The Conspiracy

telemarketerI don’t know why, but the telemarketers have been ringing my phone off the hook lately. Is there a telemarketer season that I don’t know about? I am on every “Do Not Call” list I can find, state and federal. Still, they call. I just found out that when you pick up the phone and no one is there, it is a robo call. They are on another call and can’t pick up on yours. I almost wish I did not have a phone.

I will NEVER be courteous to a telemarketer again! This time I’ve had it! Really had it! I received my credit card bill and as I glanced over it, I noticed a couple of strange charges. They were small, $7.80. But, what in the world were they? So, I called the 800 number and found out it was an insurance company.

“How’s the weather in Nashville? Getting ready for Fanfare in July?” They were my best friends, you’d think. But I didn’t call to pass the time of day.

“There are some charges on my credit card bill here. Who are you and why are these charges on my bill – two in one billing cycle?”

“Oh, that’s the accident policy you took out. Remember? We called you on the phone and you said it was okay to send it to look at.”

I bristled! No, I didn’t remember, and I did not have any intention of taking out a policy with them. I have insurance and if I didn’t I would not be buying it off the phone from a telemarketer!

“Cancel it and take it off my bill.”

“You don’t want it?”

“Right!”

We went back and forth for a while, and I was not in the mood to be pleasant. Finally it came down to this: If I wanted to cancel the policy, they would have to send me papers which I would have to sign and return before they could cancel the policy. Well, I didn’t have to sign anything to buy it, just inadvertently agree to look it over, into their hidden microphone, apparently, and that was considered consent.

Never again! Warning to all telemarketers: WATCH OUT! I’m EVIL, I’m MEAN! I’m waiting for you! I will slam down my receiver in your ear in a New York minute. I do not have to be nice to you unscrupulous, double dealing, rip off artists and I do not ever intend to listen to you long enough to be taken to the cleaners again!

Well, after I cooled down enough to think, I called VISA and asked them what was going on, and how these people got my phone number and credit card number.

“Oh, they don’t have your number, we authorized them to call and we put it on your account!”

AH, HA! The credit card company is in on this!

“In that case, I want to make a complaint about you being involved in such unscrupulous dealings!”

Now, unlike stupid insurance companies that won’t remove erroneous charges, VISA has wised up. It’s not worth losing a high interest, paying customer for $7.80. So, they quickly agreed to remove the charges, both of them and one extra that I will probably get before the papers are processed. They apologized over and over and made excuses and even volunteered to take me off their solicitation list. List? LIST??? They have a list???

Everybody immediately call your VISA and ask to be taken off their telephone solicitation list! Do it NOW before you forget!!!

The insurance company can still be turned in to whoever regulates them. They must think I’m an idiot not to know insurance is one of the most highly regulated products there is – and this is exactly why! Shysters!!!

All I have to do is figure out who to write the complaint to. The Insurance Commission? What is the insurance equivalent of the Federal Trade Commission? Boy, companies really hate it when they get turned in to the FTC. I’ll find out! After all, the Internet is good for a few things besides just surfing.

If you will excuse me now, I think the phone is ringing. Gee… I sure hope it is not a telemarketer. I really hate to hang up on them and hurt their feelings. Maybe I’ll just listen for a few minutes… What can that hurt?

Copyright 2001 Sheila Moss
Edited
Posted in Humor | 4 Comments

Dog for Sale

sheltieI had one dog too many at my house. I love dogs, but when my daughter and her two pets came to live with me, we discovered that three dogs and a cat were too many animals. We had dogs everywhere. Since one of the dogs, Cody, immediately endeared himself to us by strategically placing his scent on the living room rug, there was little doubt which animal had to be sacrificed. And so, we were looking for new home for Cody.

“Take a picture and post an ad,” someone told us. “Pictures help.” Cody was a wonderful dog – a Sheltie. Sheltie is the nickname of the breed correctly called Shetland Sheepdogs. They are descended from sheep herding dogs. Quick and agile by nature, they are among the most intelligent of all dog species. Cody was a beauty, looking like a miniature version of Lassie.

We coaxed Cody to smile (I told you he was intelligent.) and took a picture. Apparently Cody was not smart enough to know why we were taking the picture, however. We placed it strategically in all the better public places where people who love dogs might go, i.e. veterinarian’s bulletin boards and pet stores. Trouble was, people who visit veterinarians and pet stores apparently have pets already. We received only one call from all our ads and it was on the strange side.

The voice on my answering machine said: “I want to know about the dog’s personality.”

