Saturday afternoon, I received a friendly reminder of my days spent on the Road to Nowhere.
There, nestled between advertising circulars and an overdue insurance bill, was my very own copy of the White Birch Bugle , the monthly newsletter put out by the Community Center Psychic that Sue and I had been raising money for, with our modest little production of Love Letters .
"Looks like you're going to be on their mailing list forever," said Corb.
"Nothing like a little bit of the one and only Henniker, each and every month. Does it say anything about the show?" I glanced at the plain white newsletter, set in Times New Roman font. Plain and simple, to the end.
"Let's see," said Corb, flipping through the pages. "A recipe for golden smashed potatoes...an 11-year-old grandson joke...oh, look! Here's something interesting. 'It is with saddest heart that I must pass on the following news. The Pillsbury Doughboy died yesterday of a yeast infection, and trauma complication from repeated pokes to the belly...'"
I snorted. "Yeah, yeah, and Betty Crocker and the Hostess Twinkies came to pay their respects. I read that email, too...years ago. Now, come on. After that article, we HAVE to be in there, somehwere..."
Corb continued to flip through. "You're on page nine. 'If you didn't get to see it, you missed a great performance and a good play...I want to especially say thank you to Sue and Ted for the great performances. You share a love of performing and a friendship that showed in a spectacular production."
I allowed myself a grin. "Well, that was nice of Pat to write. She did write it, right?"
Corb turned back to the front page. "Looks like she wrote most everything in here. Oh, and look what else she wrote! 'I am looking to plan trips to Plymouth Plantation, a cruise on Boston Harbor, and a lighthouse tour.'" Corb folded up the newsletter and placed it on the dashboard. "A lighthouse tour...hmmm...I wonder who came up with that idea..."
Ah, God bless you, Gunther. May your painting supplies never run low.
The next day, Annie took her next big step, and invited Corb and I over for our first official meal at her new apartment.
Josie and Andrew had been invited over for dinner Friday evening, so of course, I kidded Annie that her mom was getting preferential treatment. However, to be honest, I favored a breakfast setting. It's what Annie and I do, after all. Sunday breakfasts are sort of our special time, without the other kids, every week.
I tell you, she cooks a mean slice of bacon. Nice and crisp, just the way I like it. I dislike drippy, limp bacon. I like mine to have a snap to it, so that it crunches in your mouth. I get that from my mother, who likes her bacon cooked for so long that it's essentially charred remains. I'm not quite that bad...but close.
Sitting at the kitchen table, waiting for breakfast, I was reminded of a Sunday morning, long ago, when Annie cooked me her first meal. She set out to surprise Josie and me with breakfast in bed.
She crept over to our bed in her nightgown, with paper plates in her hands. We sat up, trying to look so pleased with the gifts that she set before us. Runny eggs that had been half cooked and bread, lightly toasted, smeared in butter.
But we ate it, every bite. And praised her profusely, too. She's grown up to be a much better cook than that first attempt, let me tell you.
In other news, I notice that a recent Yahoo news story reported on Australian doctors describing three individuals who suffered epileptic seizures induced by toothbrushing. The headline was "Can Tooth Brushing Cause Seizures?"
The story reminded me of my friend The Maestro, whom, on occasion, can induce epileptic seizures because of his lack of toothbrushing. One time, during a rehearsal of Kiss Me, Kate, things got so bad that even he noticed it.
"Oh god," he said, looking around nervously. "Do I have politician's breath?"
"What's that?" I asked.
"The breath of a thousand assholes," he replied.
I tell you, even covered with gummy plaque, the guy's still got it.
Almost done with one more chapter of "Late Night Show." Only two more to go!