I've gone and done it again. People are mad at me. Worse than that, someone threatened my life as a result of my presentation to Sunshine Club last Thursday. The threat wasn't said to me directly but was whispered resolutely to someone in the audience. As if that singular mention of ill intent was not enough, the malcontent told my very own mama, who she knew would deliver the message to me. After my talk when I still reeled from speaker's high, my mama said, "Charlotte says she's going to kill you."
The trouble began when I briefly alluded to the state of affairs at Rotary Club in my address to Sunshine Club. I said something or other to the Sunshiners about how the Rotarians are all business; a complimentary statement of fact in my opinion. I've heard, though, that some folks don't see it that way.
Then, immediately following my talk, Charlotte's neighbor, Miss Sarah, approached me with a glowing smile, which I took as a good sign. She, however, reprimanded me, because she knows Charlotte's child I referred to by the monogram, LDL, and also affectionately as Little Miss Bad Cholesterol. Little Miss Bad Cholesterol, I told my audience, sneaks into my pantry and eats all of my chocolate chips, then brings me the crumpled package and complains that it's empty. I eat up the quick wit of that LDL like a fried Twinkie on a stick, all sweet and greasy and slick.
I nodded and answered, "Yes, ma'am," in response to Miss Sarah's description of LDL as a healthy dose of good graces. While I thought it interesting how my fried Twinkie is the apple of Miss Sarah's eye, I also thought no lasting harm was done.
That was before I found out Charlotte intended to do me harm. But she's making a big deal out of nothing. What set her off was a well-meaning woman at the table next to hers who only desired to commiserate on the human condition and their shared suffering. Following the conclusion of my presentation, she said to Charlotte, "I'm glad I'm not the only one who has roaches."
"I can't believe she told that story," snapped Charlotte. And that's when she levied the threat against my life.
The account I shared with Sunshine Club isn't as bad as Charlotte makes it out to be, except that it triggered Miss Sarah's reproof of me and it led to Charlotte wanting to permanently maim me. All I said was that one day while visiting my house Miss Bad Cholesterol pointed out a dead roach on the floor. While I swept up the roach, she proceeded to tell me that they have more roaches at her house than I do. Not only that, but precious LDL also assured me that her family wins the roach collecting contest since their roaches are both greater in number than mine and unmistakably alive.
Charlotte took issue with the public roach disclosure and pledged to relieve me of my life. To circumvent a poor outcome, I offer the following update to my yarn:
In the spirit of good sportsmanship, Charlotte long since withdrew from the roach contest. She has no roaches, and, if you care, she has no mice, either. Therefore, I, myself, in my own house, am winning all vermin contests, which, without a worthy competitor, are not very challenging.
As for my dear Rotarian friends and Miss Sarah, trust me when I say, I never meant any harm.
(Lucy Adams is the author of Tuck Your Skirt in Your Panties and Run. She lives in Thomson. E-mail Lucy at firstname.lastname@example.org and visit her Web site, www.IfMama.com.)