Personality? Dogs have a personality? “Well, he smiles a lot, especially when asleep. Does that count? He is very friendly, primarily when you are bringing his food dish. He can actually spring four feet straight up into the air for food.”

I wondered why he didn’t jump over the kennel fence, but he just jumped straight up as if on a trampoline. He hadn’t quite figured out how to level it out. I was sure it was only a matter of time. He probably stayed up nights drawing up blueprints and plotting his eventual escape.

“Also, what is the dog’s lifestyle?” said the voice on the recording.

Lifestyle? Dogs have a lifestyle? “He’s a DOG, for Pete sakes!! He eats, sleeps, goes for a walk, barks, scratches, goes to the bathroom and then he does it all over again.” What sort of lifestyle did she expect a dog to have? I’ve seen that TV show, “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.” I don’t remember seeing any dogs, but I’m sure some dogs must lie around on velvet cushions eating dog biscuits all day. Well, Cody was not a pampered pet. He led the life of a dog. Were they looking for a dog or a date? “This is not a singles ad, lady.”

Let’s see, I thought, maybe I can reword my ad and get better results:

“Make a dog happy. Make me happy. Give a dog a home. He will jump at the chance to be your pet. Lifestyle no problem, he is used to the life of a dog. Disinfectant for your carpet included. Do not feed from fingers if you value fingers. Dog has food anxiety. One pet home preferred. Sheepdogs have herding instinct and other pets may object to being nipped on legs, resulting in dogfights in the kitchen. Trips to the emergency vet are not included. All vaccinations current. Taxes and delivery extra.”

“How much does the dog cost?” Don’t make me laugh. We would almost pay someone to take this dog – notice I said “almost.” Try before you buy? Not a chance. What did you think this was, a used car? If I ever got rid of that mongrel…

Oh, wait, “Here Cody! Sit, smile for the nice people. Hold up your pedigree registration papers. That’s a good pooch. Here is your milkbone treat. Watch the fingers…. You can go now. I said, GO!… NO! NO! Not on the rug!”

“Please,” I thought, “Somebody, adopt this FREE dog.” Except for a few teensy vices, he was a great dog. He walked on a leash, sat on command, and only barked at trash men and other dogs (unless provoked). “Just a wee bit of time and attention and he will call you master forever, provide hours of companionship, and bring your slippers only slightly crewed up.”

“What’s not to love?”

Copyright 2001 Sheila Moss
Posted in Creatures, Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Are You Ready for Vacation?

map2.jpgSummer is here! There is still time to plan a vacation and get away from work stress. But how do you know when it’s time for a break? Here’s a simple quiz to help you decide.

Do you have a designated parking spot in the employee parking garage?

Does the security guard know you by your first name?

Has your accumulated sick leave balance maxed out?

Is your computer password, “hurryup!”

Do your eyes light up at the sight of email?

Do you carry more than one a cell phone?

Do you come in early or stay late to get more work done?

Can you use the copy machine, make a phone call, check email, and eat lunch all at the same time?

Is coffee your primary source of nutrition?

Is the carpet worn out under your chair?

Do you go to staff meetings only for a break?

Is voice mail your best friend?

Is your e-calendar too full to hold any more appointments?

Is your “to do” list in your pocket next to your heart?

Did battery in your computer mouse go dead?

Do you smile when the phone rings?

Does your cubical have a sign that says, “Home Sweet Office?”

Have you started to like the taste of employee cafeteria food?

Do you have a change of clothing and an extra toothbrush in your bottom desk drawer “just in case?”

———————

15+YES

It’s hopeless. Prepare your family for your impending heart attack and get your affairs in order.

10-15 YES

Definitely vacation material! Get a tan then join Workaholics Anonymous and try to kick the habit.

5-10 YES

You deserve a break! Take the batteries out of your beeper, figure out the auto response function on your computer and, most of all, apply for vacation leave while there’s still hope.

0-5 YES

Get to work and save that sick leave till you need it. You probably made your vacation plans long ago. Next time send us a post card so we can see what we’re missing!

Copyright 2001 Sheila Moss
Posted in Holidays, Humor, Work Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The Birthday Boy

cakeMy honey has a birthday coming up. So, what’s the big deal? I mean, we all have one every year. Why must we continue to feel compelled to celebrate long after childhood and into adulthood? Well, okay, I guess every one deserves to be special at least once a year.

