Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Incandescent in Clearwater

Here in sunny FL, it has been 85F these past several weeks - unseasonably lovely, even for Paradise.  Would someone please explain why my bride of 43 years has been swaddling herself in flannels and sweatshirts?  At night, our A/C is tuned to "swelter," yet Sweet Judy, blithely indifferent, cranks her electric blanket to "fry" and, for good measure, piles on another blanket in case global cooling sets in overnight.  Outvoted on all counts, I avoid fatal scalding only by kicking everything onto her side and fluffing the remaining sheet that covers me.

In related news, a mysterious puddle of glass appeared last week in the middle of glorious Clearwater Beach, which is currently in the throes of annual Spring Break.  The common thread here?  Well, the beach throbs to the beat of throngs of thonged and nubile coeds.  It's hot out there, folks.  If you take a wall of flesh, douse it liberally in Wesson Oil (SPF -50), inject it with alcohol, and lay it out in the Florida sun for a few hours, you know what is bound to happen. 

Yes, Human Spontaneous Combustion.  How else to explain that glass puddle in the middle of several hundred hectares of beach sand?

Really, Human Spontaneous Combustion.  Stay with me here.  There's this Michael Faherty guy who detonated recently in Ireland, leaving nothing but a blackened husk.  And get this: there was no apparent source of ignition nearby other than an empty Guinness bottle.  Experts all agree: HSC is the only reasonable explanation.  You could Google it in a jiffy.

So, in the light of Human Spontaneous Combustion as a true scientific phenomenon, let's peek back in on my bedroom.  Sort of.  I mean, the connection should be obvious: Judy's maiden name is ...  Flaherty.  Get it?  Faherty-Flaherty?  Pretty obvious, don't you think?  With her raging internal furnace, her risk of Human Spontaneous Combustion must be astronomical. 

I'm going to start sleeping in the spare room.  With a fire extinguisher.


Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Triple Witchin'

I know - I've been hard to find lately.  No really, there have been Silver Alerts with my license plate on them.  And all those milk cartons.  But no - I'm still here.  I've been caught in traffic. 

Now, I know what you're thinking:  this guy gets all Chicken Little when he starts whining about the traffic in the Sunshine State.  Nothing can be all that bad.

Unbelievers.  Heathens, all of you.  Birthers, even.

It is the triple witching hour in Pinellas County.  The place is hip-deep in snowbirds.  It's Spring Break, so we are inundated with swirling hordes of practically-naked coeds.  (Okay, okay:  that one's not so bad.)  And now the Florida DOT has touched off Armageddon smack in front of my trailer park manufactured home community. 

I want you to study carefully the picture that follows.  It was shot a couple weeks back.  You'll see the intersection of Ulmerton Road and 101st Street North.  You have to squint a little.  This - just out of the picture frame to the left - is where I reside in blissful retirement. I negotiate this intersection 2, 4, sometimes 6 times a day because it lies between me and the nearest beer store.  Staying home, naturally, is not an option.

In the photo, you will notice a tiny green sign located just aft of the white van there on the right.  See it there?  I thought not, but trust me:  it's there.  See it now?


Anyway, the sign bears the crushing news:
      "Construction Scheduled for Completion Fall 2015"

Twenty.  Fifteen. 

And you Northerners -- all you have to crab about is global warming and a few potholes?  Hah!

For the foreseeable future, I'll be holed up with a six-pack of Bud Light and fending off the swirling nubiles.  See you in the Fall of 2015.  In the meantime, watch for me on a milk carton coming to a supermarket near you.