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Death on wheels

It's been a few months of hard lessons for me.

First, Dad and HealthLink (which, by the way, has still not happened).

Now, I've discovered my wife wants to kill me.

It all started with a simple question: "Why don't you get rollerblades?"

What? Rollerblades? Me?

Free Willy on wheels was the first thing that popped into my mind.

But there we were Sunday, driving around Augusta looking at these death traps on four in-line wheels.

Of course, Miriam was discussing them in the most positive terms: I could wear them when we walk along the greenway in North Augusta and coast part of the way. Then she wouldn't have to listen to me whine about exercise. I guess my screams of out-of-control agony would be much more comforting.

Anyway, our search ended in the Super Wal-Mart with me sitting on the floor trying them on. We bought them, of course, and my wife said the strangest thing: "Jaybo (she calls me Jaybo) got a toy! Aren't you happy?"

Now, I could equate the rollerblades to socks on Chirstmas morning: Yes, it's a gift, but only in the most technical terms. But rollerblades as a toy goes even deeper. It's the equivalent of telling your child that you've bought them a pet -- a pet grizzly bear that'll tear you apart.

To protect myself, we also picked up a set of knee, wrist and elbow pads. Very large protective pads. I asked if we could also buy a couple of pillows to strap to my body, but those would have apparently made me look silly.

Instead, I resembled a gangly, lumpy giraffe on eight wheels. But I never fell -- even after I lost all feeling below the knee in both legs. I think I may have enjoyed it, but I'll know more when the feeling returns to my feet.

I did learn a few important things. First, rocks in the middle of paved paths are a rollerblader's worst enemy. A wife almost laughing too hard to catch you when you are out of control is a close second. And, finally, people on the greenway are very friendly and smiling.

Or maybe they were just laughing at me.

It took us a while -- much longer than I had planned -- but this week's Mirror includes the first batch of recipes from local folks. I've always known McDuffie County had some of the best cooks around -- one look at me and no one questions my food authority -- and we are proud to showcase some of their favorite recipes. Thanks to Luci Linnenkohl for her desserts and casseroles this week.

But I know there are others out there, and I want to hear from you. Please share your favorites with McDuffie County. (And any samples are greatly appreciated also.) You can e-mail them to; mail them to PO Box 1087, Thomson, GA 30824 or drop them by our office in Magnolia Center.

We'll run them periodically on Page 2A -- the same place you'll find them today.

Web posted on Thursday, March 25, 2004

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