Problem is, once again I’ve failed to plan ahead. The last minute has come and I have no gift. The age-old problem strikes again. What to get him? Men! They are impossible to buy a gift for. Shirts, ties? He has enough. He doesn’t want more of that stuff. After-shave? He has a five-year supply already. Computer gadgets, records, books? Too late to shop on the net like I did at Christmas. I should have planned ahead.

What does he really NEED? Shouldn’t it be something a person needs? Well, how about a pair of shoes? Dumb gift, but he did show me a hole in his sole and rant about how he had to get some new ones. Yes, SHOES are what he really NEEDS. But how can I pick out shoes? Even if I get the right size and the right style, shoes are one thing that really has to be tried on. A gift certificate? Surely I can be more creative than that.

I know, a token pair of shoes – baby shoes – with a little note that says, “These represent the new shoes you are going to get later,” or something like that. Maybe he can hang them on the rear view mirror in his car. I’ve been working on making him into a redneck anyhow.

No, somehow, I just don’t think that’s going to work. I need to come up with something else. Maybe I can just write an I.O.U. note in a card. I decide to go to the card shop. Wouldn’t you know it? Hallmark has a display case full of miniature shoes. Perfect! Look at the little sneaker! It will make a cute paperweight, and I can put a note in it that indicates it represents the real pair of shoes I will help him pick out later.

I’m pretty pleased with myself. These Hallmark folks think of everything, don’t they? Life is good.

So, I wrapped up the little shoe in the little shoebox with the little I.O.U. note inside. On the Big Day, I put the gift on his computer chair where he would be sure to find it. SURPRISE!

“I didn’t understand your gift,” said my honey. “I thought it was a paperweight.”

Argh, he didn’t like it!

“But, then I saw the note,” he continued.

Whew, saved!!!

So, I successfully procrastinated shopping for a gift one more time. It’s going to catch up with me, though. He’s already talking about going shopping for shoes on Saturday. Saturday? I’m too busy — I’m too tired. Okay, okay, I’m too lazy.

I thought only men put things off. Why must he be the thoughtful, considerate one who always shops ahead for nice gifts while I wait until the eleventh hour? I need to do better next year. I’m turning over a new leaf.

But right now, I’ve got to figure out how to put off this trip to the shopping mall until NEXT Saturday.

Copyright 2001 Sheila Moss
Posted in Holidays, Humor, Shopping | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

The Wrong Turn

Legislative_PlazaIt isn’t every day that a writer has a story land practically right in their lap, but that is exactly what happened to me.

It was a rather nice late August day, not as humid as your average summer day in middle Tennessee. So, I had decided to take a break from the office and spend my lunch hour outside. I walked to Legislative Plaza, a large park-like area with fountains and such, right across the street from the Tennessee State Capitol.

There I was, munching on my granola bar and wondering what I could write my column about this week when I heard a loud crash. A large luxury vehicle made a wrong turn and jumped the curb, stopping on the sidewalk at the top of the wide stairs leading down to the plaza. The car was stuck and could not back up – so the driver just proceeded to drive forward — right down the long flight of stairs and onto the pedestrian plaza.

All the scraping and crunching attracted a lot of attention including that of the Capitol Police. The cops caught up with the car on foot, and the slightly bewildered driver still was not aware of the predicament he was in. Apparently he didn’t know that there was no way off the plaza except via stairs. Another cop joined the police officer and as they began to survey the situation, they broke into gales of laughter.

A crowd gathered and spectators watched and giggled as the story continued to unfold. After all, right in front of the State Capitol is not exactly the most inconspicuous spot in the city.

“How did that car get there?” mused newly arriving viewers.

I began to feel a bit sorry for the dazed, but humiliated, driver. Police radioed for assistance and soon the traffic division arrived. The traffic officer did not find the situation quite as humorous as the other officers. Unmarked security soon joined the other cops, and legislators on their way back from lunch stopped to survey the situation. “Oh, boy,” I thought, “With politicians involved they will never get anything done.” Tourists snapped pictures of the stranded vehicle to take home as souvenirs, and TV crews with mini-cams arrived.

A tow truck was called, but after much cell phoning, hum-hawing and head scratching, the driver was unable to figure out a way to rescue the car. Government office workers in the plaza ate their brown bag lunches and enjoyed the free lunch hour entertainment, wondering what would be next.

Eventually, a larger tow truck came, traffic was stopped, and a flatbed tow truck removed the car. The audience applauded. Officer workers drifted away back to their cubicles and paperwork. The misfortunate driver appeared to be receiving some paperwork of his own — undoubtedly they were throwing the book at the old guy. Legislators inspected the concrete steps for damage and will probably introduce a bill next week to put up vehicle barriers in front of the stairs.

