I must confess. I’ve never been one to think about my derriere. But (no pun intended), since last week, my butt is all I can think about.
In my younger days, I was a fairly decent and athletic specimen. I’ve ridden horses most of my life. Never fell off one and that includes herding cattle or jumping English. Didn’t own a car for three years in my 20s and my transportation was a big ol’ huge motorcycle. The times I dropped it? Or any bike, touring or dirt? Zero. Not to suggest I’m the half-Polish god of the Olympics, I’ve suffered many misfortunes with the unforgiving side of physics and gravity.
Playing football, 1963, Newhall Park, full-speed, I ran, head-first, into a mighty conifer. Knocked myself out. If any of you with metal detectors happen to detect a handful of unclaimed IQ points in the park grass? They’re mine. Please return them to The Signal office. They’re hopefully the missing pieces of the puzzle deterring me from penning a decipherable column all these decades. I’ve stabbed myself with everything from pencil to ax. I’ve neglected to back far enough out from exiting under a table. Attempting to stand a foot too soon, I’ve whacked my head so hard as to have out-of-body experiences, coincidentally, the same ones I’ve experienced when the priest asked: “Hey. Thunderstruck. Wake up. Make the call: ‘I do’ or not?”
Last week, I got the heel of my sock caught on my deformed office chair mat.
This is, and has been, a stupid office chair mat.
I shopped around before I bought it a couple years back. Eschewing the standard, reliable clear, thick plastic chair mats, I picked a designer one that, like some of my exes, looked good but had near-fatal design flaws. For one thing, it was not one, solid piece, but rather, came in hardwood slats. The problem with that is over the months, the carpet-protector warps. Instead of being flat now, it’s more the shape of a canoe. I take a slight step backward — a practice I’ve been repeating in all aspects of my life since toddlerhood — when the back of my sock caught on the lip of the canoe. Er, chair pad. Or, as the makers from some communist-sympathizing exporting country advertise on their warning label:
Dear Capitalism-Supporting Western Pig:
Due to manufacturing lexicon that some oppressive cultures may address as ‘slipshod,’ like, the definition of a woman, we shall steadfastly maintain to be all-inclusive and describe our chair mats as ‘canoe-like’ or ‘identifying as both a canoe AND office chair mat. Ditto with the racist and highly limiting term of ‘high-quality.’ Please take all safety precautions when taking any of our fine family of office products onto any major or minor bodies of water and obey all international maritime laws.
— Sincerely, Ho Chi Minh Office Supplies; a subsidiary of Acme Paint and Ordnance.
So. A thread from my sock catches on the edge of the chair pad. Funny how the body reacts. As if thrown by Hulk Hogan, I descend to the floor, back first. Instead of my hands tucking in so I can conduct a perfect 180-degree flip and land on all fours, like the cat daddy I am, I land on my coccyx (the tailbone, not the next Democrat-created national health emergency). Then, in order: 1) The small of my back hits the chair; 2) I hit the floor with my tailbone; 3) Then, my neck hits the edge of the couch; 4) Which drives my chin into my sternum.
I think Nature, in Its great love for us, plants within us the You’re Kidding Yourself Grace Period. I’m on the floor, moaning and saying un-Christian things like, “Ow” and “Jiminy Christmas.” I take a quick inventory. I’m hurting, but, I’m OK. I think. That’s the grace period when Nature says: “You’re going to feel pretty good for about 12 hours. That’ll give you enough time to plan your funeral because in 12.00001 hours, your tailbone’s gonna hurt so bad you’ll wish you were tied to a chair, watching the Jan. 6 Committee Hearings.”
I’d rather run into a pine tree as many times as necessary.
Sure enough, 12 hours later, I was stoved-up. I had to use my face to push myself out of bed. Walking? If I were on Main Street, people would stop to give me directions: “Auditions for Canyon Theatre Guild’s pretentious ‘Hunchback of Notre Dame’ are thattuh-way…”
“Hunch-person,” I’d correct.
Or “Person of Hunch…” for those of you who voted for Biden.
There was no comfortable position to sleep. The next day, I made the mistake of trying to sit in a chair. Like inching yourself into a volcano, there’s just no easy way to do it. Ten pillows. No pillows. Sleeping standing up. It was more uncomfortable than childbirth.
DEAR MR. SCV:
How DARE you.
Best wishes for your continued success,
SCV La Leche League
Literally? I had to move my computer from my desk (and away from the Devil North Vietnamese Chair Mat) and put it atop a tall dresser, chest-high. For the past week, I’ve been writing standing up.
Better than pecking at the keyboard with a wooden stick between my teeth, like a Harvard philosophy professor.
On the bright side for me and my loved ones, aw-crap bad side for my many detractors, I’m mending well.
I do wonder. Perhaps this is just karma. Perhaps I’ve spent a lifetime being such a Pain-In-The-Asterisk, maybe this tumble is just my fitting desserts.
Is it a sign?
Should I stop needling those so less-fortunate than me? You know. Like the resumé-inflating booger-eating, self-righteous, society-destroying and hypocritical liberals with brains more fitting rattling about in a star fish? Hmmmm.
John Boston is earth’s most prolific humorist and satirist. Look for his new book, “The 37 (or so) Most Terribly Inappropriate Dog Breeds,” coming out soon at johnbostonbooks.com. Funniest dog book ever written. Period.