Friday, February 3, 2017

Screwing the Poop

I went over to Mom's, and she was out in the back yard hacking at frozen turds with a screwdriver.

"Mom? Mom!"

Mom turned around, the blade of the screwdriver glinting in the low winter sun. She was huffing clouds of smoke.

"What are you doing?"

"I'm trying to pick up Bingo's poop. But it's frozen in there!"

"Well, don't you have an acetylene torch, or something?" I said. "And it's not safe for you to be out in this snow. Besides, I don't think a screwdriver is the best way. Though I bet Freud might have something to say about that."

"What are you blabbering about?"

"Nothing. Sorry."

Mom gave up on the turd hacking, and we went back inside. Bingo slunk behind Mom's recliner, growling at me.

"If there was only some way to keep those turds warm out there," I said, keeping my distance from Bingo. "Maybe make them little sweaters?"

Bingo kept growling.

"BAH!" Mom cried. She clapped her hands. "BAH!"

Bingo slunk deeper behind the chair.

"That 'bah' stuff doesn't seem to work, Mom. Is that what the trainer told you to do?"

"Yes. Here, let me get him a treat. I have some rotisserie chicken..." Mom placed the screwdriver next to her plate of half-eaten food. "Here, Bingo! Here you go...!"

Mom dropped greasy pieces behind her chair. The growling ceased.

Mom sat, exhausted. She lifted her arm to show me that she was wearing a Fitbit on her wrist.

"Look, I'm up to 2000 steps today. See?" Mom waved her arm. "Now I have 2002! I'm supposed to do 8000 steps a day, but that's not happening."

"So you get more steps if you move your arm?"

"Yes." Mom waved her arm. Then checked the readout. "Yes, I get a few more like this..."

"But aren't you supposed to walk instead?"

"I'm moving my arm. That's something!" Mom waved her arm.

"It's great that you can buy a device that reminds you how inadequate and worthless you are. Technology--it's fannnnn-tastic!!"

"What are you giggling about? Why are you so strange?"

"Actually, it's good that you have a Fitbit, Mom. You don't want to end up like that lady at the library."

"What lady?" Leaning back on her plush recliner, Mom put her arm down.

"I was shelving holds and I saw a woman on the floor, sprawled face-down. I walked past her and then did a double-take. She was back in the 700s, just face-down on the floor. I went over to her, and she immediately got up. I asked if she was okay, and she said she was fine. She went back to reading her book, sitting on the floor."

"Oh, that reminds me! I've been doing word searches on the computer. But now the game site wants me to download Flash Adobe. What is that? What should I do?"

"I can help you with that, Mom. But..."


"I hope you're doing more than just word searches on the new computer I bought you."

"I like doing word searches."

"Yes, but you can buy word search puzzles for 69 cent at the local pharmacy. I don't know if you really need a new computer for that."

Mom frowned. Bingo started to growl. That was my cue.

As I went for the door, Mom tossed the screwdriver. "Put this in the sink before you leave!" she yelled.

The screwdriver hit me in the chest and fell to the carpet. I looked at it, looked at Mom, and then ran out.


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