THE SEVEN DAY ITCH

Let’s get back to nagging problems with spots and their removal.  The miserable marks I will now “cover” were all over my body a few weeks ago after a refreshing dip in the sea.  While visiting my in-laws in sunny Florida, I noticed a purple flag billowing over the lifeguard stand down on the beach.  Imagining large critters lurking in the invitingly aqua water, I cautiously splashed in the shallow edge of the Atlantic, enjoying cool, clear waves splashing over my warm body.  Keeping an eye out for Bruce the Shark or some of his mates, I fooled around in the surf while tracking the planes soaring overhead.  It was a typical, carefree morning in/on Palm Beach.

Too late, I would read:  March through August is “sea lice season” along the southeast Florida Atlantic coastline. Sea Bather’s Eruption, commonly known as “sea lice”, is caused by a larval (microscopic) form of the thimble jellyfish.  These larvae are so small they are barely visible.  When people swim in the affected ocean water, the larvae become trapped in bathing suits and cause tiny stings.  The toxins released from these stings cause itching, irritation, and welts several hours later.  The itching usually lasts 2-4 days, but can last as long as 2 weeks.  Some people have more severe reactions:  headache, fever, nausea, and infected blisters.  Children may develop high fever.

My misery set in approximately twenty-four hours later as we window- shopped in downtown Palm Beach.  As chicken pox-looking spots popped out on my body, I felt the possibility of anaphylactic shock coming on, an experience I had survived in my twenties after being stung by an insect while swimming in a pool.  As fate would have it, my symptoms peaked as I stood outside a drugstore.  Thinking fast, I approached the pharmacist who took quick action.  He handed me a packet of pills, a tube of gel, and a bottle of water to swallow one of the magic meds.  Next he directed me across the street to PUBLIX to buy a bottle of vinegar.  My orders were to undress, and pour the vinegar over my body to release toxins.  So there I was locked in a stall of the supermarket ladies’ room bathing my itching body in Heinz vinegar.  I smelled like a salad as I smoothed the miraculous gel over my spotted self.  Within minutes I found relief, as more welts appeared up and down legs, arms and torso.  (Thank god I did not put my head under water that fateful morning…)

I spent the rest of the afternoon lying in a soothing tub of water/white vinegar /baking soda–wondering if I’d ever venture into the ocean again.  It turned out my case ran longer than the average 2-4 days; it was one week before I stopped itching and trying not to scratch as the bites began fading.  Admittedly, I had flu-like symptoms the following week, and was not up to my usual super powers at TABATA the third week, or should I say weak.  Now nearly a month since my attack at sea, I am fine, physically anyway.

A compulsive writer, I need to relate my sadly serious sea story, and hope all you readers will take care if and when bathing in waters along the southeast Florida coast.  In addition to keeping watch for cruel creatures in the Atlantic, look for my upcoming book, “Naked Joy”, coming to book stores still open.


NUMBERS GUY TIMES TWO

Assuming you read my last post, my tutoring son worked last week with a special pupil whose father died while he can do numbers in his head, not unlike Rain Man.   First session with tutor, Bobby completed an essay detailing his father’s death, minus emotion.  But you know this if you follow my blog.

I am writing to inform that  the unique student returned the other day for more life lessons, human contact, sharing the specifics of his father’s passing, and discussing his love of numbers, large and small, (not necessarily in that order).  My empathetic son was pleased to see the memorable kid return for his help, and reported to me that this day he was not wearing a football jersey with numbers, like the time before.

Bobby was wearing a colorful tie-dyed shirt with a large letter on the front symbolizing Pi–

 π

And now I must get back to serious writing at hand.  Please stay tuned for my memoir, “Naked Joy “coming as fast as I can get it published.


A NUMBERS GUY

My playful boy is now an earnest young man. You should recall he graduated last month from Tom Jefferson’s univeersity here in Virginia.  Our slogan is “Virginia is for Lovers’” and I love that our sun received Highest Distinction and Distinguished Major for his degrees in physics and philosophy.  Honest.

Meanwhile, he is tutoring students both young and old still in Charlottesville.  And the other evening he phoned to tell me about a new client, whom we will call Bobby for now.  The kid entered the office wearing a football jersey and appearing to be about 15 years young.  My son initiated conversation asking “So, Bob, you like football?”

