Bored on the Fourth of July 2013

Aging & Attitude

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We had been to the beach in the morning, a barbeque in the afternoon and now we were walking to the Town Green for the fireworks.  Mr. Wonderful spies a stone wall spot wide enough for two fannies, and inquires of the boy sitting next to his family, “Are these taken?”

The space is available; we sit and attempt to get comfortable on the hard rock.

The kid has a sour face and being a Grandma, I poke him with my elbow and say in a friendly way, “You don’t look happy.”

“I’m bored,” is his response.

“What’s wrong with being bored?”  I ask. “It isn’t an illness; people get bored, great ideas are born in boredom.”

His perplexed look is memorable, not rude and I continue talking. “How long have you been bored?”

“A few minutes,” he mumbles but sits up, straightens his back.

I have his attention, now what to do with it. I say, “You must have an exciting life if you’ve only been bored a few minutes.”

“Actually I do, have you ever heard of Malaysia?”

I nodded my head yes.

“I was born in Malaysia, before my parents got married, then we moved to California. They got married and I have two brothers. Now we live in Georgia.” He informs me with animation.

His mother’s glance in my direction confirms my inclination not to ask questions. I lean forward to see his brothers who look nothing like him.

Thinking, better bring the conversation back to boring, I say, “Boredom could be time for your brain to rest, or think. You seem thoughtful, how old are you?”

“Why don’t you guess?” is his baited reply.

I study his intelligent eyes and sudden smile, and decided to err on the side of older. “Thirteen?”

“Gee, most people say ten or eleven, I’m twelve.” He answers not hiding his pleasure.

“Seems you’re a thinker, does your school encourage thinking?” He knows my point without further explanation.

“Well you see, mostly you have to have the right answer, but the teacher lets us fight but everyone yells and I…

I interject, “we called it discussions or debates, and the yelling, heated or passionate, like John Adams and Thomas Jefferson did in Congress.”

His mind fast, forwards, “Well, have you heard of  the Marshal Art Taekwondo? See I’m a black belt, the, master is very strict with me, well, like if I don’t do something I have to do push ups, because I will be like a  leader, like keeping peace. Well, it’s like teaching etiquette, or right, have you heard about etiquette?”

“Like a Benjamin Franklin?” I ask, and watch him absorb my comment as the first fireworks explode across the sky.

We are both quiet for the next half hour and enjoy the special effects of our conversation.

Leaving, I ask, “What is your name?”

“Joshua,” he answers with a smile of perfect teeth.

“Joshua, thanks for talking with me.”

I want to say, but don’t, “I’ve heard of discipline and etiquette and feel hopeful for America, you have too.”

The thought lingers in the air.

. . . . Just saying

L is for Limericks and Lobbyists – The Alphabet Series

New Thoughts on Words

shannon

Aging & Attitude

The words limerick and lobbyist make me laugh.  A limerick is a nonsense poem that follows a strict rhyme scheme (AABBA). The intent is to be humorous and obscene, many consider a clean limerick an oxymoron. Edward Lear is credited with popularizing the amphibrachic meter.

A limerick needs to be bawdy if not dirty.  This video Grandma Sis’s dirty limerick  captures the art form wonderfully. Please note the yellow sectional couch wrapped in plastic they are sitting on.

Competing with Grandma Sis is not easy, but I hope my first attempt (using L words) will bring you a chuckle.

There once was a lady who worked in Londonderry

She was lazy, lascivious and ordinary

She dressed in the nude

And was extremely rude

But somehow was paid anyway

    Lobbying is the practice of trying to influence decisions made by government officials. President Ulysses S. Grant’s  frequent visits to the Willard Hotel lobby to enjoy a cigar and brandy popularized the term. The hotel is a short walk from the White House. Washington wheelers and dealers knew where to find him and  pay for his drinks.

I have come up with this ditty.

There once was a President who had a hobby

He liked to hang out in the Willard Hotel lobby

When he was there he’d collapse in a chair

Light up a cigar and blow smoke into the air

And listen to political folly

My next limerick hopefully captures more recent shenanigans.

In 1995 Congress strengthened lobby laws

Although compromised, registration still has flaws

With a flick of a pen, Super PAC’s are in

Lobbyist’s spend a fifth of their time drinking gin

We still hear politicians clapping their paws

If you would like to try writing  a limerick click here limerick poem.

Please share your efforts in the comments section. It was fun but harder than I thought.

….just saying