And that’s the story just the way it happened, folks, from your eyewitness humor columnist on the scene with up to the minute coverage of minor auto mishaps and brown bag lunches. Once again we have proven there’s never a shortage of funny news when it comes to the lousy drivers in Tennessee.

Copyright 2001 Sheila Moss
Posted in Automotive, Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Alligator Tale

I have a sore finger. Some people call it my “ouchie.” I really try not to think about how it happened. It is all sort of hazy now. I was outside doing yard work and became tangled up with an apple tree and a pruning saw. Never tangle with a pruning saw – the pruning saw will always win.

I thought I’d best go to the emergency room. There was a lot of blood and it looked pretty bad.

“Ever have stitches before?” the medic asked me.

“STITCHES?” Argh! I don’t know how I’ve managed to reach my age without ever needing stitches. I felt a little dizzy. The doctor came in and proceeded to casually sew me up with a needle and thread, chatting about the weather and her own similar encounter with a hedge trimmer.

I was very brave. You can be proud. I didn’t cry or pass out or anything like that. Keeping my eyes closed and not looking helped a great deal. I told them it didn’t hurt much. Actually, it hurt a whole lot. “Hold it up,” they said, “that helps the pain.” Well, I’ve been holding it up for about a month now. It still hurts.

They put this big metal thing on my finger to protect it. I don’t know what they call them, finger protectors, I guess. I felt a bit like Lurch or another monster of some sort, practically dragging my huge finger on the ground instead of my knuckles.

Needless to say, computers and keyboards became a bit difficult with a huge metal finger. I became pretty good with practice, using one hand and two fingers on the other hand. About the time I became a seven-finger keyboard master, however, I was able to remove the bandage in favor of a band-aid and life became nearly normal.

I had to return to the clinic numerous times for antibiotic shots, rechecks and getting the stitches out. The clinic became like a second home. The receptionist and nurse knew me by my first name and I was almost part of the family.

Once a little kid came up to me in the waiting room and said, “What happened to your finger?” I told him how I cut it doing yard work, and he showed me the cut on his foot. We sympathized with each other and had a nice chat about stitches, and tetanus shots.

Next time a kid asks, though, I’m going to have a better story ready. How about, “I was bitten by an alligator!” Or “A pirate tried to cut my finger off to steal my ring!” Or “I was attacked by a shark while swimming!” or … well, you get the point. Something a bit more adventurous would be more interesting.

No one really wants to hear about an encounter with a pruning saw. How mundane! Mostly people think, “Why don’t you learn to be more careful!” Of course, they don’t know what a nasty disposition my pruning saw has.

Wouldn’t ya know it had to be my ring finger that was injured? Now I’ll have a big ugly scar when I try to look dazzling. Of course, it will be a while before the swelling goes down enough to think about wearing jewelry anyhow.

You don’t have to sympathize about my ouchie if you don’t want to. Just don’t get too smart with me, though, or I might have to hit you with my metal finger. Get your alligator story ready.

Copyright 2001 Sheila Moss
Posted in Health, Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Self Improvement

I was reading a magazine the other day and noticed some suggestions for self-improvement. While these suggestions were good, as far as they went, they just didn’t seem to quite cover all the alternatives for me.

 

Eat light and read something inspirational. Why not read something light, like a Dilbert cartoon, and eat something inspirational like a granola bar?

Greet others in a positive way. Could this just be a polite way of saying “Brush your teeth and use mouthwash?”

Be organized and make a to-do list. If it is worth doing, I somehow feel I should just do it instead of spending my time making lists.

Change your attitude. Coffee helps a lot. In the morning the dog had better not get between the coffeepot and me, or I may growl louder than he does.

Recapture past successes. Does this mean I can potty train my grandchild since I successfully showed kitty the litter box?

Count your blessings. If you can’t think of any good ones, is it okay to count troubles? Or maybe I could just count sheep and go back to sleep?

Get advice from others. If anyone has trouble with this one, my mother-in-law would be glad to help.

Think of something you would like to stop doing. I have a feeling that quitting your job is not an option here.

Be creative. But not while driving in rush hour traffic! There are times to be creative and times to conform.

Play music. Unless you work in the cubicle next to someone in which case you may want to keep your MP3 file to yourself.

Exercise. I suppose watching an aerobic video does not count, regardless of how much it wears me out.

Write down negative thoughts and then tear up the paper. Well, there goes next week’s column!