The stone faced kid (who turned out to be 19 and a student at UVA)  replied “No.  I just like numbers. And my dad is dead”.

Not one to miss a trick, the tutor realized he was dealing with a very special pupil.  To prove his theory, he poked at his calculator and asked his student to solve a quick problem.

“What is 242,955  x  437?”

And got the exact, right answer from the boy who’d lost his father and written a poignant essay about the fact showing no emotion, just the facts.

Call my son  Genius , then call Bobby  Idiot Savant, Autistic, Brilliant, Socially Inept, or better—

Rain Man.


TABLE TIMES

Shopping is not my idea of time well spent.  But consumers have needs and dinner is a necessity.

No one wants to go hungry.  So we stock our cupboards and fill the fridge and defrost the freezer.

All in the interest of a good meal for family, friends and fullness.

Writing about friends, I have a good one up in the Big Apple.  But she has, I mean, had NO table.

So I guess she and her partner and his kid ate standing up for ever.  When I dropped buy we’d usually binge and skip out to a diner where there were many tables from which we could choose.  Bill tended to wait for us and I paid him off under the bar.  (This is  “TMI”—but I happen to know bill spends his free time in a gorge.)

Once home in Virginia I bake a green ham and head out to the maul to find a classy dressing.  Passing by a furniture shop I eye a large piece of oak in the window, perched upon a yummy looking stand.  “A FRICKIN TABLE FOR MY FAULTY FRIEND”  I whisper to myself, swallowing hard.

PLUS..it is on SAIL.   So I charge it on my VISTA card—get the miles, order it shipped up to her –and just might tell her it costed more than I paid.

Call it a “finders’fee”…

!Buon Appetite!


THE SPINNING WHEEL

The other day at the jim some of us girls and one brave guy were peddling our wears.  Fitness Cat, our lean and mean cycling/ torture trainer, informed us her former neighbor mowed the lawn in hoop earrings, a tube top, mini skirt, and spiked heels.  We thought this was not sew odd until she called Her Him.

He cut the green rug while his wife and three kids were at the super market in plain clothes.  Cat watched the man drag the mower back and forth over high grass.  She called her husband in from the closet to observe what she witnessed and as proof she was not lying down on the job.  (The wise- guy also liked to blow his leaves dressed to kill.)

I am not sure why men cross dress.  When women Don tuxedos, overalls or kilts no one gives a darn.  But dress a man in a sheath and he is suddenly queer.  Go figure you knit wits.

Cat maid me stay after class to disgust trans fats and how I dress for success.  Then she shared that she has a forthcoming trip to Amsterdam.  She loves fancy pots, bright red lights, and dykes.

Me, I just like to right about life as it plays out–

and wait for my book—“Naked Joy” to be published so I can tour the USA in my Chevrolet and visit all you suckers who read this Blog.

Many warm thanks; do not hem nor haw at my werk.


FIRST CLASS FRIENDS

Flying home from Palm Beach on Saturday the man seated next to me in 6B quietly fingered his e book and squirmed.  It was freezing on our flight, we both agreed as we pulled on sweaters and huddled our arms, not together, but next to our sides.  The trip to Atlanta was uneventful and the flight attendant, an attractively pleasant Asian American provided service worthy of his class.

As the plane descended over Hartsfield airport I spoke to my seatmate.  “Is this home for you?”
“No, I live in L.A.” he replied.

“I went to grad school there—what part is your home?”  I asked.

Studio City was his answer.  He is a jazz pianist/helicopter instructor and very fascinatingly nice person.  He proceeded to explain to me he had just been in Florida playing music for an upcoming Christmas CD featuring two well -known performers.  He claimed the woman is a lovely person but the man is nocturnal so they worked from midnight till seven a.m. for daze and he was exhausted—eager to get home to sunny California.

You have probably seen this cute couple before—way back in 1978 when they filmed a blockbuster American musical set in a 1950s high school.  Danny and Sandy were beautifully portrayed by John Travolta and Olivia Newton John.

I refrained from asking my new friend any details about John’s latest capers. I happen to love the person and refuse to believe he is anything but a great guy with extreme talent.

Hey, we all have our issues.