Going Coconuts

A Geezer’s Notebook, By Jim Foster

I’m sure one or two of you don’t consider Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader as the greatest source of practical knowledge in today’s world. Perhaps, although I can’t imagine why, some of you have never even heard of Uncle John and his collections of fascinating books.

If you are one of those unfortunates, I advise you to rush out to the nearest book store, purchase a copy, and assign it a place of honour in your home. I find the back of the toilet is probably the best location since you will be in there a few times a day, a few dozen if you are addicted to Mexican food and enjoy burning pain.

As an example of what you can learn in just one short reading session, I discovered this morning that drunken ants always fall over on their right side. I find that intriguing, always on their right side, never on the left? My golfing buddies fall every which way, although usually face-down and forward. In one particular case, forward and down a flight of stairs. Can you even begin to imagine how much that little titbit of seemingly useless information will benefit me as I go about my daily routine of boring my friends and annoying hapless strangers?

My wife, Mary, was a teacher for God alone knows how many years (let’s be kind and say it was one hell of a long time) and also a proud member of the Retired Teachers of Ontario. She confessed that not once did she, or any other member of their organization ever mention anything about ants, let alone that they are lushes and fall over a lot. It does make you wonder what sort of future their students will have if that kind of information wasn’t on the course of study. But enough about the shortsightedness of the Ministry of Education’s vision for the future of learning in our Province and on to more pressing things, ants and their drinking problems.

Just how did Uncle John find out about this shocking example of alcohol abuse in the insect world? To start with, where are they getting the stuff? Did you leave your beer bottles on the porch again? Your wife told you about that.

Ants can’t buy it at the LCBO without an age of majority card, unless the employees aren’t checking. When I was a youth, several weeks ago, there was always some bozo willing to buy you a jug as long as you had the money. Although I must say they were selective and rarely would make a purchase for a five-year-old unless the kid had the shakes; then, and only then, would allowances be made.

Surely Uncle John didn’t deliberately feed booze to an ant colony just to fill a space in his book. If so, someone should be reporting him to the police. As soon as I dry out, I will slip out to OPP Headquarters and have a little chat with the Commissioner.

I also learned today that 5% of Americans never make their beds. I’ve known for some time our neighbours to the south were a bit odd, but I didn’t think they were slovenly. We can forgive them for going around bombing everybody, but forgiveness can only go so far. I have had evil designs on Meg Ryan for years, but I may have to re-think that. I best peep through her bedroom window. If it’s messy and Tom Hank’s jockey shorts are lying on the floor, I’m afraid it’s over, Meg, over.

What else? In the 1500s, Queen Elizabeth the Wunth outlawed wife-beating after 10 p.m. and that was a good thing. What if the neighbours had to get up early in the morning to peasant, or whatever English persons did in those days?

All this, the ant business, the bed thing, and Liz’s thoughtfulness, is very interesting, but what did I learn that will benefit mankind? Coconut shells can absorb more impact than crash helmets. Can you see what a boon this is for the sports industry? Little Leroy wants to play hockey and you can’t afford to buy him an expensive helmet, I’ll bet you can afford a couple of bucks for a coconut. Maybe you could get one for yourself and join a league. Simply lop off the top and plop it on your head. There are even more advantages, especially for bald persons. It looks like hair. Not only that, coconuts are bio-degradable and so are you if you would walk around with a coconut on your head.

(Image Supplied)

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