Visualize yourself the way you want to be. You’ll still be old and fat; you just won’t have to admit it to yourself.

Don’t give up. Yes, if you sit in traffic long enough, eventually you’ll get home – unless you run out of gas first, that is.

Reward yourself for saving money by getting something you really want. But what I really want is to spend the money instead of saving it.

Plan a vacation to have something to look forward to. Looking forward to dinner is good enough for me.

Just as I suspected, it’s totally hopeless. But think of the money I’ve saved by staying just the way I am. Maybe I could use it on something I really need, like more self-improvement magazines,

Copyright 2001 Sheila Moss
Posted in Health, Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Spaghetti Supper

spaghetti

Okay, I think it’s about time that you learn to cook! We will start with something easy and fun – spaghetti! It is impossible to eat a food as silly as spaghetti without a smile. It is something that anyone can fix quickly and also makes a great meal for unexpected company. You only need three ingredients to make spaghetti: noodles, sauce, and ground beef. Some people leave the meat out, but what kind of meal is that?

We will start by cooking the noodles. Use your largest pot so it won’t boil over during cooking. Here is a trick I’ve learned for cooking long spaghetti. First, bring the water to a boil. Then insert the spaghetti noodles and let them soften on one end to wind them around in the pot and avoid breaking them in half. You are on the way to being a gourmet chef already.

Next, unwrap the hamburger. I hope you bought the lean beef or you will end up with a big pan of grease. Crumble the meat into a hot skillet and brown it. Drain off all the extra grease. Oh no, you got the cheap hamburger, didn’t you? Look at all that grease! NO! Don’t drain it in the sink! Too late… Well, maybe it won’t clog the drain.

Okay, now open the jar of spaghetti sauce and add it to the browned meat. Turn the heat on low and let it simmer. Some people make their own spaghetti sauce, but that is definitely too advanced for a beginner. I can’t imagine why anyone would want to spend hours making spaghetti sauce anyhow when we have Ragu.

By now the noodles should be about done. The only way to know for sure is to remove one and test it. It should be tender, but not mushy. They are all stuck together? Haven’t you been stirring them? Well, try to get that blob separated. Next time use a little olive oil in the water and it will help with this problem. At least we used the big pot and they didn’t boil over, well, at least not much. We can clean it up later.

Remove the glob of noodles and place them in a colander to drain. What do you mean, what is a colander? It looks like a bowl with holes in it. You don’t have one? Great! Well, drain the water off the best you can. Maybe the boiling water will help unclog the grease in the drain.

Rinse the noodles in hot water. Why do you have to rinse them when they are already wet? It gets rid of the extra starch. Don’t argue with me! Just rinse the noodles and drain them. You will never learn to cook at this rate!

Okay, we need to make a decision at this point. Do we want to serve the sauce over the spaghetti or do we want to stir them together before serving? I like to stir them together as it gives the noodles a chance to absorb some of the sauce. Also, it will give the noodles a chance to finish cooking since you didn’t let them get quite done.

What is that smell? The spaghetti sauce! I told you to turn it on low! LOW! Don’t you know that tomato sauce burns easily? I don’t know about you, but I’m about feed up with this mess. Cooking class is closed. While I go take the battery out of the smoke alarm, throw that lump of noodles in the garbage disposal and let’s get out of here! Does the Olive Garden take reservations?

Copyright 2001 Sheila Moss

Posted in Food, Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Helpful Hints from a Mother-In-Law

cleaning

E-MAIL

FROM: Mother-In-Law@aol.net

TO: Daughter-In-Law@home.com

SUBJECT: Helpful Hints from a Mother-in-Law

I’ve been meaning to talk to you for some time now about a matter I’m concerned about. I don’t mean to offend you, dear, but your housekeeping is just not up to par. I’ve noticed a number of things, and I just wanted to call them to your attention. My son is simply not used to living like that.

When I was younger, my house was absolutely spotless. Why, I scrubbed my kitchen floor on my hands and knees every day and then waxed it. It was so clean that you could practically eat off the floor! I realize that today’s floor coverings don’t need waxing, but that should make it even easier for you. I know you work all week and don’t have much time, but it really doesn’t really take that long just to mop the floor.

I’ve also noticed unwashed dishes in your sink. As I’ve said, I don’t mean to be critical, dear. I used to wash all my dishes by hand and dry them too. I put clean shelf paper in my cabinets every month. With all the modern conveniences women have these days, I can’t see any reason for having dirty dishes. With dishwashers, automatic washers and dryers and microwaves, women are just getting lazy. My mother used to wash her clothes with a tub and washboard. Thank goodness, I never had to do that, but I did hang out my clothes to dry on a clothesline. And I still managed to keep my dishes washed. Perhaps you just need to try a little harder, dear.

