It’s time again for dangling chads; random thoughts I’ve stored in the midst of mental declines. 

A guy’s gotta clear the mechanism, because as I’ve said before, too many floaters can cause a blockage. For a writer, a mental block is far worse than a bowel blockage, which is no picnic either.

Maybe insignificant to some, I need to know what happened to the wife’s part in that formerly-entertaining, Liberty Mutual commercial? You know the one – the husband, coincidentally named Doug, mans the grill while good-naturedly relating to his “Limu Emu” guests,“So I says to him, you ought to customize your car insurance so you only pay for what you need.”

He laughs at his own apparent punchline, but the awkwardly smiling wife pipes up meekly: “Oh, um, Doug, could we talk about something other than work? It’s the weekend..” Obviously more hurt than angry, Doug mutters haltingly while re-inserting his toothpick, “Yeah … yeah.” The squeaking emus are noticeably uncomfortable as Doug dejectedly asks, “Hot dog, or … chicken?”

I really enjoyed that commercial; a slice-of-life, tense husband/wife moment, but one day out of the blue, the wife says nothing. She was mysteriously, literally muted. What, is it some kind of Me-too, cancel-culture thing because the wife comes off as slightly controlling? Sure, ruin a perfectly good commercial on some politically-correct technicality. Well, I will never buy car insurance from Liberty Mutual, you can rest assured of that!

You may recall, a few weeks ago I advised my potential Lance Romance, great-nephew Noah on pickup lines that should offer valuable advantage in his quest for feminine pulchritude. Space prevented me from including other time-tested, irresistibly-smooth lines and techniques. For instance, a good ice-breaker might be, “Would it be okay if I smell your hair?” Girls are all about their hair, and this could be received as a huge compliment if she’s recently switched shampoos.

One approach I failed to mention though is what I like to call the “broken wing rescue.” Decades ago at the dearly-remembered-by-Boomers, Bronze Boot, I mustered the nerve to walk up to a table of sultry gals to ask the sultriest among them to dance. She shook her head in a rudely-dismissive manner, and with no aforethought, I said with a scowl, “Okay, I get it; I know I’m ugly. I won’t bother you again.”

I skulked away and she darn near broke Jessie Owen’s speed record catching up to me with assurance, “No, you’re not ugly at all; I think you’re really cute. I just didn’t feel like dancing.” Just like that, we’re out there cutting a rug for so many songs, I’m thinking, “I’ve had enough, but how do I tell her without hurting her feelings?” Typically, I didn’t seal the deal, but learned how a self-loathing walkaway can soften the most rigid of hearts. (A fake limp while retreating couldn’t hurt either).

And one last PSA: When entering the four-way stop at 19th and East Sheridan heading east, tread lightly. It’s one of those ill-defined, “damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don’t,” traps that can be twisted into “improper lane change” rickety-split. Probable cause can hatch from the most improbable of causes.

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