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A week spent surviving three things

August 5, 2012
Weirton Daily Times

Since I last wrote for this space, I've survived three things:

A power outage of some duration, which in my book is anything that lasts an hour;

The continued unexplained disappearance of my favorite pair of holey barn jeans and Better Half's threadbare black "Oklahoma" T-shirt I bought him at a yard sale circa 1995 (the topic of last week's column); and

A dental procedure, which puts me in Olympic gold contention for having my mouth open for the longest time without any idle chatter emitting from it (an event that Better Half would later lament he was sorry to have missed).

Yes, we had no electricity one evening after one of those wild storms came swirling through, leaving us literally powerless to do much of anything.

Doesn't it just figure that an outage strikes when you're in the mood to read a good book or watch a certain television show?

A neighbor delivered the bad news early on, mentioning the electric could be off much longer than we'd like it to be - in my book, two hours.

As it turned out, it was more than half a day.

Time for the candles and a sobering reminder that your flashlight batteries are as dead as ever.

There not being much to do without electricity other than meditate, which makes me sleepy anyway, I turned in early, getting a head start on my Sawing Logs Sonata. I felt confident the power people would have us electrified by morning.

Wrong. Nothing says beauty like makeup application by the glow of three Bath and Body candles. I couldn't wait to get to work - not just for the brewed coffee, but for the bathroom electrical outlets to dry my hair.

Power outages aren't entirely without merit. They're a great excuse for not ironing and a great excuse for being heroic and eating all the ice cream so it won't melt.

As for the missing clothes, I have looked high and low and in between only to come up short and exasperated.

I did have a phone message at work the other day from a gal in the county's southern end, claiming she found my jeans at her house, but she doesn't know anything about Better Half's T-shirt.

I'm beginning to think I gave them to Goodwill.

Wouldn't that be funny if I had to buy back ratty clothes that already belong to me.

As for the "dental procedure," that almost sounds like it's akin to car maintenance - you know, tire rotation or an oil change or something.

My "dental procedure" really wasn't bad at all. I wasted a lot of time mentally anticipating it, dreading it and not wanting to go through with it.

The only bad thing was that I couldn't return to work immediately afterwards as I figured I would.

I went home instead to follow doctor's orders: keep a cold compress on your mouth for four hours.


An extra 240 minutes of no idle chatter passing through my frozen lips.

It's been a banner week for Better Half.

(Kiaski, a resident of Steubenville, is a staff columnist and features writer for the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times and community editor for the Herald-Star. She can be contacted at

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