I’m actually here! I’m in! Forty-seven-year-old me is sitting pretty. Next, we’ll start a bowling league and get t-shirts with nicknames on them, and they’ll elect me Big Hammer and I can totally tell my therapist I was so wrong about that mid-life crisis paralysis. Wait. Stop. Be cool. Be cool. OK. Cool.
Nice. Scored the seat in the middle of the table so my good ear can catch conversation from the left side and my Dollar Store readers can allow me to interpret lips on the other.
I wonder if I can get a cup of water and take this Alka-Seltzer without being noticed? The food here is so salty and I’m definitely gonna get heartburn. Ugh. Dropped it. Reach. Reach. Got it! Oh, the floor’s disgusting. Never mind, never mind, just gulp it down. You’ve got to. Don’t think about it. Ewww… fuzzy… Oh yeah. Mission accomplished. Well, that shoulder’s gonna hurt tomorrow, but I don’t think a soul noticed my swan dive.
Oh my gosh, “Cool Jim” just sat down next to me. I need to get a picture for The Facebook without him noticing. Dang. Just got his ear. One more… Abort! Abort! He’s looking at me really weird. I’ll just do that thing where I look back at him really funny like he did something strange… It’s not working… Huh… It works with the cats. Did Fluffy take her pill? Wait, did I take my pill?
Quick. Remember some of those jokes we rehearsed in front of the mirror in case this happened. Just don’t do that drooly thing with your mouth you always do these days before you speak and definitely don’t accidentally snort. Use a strategy. Strategy plus you and me makes friends times three. My therapist is going to be so proud. Shoot. Did I remember to pay her today?
That’s hilarious, Jim just… oh geez! Honestly, I can’t believe it… He’s a card. How does he get his leg to do that? Wait a minute. Wait a minute. They’re taking a picture. Oh my gosh, a group picture. This is it. Jim will post it on The Instagram and I’ll be in forever. YES! Time to make a move…Nooooo, my hip is doing that thing it always does and now I can’t feel my toes. I’m never going to be able to get up from this chair. Why did I skip my Aleve this morning?
Yes! That’s it! Take the picture for them on your phone… then you can do a BEST-FRIENDS POST… They’re getting annoyed. They’re getting annoyed. What is wrong with you? Put on your reading glasses, swipe up, enter your password, search for the camera app, click on it, turn on the flash, focus, and take the dang photo. It’s so simple. Well, Sarah’s just a show off clicking directly on the camera like that, not everyone can see that button.
Get over it. Just move on. It’s finished.
This menu is ridiculous. How can I tell what’s low fat, low salt, low sugar and gluten-free? Really, they should make it more clear. Do they want me to burp all through dinner? What does this waitress know anyway… grimacing at me like that? Who made her judge? She’s like eleven years old. How is she even allowed to serve drinks? Really it must be well past her bedtime.
I’m getting so tired. That third of a glass of wine really did me in. I’ve got to get home. If I don’t get to bed right when I’m sleepy it’s past the point and then I can’t sleep at all. There’s also the three a.m. wake up from indigestion.
What’s with these people anyway. Are they seriously going to a bar next? Who’s at a bar at this time of the night? Even the cats don’t stay up to 10:00 p.m. I give up. I’m done. Bowling’s completely off the table. I wonder where the AARP chapter meets.
Vicki Austin, faculty and dorm parent at Wyoming Seminary College Preparatory School, lives with her husband, two children and 80 or so other teenage boys in Kingston, Pennsylvania. Vicki has more than 20 years of experience in many facets of education and is currently shifting her writing focus from persuasive to creative. Vicki’s most recent work has been featured on the Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop blog, included in the online journals Projected Letters and Wraparound South and printed in The Walls Between Us: Essays in Search of Truth, a Juncture publication. You can find Vicki on Twitter @VickiAustin02 and offer her encouragement as she puts the finishing touches on her first novel.