Early Monday morning

I discovered, to my dis-tress,

that, sometime during the 

previous evening,


— I didn’t know who — 

had stolen my car.


I immediately called the police

& filed a report.

The police-man they sent to my

apartment told me that

they would do their best,

but not to hold out too much hope.


On the following Monday,

the same police-man called me,

and in a hopeful voice, said that

they had located my vehicle,

but, he warned, it had been

stripped of everything.


“Oh, no!” I cried, but, really,

I had expected the worse.

So, I thanked him and said,

“OK, I’ll come by and pick it up —- ”

But the policeman interupted me & said, 

“Don’t worry about it,

we’ll just mail it to you.”


One week later,

I rec’d an envelope in the mail

from the police.


Inside the envelope was

my windshield wiper blade.


Under-neath the blade

was a ticket.      


I imagine the WWE organisation has a guy whose only job is to order more foldable tables.

Happy New Y’ar!

I suppose I have always been lucky …

My family & friends say I that mis-remember a lot

of my past. And maybe that’s true — for some things.

But there are also places & people that I will never forget.

Such as growing up in a ginger-bread house,

or the Man with No Bones.

And, one thing in particular, my moms peculiar way

of setting the dinner table.


For as long as I can remember, my mother always set

the table with two sets of identical salt & pepper shakers.

Seems trivial, I know.

But we were only a family of four.

And it made little difference if only two or three of us

were eating that night. My mother would still place, on

the table, two sets of identical

salt & pepper shakers.


I recall one day having to stay home from school

due to a high fever.

My dad rolled in the TV set so I could watch

cartoons, and my mom brought in a tray

of my favorite foods: Spaghetti O’s & a side of

saltine crackers.

And on the tray … two sets of identical

salt & pepper shakers.

I think that may have been the first time I

questioned it. But only to myself.

Otherwise, I said nothing …


And the seasons passed, and the years went by

and we all got a little bit older and a little bit wiser.

And through it all there was but one constant,

and you may have all ready guessed it.

It was my mom setting the table with two sets

of identical salt & pepper shakers.

Still I said nothing …


Until last week, when I went to visit my mother at

the Home of the Very Age-ed. She and I sat in her

small room & reminisced about family members who

had long ago passed on. And then, finally, after an hour or so

of light conversation, I gathered up the nerve

to ask her the question that had nagged me for so many years.

Why — Why did you always set the table with two sets of

identical salt & pepper shakers?


My mother closed her eyes as if in deep thought.

And a strange, other-worldy calmness seemed to

suddenly pour over her entire being.


Finally, she opened her eyes.

I leaned in close so as not to miss a word.

Said my mother,

“One set of the identical

salt & pepper shakers, my son  was poison!”



for j.p.


Per the Trefological calendar, to-day, February the 1st, is officially the beginning of the new year.

So, from all of me to some of you, I want to wish you a happy new y’ar.

Your friend (in life)

the undersigned,

geo. raymond