I’m afraid to even look into your bedroom to see if the beds are made. It gives me shivers to think that you probably don’t change the sheets every week. My sheets were always clean and spotless, and I had to iron them too – none of this polyester blend stuff like you have nowadays. I had white chenille bedspreads on every bed and no one ever saw them unmade. I just hope you are least making up my son’s bed every day so the sheets are not crumpled as well as dirty.

Finally, I’d like to mention the dust. Obviously, you are dusting around the dishes on the hutch instead of taking them off and dusting behind things. The tops of your curtain rods are filthy. You really need to get rid of the feather duster as it just stirs up the dust on the furniture. I’ve always polished all my furniture with lemon wax at least once a week. I highly recommend this if you want things to be really clean and shiny.

I won’t go into the need to sanitize the bathroom every day. Surely we do not need to discuss something this delicate. I will mention, however, that I could not help but notice how the towels were not folded and kept straight, and that the soap dish was a bit slimy. Dear, you surely can do better than this. I realize I’m not perfect, but I would never waste a bar of soap by letting it dissolve in a slimy soap dish.

As I said, dear, I don’t want to embarrass you, so I won’t even mention all the other things. I just wanted to call a few of the more obvious problems to your attention. I know I don’t keep a spotless house myself, but things were different when I was your age. I just can’t do as much now as I used to.

I’m sure you won’t mind me telling you about these teensy problems since it is for your own good. As I said, I know you are busy and have a lot of running around to do, but I just felt it was my duty to let you know about these problems. If I can help you to figure out any of your other shortcomings, be sure to let me know. I’m always glad to help. After all, what is family for?

I’m going to delete this email now, dear, and you will never see it. It took me a while to figure it out, but the best advice a mother-in-law can possibly give is the advice she has learned to keep to herself.

Copyright 2001 Sheila Moss
Posted in Health, Home, Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Red, White and Blue

flag

A strange affliction is sweeping the nation. It seems to manifest itself in a peculiar compulsion to display the colors red, white and blue around July 4th. Nearly everywhere you go, you see people wearing these colors prominently. There are lapel pins, scarves, ribbons and neckties that look like the flag. The American flag has become a smash fashion accessory that is being worn everywhere.

If this isn’t enough by itself, other strange phenomena seem to be taking place as well. Signs in front of businesses spell out bizarre messages, such as “United We Stand… Kids Eat Free.” I even saw a billboard with a picture of the Statue of Liberty.

There are unusual newspaper ads with pictures of the American flag. Indeed, there are American flags displayed everywhere you look: on flagpoles, in the windows of businesses, on homes, thumb tacked on office cubicles, on car antennas – even on fire engines which go screaming down the street with sirens blasting and the American flag flying in the wind.

Yes, Americans are afflicted with a severe case of what is commonly called “patriotism,” i.e. love of country. Though the people of the U.S. may fight and argue among themselves, they draw together on patriotic holidays to rally around the flag pole and support each other with visible symbols of their loyalty to their country. Some even proudly display Old Glory alongside the flag of their favorite football team.

I’m telling ya, it’s positively unbelievable! The other day I saw a Confederate Flag flying at half-mast.  The National Anthem is playing on the radio every time you turn around, even if the ballgame is canceled! I almost had to stand up and salute in the doctor’s waiting room yesterday as strains of the Star Spangled Banner drifted in from the lobby!

Patriotic songs are suddenly big hits and celebrities and artists rush to the microphone to get in on the act. Patriotism, which almost went out of style for a while, became the rage after 911.

Red, white, and blue without a doubt is the fashion scheme of choice for Independence Day. It has never been easier to be in style. If you don’t have a T-shirt with a flag on front, you can buy one at any drug store or supermarket these days.  You can’t even drive to the grocery store without seeing “God Bless America” on a church or gas station message board.

It is kind of nice to see people so enthusiastic. It’s sort of fun to see so many flags flying in the breeze and so much red, white and blue on display. Maybe I should go down to the local Walmart and see if I can get a flag. Maybe I should get two – one for my car also – while I’m there?

I feel a little flushed. Maybe if I hum a few verses of “America the Beautiful” it will help. This patriotism thing is really be contagious!

Copyright 2001-2017 Sheila Moss
Edited
Posted in Holidays, Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments