Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Friday, October 13, 2006

Freaky Friday

by Kerry Blair

Today is Friday the 13th. Fortunately, I am not superstitious. I know perfectly well that while this morning has begun with a series of unfortunate events, they have nothing whatsoever to do with the day or date. Here’s what’s happened thus far:

While I was sleeping, the cat deposited a hairball (super-deluxe, extra-slimy edition) on the exact spot my bare foot hits when I get out of bed in the morning. My shrill cry of dismay activated our biological alarm system (the pit bull) who barked loud enough to wake the neighbors up the street -- the ones trying to get a little shut-eye in the cemetery.

After deactivating the dog and demucking my foot, I searched for my glasses. No luck. Thus I stumbled toward the bathroom like a newborn field mouse. Oh, wait. Bad analogy. There is a full-grown field mouse (or possibly a gigantic rat) decomposing at its leisure within the walls of my bathroom. The smell takes “putrid” and ratches it up six notches. When you read my next book -- and I know you will -- you’ll come across a vivid description of the odor of rotting flesh. Remember then that I know whereof I speak.

When my stomach settled I was ready for breakfast. Unable to make out the timer on the toaster oven (see "lost glasses" above) I reduced a blueberry bagel to a charcoal briquette. This wouldn’t have been so bad if not for my new high-tech smoke detectors. “Smoke detected in kitchen!” a mechanical voice screeched hysterically. “Evacuate! Evacuate!” Before I could resume breathing, let alone turn it off and/or run for my life, another took up the cry: “Smoke detected in hallway! Evacuate! Evacuate!” Soon, five hysterical voices were screaming all over the house. Two of them were me and my mother. (But, you know, I’ve always wondered what happened to Will Robinson’s robot when Lost in Space was cancelled and now I know. He’s doing voice-overs for a smoke detector manufacturer in Toledo. When that company starts adding little waving arms to their excitable round boxes they’ll really have something.)

If I were superstitious I might attribute all this to the date on the calendar. (Or to the mirror I broke five-and-a-half years ago, the ladder I walked under last week, or the black cat that crosses my path every time he musters up the energy to drag his fat, lazy carcass out of the easy chair.)

But I’m not superstitious. Really. I toss salt over my shoulder only because my grandmother did and it seems like a charming way to remember her. Everybody knocks on wood, picks up pennies, crosses their fingers, tosses coins into fountains, blows out candles on birthday cakes, and wishes on the first star of the evening, so none of that could be superstitious in origin. Right? Sure, I avoid stepping on cracks, but here in Arizona they're likely to have centipedes in them. I hold my breath going through tunnels, but that's because I'm claustrophobic. Moreover, the horseshoe that hangs over my door is a memento from a family camping trip. The European witching ball is a decoration, as is the Native American dream catcher. The fairy rings on the front lawn form by themselves. (I can’t grow a tomato, but if you ever need a poisonous toadstool for an omelet, I’m the girl to go to.) The four-leaf clovers in so many of my tomes are bookmarks. And, while I do sometimes remember to say "Rabbit, rabbit" first thing on the first day of a month, I have never, ever possessed a rabbit’s foot that was not still attached to a living, breathing bunny at the time.

So, clearly, I am not superstitious. So what if I just spilled orange juice on the keyboard, causing my right "shift" key to stick? that could have happened on a tuesday the 10th.

Don’t worry, I’m fine, but I can’t blog anymore today. In fact, I think I'll go back to bed. My throat feels a little scratchy. I may be coming down with something. Possibly paraskavedekatriaphobia. I hear it’s going around.


At 10/13/2006 6:24 PM, Anonymous Anura Ranidae said...

I can't believe it! I actually know the meaning of one of your big words. I just don't know how to pronounce paraskavedekatriaphobia. By the way did your big froggy drown in your blog? I haven't seen him for a long time, but that's okay, I'm just glad you're back.

At 10/13/2006 6:38 PM, Blogger Mean Aunt said...

Friday the 13th was the best day ever in 5th grade! Hamburgers at lunch, square dancing with the cute tall boy for PE, rain, and on the way home a new drugstore was giving away free slurpees!

At 10/13/2006 6:51 PM, Blogger John Ferguson said...

Just remember, it is really bad luck to be superstitious.

At 10/13/2006 7:44 PM, Blogger Evil HR Lady said...

Please tell me you are joking about your day...

At 10/13/2006 11:54 PM, Blogger Kerry Blair said...

Thanks, a.r.! If you happen to see Frederick, send him back, would you? Frogs are considered lucky, you know.

evil hr: I wish. Fur ball. Dead mouse. Orange juice. It happens. Might as well laugh about it. Except the mouse, of course. If there is anything funny about a decomposing mouse, I don't know what it is!


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