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July 22, 2001
efficiency and studied mirth
I left work early Friday to receive a massage at the hands of the lovely and talented Chantel. There is nothing quite like having your naked body rubbed with oil by a stranger. Chantel is always on; "going through the motions" is a concept foreign to her. The first time she worked on me, I peeped through the face-hole of the massage table. My eyes were pulled back by the rim of the hole like a kid doing a Charlie Chan impression, and I wasn't wearing my glasses, but I could still see that Chantel works barefoot. That sealed the deal for me. Anyway, besides the obvious pleasure in having my soft tissues massaged, I enjoy the chance to act as though this is nothing but a clinical, therapeutic endeavor. This attractive, young, barefoot woman is rubbing oil deep into the muscles of my inner thighs and buttocks and I (we?) pretend there is no sexual component to it. Ha!
It has been five days since my wife called me from her yoga training at the Kripalu Institute in the Berkshires. Perhaps she morphed into pure energy and has scattered as light throughout the universe and there is no telephone out there. Saturday morning, I awoke and began my routine: let the dog and cat out, fed them, turned on the coffee-maker and read the newspaper. After a breakfast of scrambled eggs and an English muffin, I cleaned the kitchen and went by the office. Since no birds would eat from my office feeder, I retrieved it with plans to add it to the space outside this study window. I left the office and went to the health food store where I purchased Saw Palmetto Berries (Serenoa Repens) which, as you know, promotes prostate health. I gave the clerk a twenty and the kind of wink that says "I take good care of my prostate"; then I drove to the supermarket to do some grocery shopping.
Albertson's may be under renovation, but they still play good grocery-shopping music. No sooner had I picked out a shopping cart with one bad wheel and a sticky push-handle than I heard the strains of "Shelley's Blues," a catchy Mike Nesmith tune covered long ago by Linda Ronstadt. It made my spirits soar and, before I realized it, I had stopped a dumpy shopper, pointed upward at the invisible music in the air and said, "Michael Nesmith. Linda Ronstadt covered it." The unknown shopper stopped receiving wish-list directions on her cell phone long enough to give me a look that said, "Caustic drain cleaners. Aisle seven. Drink up." I snapped out of my reverie (it is unhealthy to have soaring spirits for more than ten seconds) and moved on to the alcoholics aisle. This is where you can find about fifteen different mineral waters, each designed to make you think you're having fun with an adult beverage when, in truth, you are not. I chose a couple of 4-packs of single serving Perrier with lime, completed my shopping and left for home.
Once home, I unloaded the groceries, put out the new bird-feeder and fresh birdseed, de-pooped the yard and started the laundry. I cleaned the catbox, put water in the birdbath and exterminated an ant colony. Then I trimmed ivy, swept the patio, put out the garbage, watered the flowers, beat the doormats and finished and folded the laundry.
I will shower now and go for a solitary ride in the country sipping my now-cold Perrier with lime. I shall call upon the acting skills honed in my massage sessions and I will act as though I am having fun.
© 2001 by the beastmaster