Write it down in hopes of a future column

Write it down.

This is a command I tell myself and hear from Better Half from time to time when something seems to be a potential tidbit, a theme or an idea for a future column.

Truth be told, if I don’t write myself a note, the thought could well be history, lost in a haze of Janice this and that mental memos.

I followed my own advice and Better Half’s in recent weeks when I jotted down some notes on the back of a pad of checks of all things. So much for being a prepared journalist with paper always at the ready.

At the time when I pawed through the contents of my Bermuda Triangle purse, the check pad was all I could find to write something on.

But hey, I reassured myself with renewed column-writing purpose, musicians and scriptwriters have been known to scribble the seed of something spectacular on a moist napkin or an old envelope, right?

When I thought about the topic for today’s space, I remembered that I’d written something or other somewhere.

I came across it without too much duress and thought, yes, victory! I looked at the back of the check pad and recognized my familiar chicken scratch. Oh how my penmanship has digressed since grade school when cursive was king and neat handwriting mattered.

I had to get out my secret decoder ring to make sense of it all and even with that for assistance, it took some extra brain cell uniting on my part to figure out what it all meant.

Ahh yes, first a post I had seen on Facebook that had made me laugh: “‘Exercise’ — I thought you said ‘Extra fries!'”

That prompted a conversation about what is actually said vs. what we think we hear.

Case in point: Better Half had asked me about the whereabouts of the back porch “fly swatter,” so very important in his single-handed mission to reduce the local fly population.

In a gesture of niceness, I brought him a “glass of water,” thinking that was his request.

Oops.

Another case in point: A co-worker and I were chatting. She was talking about “taxes.” I could have sworn she was beginning a conversation about “Texas.” I think my hearing must have been compromised from chewing on a gala apple.

I also had this “note to self” on the back of this check pad, which says something about me as a consumer — still a dinosaur writing checks. I always feel like I should apologize in the grocery line for using one.

“You don’t need to fill that out, Ma’am,” clerks always assure me when they see me scribbling in warp speed. I know. I’m old school.

Anyway, the back of this check pad noted — “bat, hymns, cold feet, bags.”

What on Earth??

Oh yes, I was sitting on the back porch one evening around dusk, listening to the “hymns” playing on the church carillon. All of a sudden I heard something hit the wall behind me, not far from the top of my head.

Startled, I looked down and saw a “bat.” I let out a muffled girly-girly scream and dashed into the house to be rescued by Better Half, who is used to me over-reacting.

When we returned to deal with the bat, it was gone. Yikes!

What a day it had been. At work the office was so “cold” my bare “feet” in sandals cried for warmth, so I wrapped each foot in a grocery “bag” in what I thought was a valiant, resourceful effort to retain heat.

I can only speak for myself here, but I’m so glad I keep notes on my exciting existence.

(Kiaski, a resident of Richmond, is a staff columnist and community editor for the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Ties. She can be contacted at jkiaski@heraldstaronline.com.)

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