All plop, no fizz

As usual this morning, I walked down the driveway toward the curb to fetch the newspaper. (I am one of those people who actually would prefer an afternoon paper, but the ten or twelve of us who still exist don’t count for much.) As usual, it was positioned on the section of concrete with the sharpest slant.

They say “Use your knees, not your back” to pick up stuff. If they had knees like mine, they never would have said such a thing. The Monday paper being generally smallish, I had a long way to go, and calculating the geometry of the matter, I spread my feet apart a few inches to buy some vertical. And then, having seized the paper, I unaccountably pitched forward, two, three steps, and wound up washing my face in the morning dew.

The fact that I was able to get up from this was heartening, or at least not leading to despondency. I dusted myself off and headed for the shop, figuring I can use the time at that traffic snarl around Penn Square to report that I wasn’t going to be in by 6:30.

No phone.

Evidently when I pulled myself off the ground, the little so-and-so stayed behind. I made a modestly mad dash in the opposite direction, retrieved the device, and started over. Okay, it was closer to 6:45. I can live with that. And they’re going to have to, you know?



  1. ms7168 »

    28 September 2015 · 8:04 am

    Exactly right. You’ve worked there forever so it is just one of the perks. Not like you abuse it.

  2. McGehee »

    28 September 2015 · 8:46 am

    When I want to pick up something off of slanted ground, I stand below it. Learned that on a backpacking trip when I was ten.

  3. CGHill »

    28 September 2015 · 9:17 am

    I was about 20 degrees off, then.

  4. fillyjonk »

    28 September 2015 · 10:04 am

    I keep my cellphone in a pocket while out doing fieldwork (fear of feral dogs, stepping in holes and breaking an ankle, that sort of thing). I always worry about dropping it and then having to find someone to go back out with me and call my phone (before the battery dies) so I can locate where it is.

    My dad can’t easily bend down (bad knees) so he has one of those “grabber” things to pick up the morning paper with. (I have a similar one but so I can reach cans off the high shelf in the kitchen without resorting to the step-stool)

  5. McGehee »

    28 September 2015 · 1:53 pm

    It did take me a few times to figure it out…

  6. McGehee »

    28 September 2015 · 1:55 pm

    …more to keep from being laughed at by my brother and his friends than anything else…

  7. fillyjonk »

    28 September 2015 · 7:00 pm

    Any time you’re wearing a heavy backpack of field gear (or whatever), you figure out pretty fast not to lean very far forward.

  8. CGHill »

    28 September 2015 · 7:30 pm

    The one thing that worries me now is that the area into which I faceplanted, now covered with grass, will presumably be covered with concrete once the new sidewalks come in. (I’m told the construction crew is about 12 blocks from me.)

  9. McGehee »

    29 September 2015 · 9:27 am

    Your newspaper should be willing to provide you with a delivery tube for the morning paper. If your mailbox is on your house instead of by the street, you might have to have a post put in for the tube, but even our suburban less-than-daily was willing to have that done for us at our previous house (and we did have a streetside mailbox there).

    As soon as the sidewalk is in, call the circulation office.

  10. CGHill »

    29 September 2015 · 9:42 am

    Mailboxes are on the houses; I don’t think the tubes will sit well with the quasi-historic zoning.

    I may yet lose the sidewalk, though; scuttlebutt last night was that they finally figured out that the crosswalks at the neighborhood school are on the other side of the road.

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