, is there was, but I hid the evidence in exchange for a date).

Anyway, she was all over me from the start…Don’t let anyone tell you differently…No siree…All over me!!!…As it was, I happened to have some open slots in my social calendar and was able to squeeze her in for a couple of dates.

Our meeting was pure luck because our paths did not normally cross…I asked her out, she had no choice but to say yes, and the rest is Cupid history.

Boy, the cat was really laying it on today when I got home from work…We usually give her her daily canned yummy ration when it gets dark and it’s winter, of course, so it’s getting darker earlier and she was on me as soon as I walked in the door.

She was on the kitchen table when I walked in the door and followed me to my desk while I cleared out my pockets and, since her food bowls are kept nearby, began eating from last night’s yummy plate, glancing up at me to make sure I saw her dining on day-old cat food…Her look implied I was making her eat a felt tip pen…I gave her yummies at the usual time, tho.

Work was busy, but we had two desk clerks, Gabriel and Leah, so I was able to do supervisor stuff all day…I assigned rooms for tomorrow, we are completely booked with a couple of rooms out of order, but when I left there were only two unassigned, which isn’t too bad…Alice the GM said she will take care of those tomorrow.

I am taking partial credit for this, since I’ve been assigning rooms for a couple of months…Two is manageable…Last year there were times when we had 13 unassigned, which was a living hell.

The Diary of a Nobody is a novel. All elements are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Anything else is a coincidence.

It was inspired by the 19th-century British novel of the same name.

 

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The Diary of a Nobody 12/29/16 Drivel From Sparrow!

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Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Thursday, December 29
Felt better today, but we had to put a new battery in my car.

Here’s what happened: The Wife, whom you will recall drove home Tuesday night after I ralphed on the side of the road, fiddled with the interior lights in the car and they stayed on all night and all day Wednesday because the car wasn’t used…The batter was dead this morning…It wouldn’t accept a jump, either, so we said screw it and bought a new battery…By chance a couple of the neighbor boys – strapping young lads who were probably waiting for Her Majesty to favor them with a curt nod from her window – were outside and they installed it for us…Regular readers of this crap know had had I been obliged to do it myself I would probably still be at it.

Work is getting busy…With it come guest who seem to have air about them that says they are accustomed to being accommodated.

We have a shuttle that takes guests to the mountain…Usually we have two shuttles going, but we only have two drivers right now and they can’t work seven days a week, so only Earl was working today…The lack of two shuttles had one guest annoyed…He was talking to Gabriel about it and Gabriel wasn’t able to produce anything he wanted to hear and one of my duties is to look out for my desk clerks in this situation, so I waddle out.

The man’s point seemed to be there was a second shuttle parked right out front so why wasn’t it in service???…I told the guy, rather than slapping him, that we only had one driver working and only two on staff, it being tuff to find employees right now…This really didn’t please him, but you can’t really argue with a reasonable point made by a nice guy, unless you’re a dolt, of course…This guy wasn’t and eventually left the lobby still breathing.

Then I had the pleasure of talking to Mr Patrick…Mr Patrick and I have chatted several times over the year-plus I’ve been at the resort…He is always a guest in Bldg 1, which we manage for another company and Bldg 1 was built in the Harding Administration and doesn’t have an elevator…Mr Patrick has bad knees and needs a first floor unit…Last year I put him in another building, which I got reamed for because I was not supposed to do that.

Anyway, Mr Patrick has this folksy, good-old-boy quality that gives the impression he usually gets what he wants, mainly due to his incessant whining…When we talked a couple weeks I told him the company had put him a third floor unit…He said that wouldn’t do, he required something on the first floor…I told him truthfully that I had no control over the room he was assigned and was powerless to move him and gave him a contact name and number.

Well, he called back today to thank me!!!…I thought he was going to nag me, but I checked and they moved him to a first-floor room…He seemed to think this was my doing and I said it wasn’t but I was glad everything worked out.

I’m feeling good again…Had some ginger tea and chicken soup at work and when that stayed down tried some leftover prime rib for dinner…Some good rest tonight and I should be good tomorrow.

The Diary of a Nobody is a novel. All elements are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Anything else is a coincidence.

It was inspired by the 19th-century British novel of the same name.

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The Bottom Ten/NFL Week 17

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 The Bottom Ten/NFL Week 16
By Gaylon Kent

America’s Funniest Guy

Oh, the humanity.

Never in their long experience in watching lousy football have Bottom Ten pollsters seen the havoc of this past weekend when all three (3) medal stand teams won.

This leaves the race for the Dan Henning Trophy – symbolic of NFL Bottom Ten supremacy – wide open. So open, in fact, that staffers are scrambling to find whatever Bottom Ten tie breaking procedures might be laying around the office.

Not only will a loss be key for those seeing Bottom Ten glory, but Bottom Ten pollsters will be looking at other factors, too, such as margin of loss, penalties and a total lack of a rushing game.

This week’s utter fiasco, as the nags limp for the finish line:

1. Chicago Bears (3-12; lost to Washington 41-21) – Sometimes B-10 title goes to team that wants it more, as Bears highest ranked team that could be bothered to lose this week…Still, though, B-10 title not there for the taking, as B-10 pollsters must sort all damage from final week, as 49ers have loss in hand to Midgets of Midway. …Next Loss: at Minnesota

2. Los Angeles Rams (4-11; lost to San Francisco 22-21) – Heartland or Hollywood, Rams still aren’t any good, making big pitch for B-10 medal stand finish by getting outscored 15-0 in final 5:06…Rams hoping to B-10 dynasty in place by time new stadium opens, Chargers move in, in 2019…Next Loss: Arizona Cardinals

3. San Diego Chargers (5-10; lost to Cleveland 20-17) – Chargers make great impression on whichever town ends up with them in 2017, snapping Cleveland’s 17-game losing streak while extending their own skid to an attention-grabbing four (4) games…Both San Diego and Los Angeles so afraid of having team end up there offer from Winslow, Arizona to use local high school leading favorite to land team…Next Loss: Kansas City

4. Cleveland Browns (1-14; defeated San Diego 20-17) – All the losing dies in winning for Browns, who see chance 0-16 glory disappear with first 2016 victory…Browns second NFL team to start season 1-14 after losing first 14 straight…Next Loss: at Pittsburgh

5. San Francisco 49ers (2-13; defeated Los Angeles 22-21) – With the B-10 top spot there for the losing, Niners blink with type of morale-depleting, come-from-ahead road win that tends to destroy B-10 title hopes…Needs very strong loss this week to even think about B-10 medal stand…Next Loss: Seattle

6. Jacksonville Jaguars (3-12; defeated Tennessee 38-17) – With B-10 medal stand glory awaiting their usual loss, Jaguars owner Genghis Kahn takes entire coaching staff to team headquarters for postgame waterboarding session, following latest untimely win…Next Loss: at Indianapolis

7. NFC West (21-37) – With Rams late surge and San Francisco’s two (2) wins, noted division easy choice for weekly Pete Rozelle Award, issued to NFL’s worst division…Nothing guaranteed though, as there is a full slate of AFC South action this week for B-10 pollsters to sort through before annual Pete Rozelle Award issued next wee.

8. Cincinnati Bengals (5-9-1; lost to Houston 12-10) – After 14 years, rumors about head coach Marvin Lewis status now inevitable, as Lewis has yet to produce a B-10 title, despite having the lousy owner and sub-standard facilities most coaches would kill for.…Next Loss: Baltimore

9. New York Jets (4-11; lost to New England 41-3) – Medal stand berth still not out of the question, as Jets put up “notice me” 41-3 loss to league’s best team…Jets peaking at the right time, having lost six (6) of last seven (7)…Next Loss: Buffalo

10. Donald TrumpPresident-elect, a staple in the ten spot since the election, gets a pass this week, as B-10 pollsters still distraught over entire medal stand winning this past weekend

This Week’s Clash of the Titans: Chicago at Minnesota
This Is Don Criqui Reporting: Jacksonville at Indianapolis

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The Diary of a Nobody 12/28/16 – Drivel From Sparrow!

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Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Wednesday, December 28
The Wife took care of me today.

I slept reasonably well…The stomach settled down but it still felt like I’d been hit by a train…I woke up every couple of hours overnight and tried some water, first a couple of drops than a sip or two and I will able to hold that down, so I upped the dose to half a glass, which was key because I was very thirsty.

About 10am I requested a hot bath…I got more than that…The Wife made me an Epsom salts bath, then drained the tub and made me a bath with Tibetan salt…Included was being wrapped in towels and hot water poured over me…Then she put on my jammies for me and put me to bed, but not before I got a coconut oil rub on my thyroid…This entry would be longer, except I went to bed at 3 in the afternoon.

That, boys and girls, is how you take care of your husband…Ladies, please do not marry a man you are not prepared to do these things for and, similarly, do not marry a man who will not take care of you like this, altho you will probably have to provide instruction…It is not reasonable to expect most men to have a working knowledge of hot, salted baths.

The Diary of a Nobody is a novel. All elements are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Anything else is a coincidence.

 

It was inspired by the 19th-century British novel of the same name.

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