CROSSROADS TO SOMEWHERE: Hot Weather/Cold Reality

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By W.T. Wimpy Hiroto
(First published in
The Rafu Shimpo on September 29, 2010.)

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Here it’s deadline for the week and I can’t think of anything to write about except the weather. Zounds! Triple digit temps were very rare this year, even the 90s, so we approach an Indian summer possibility as October looms.  Global warming, like tainted eggs, is a hard sell when the past months have been on such a cool side.

I guess normal people go to the beach, mountains, movie theatre or back yard in a heat wave. Me? I don’t think I’ve been out of the house the past four days except to pick up the morning newspaper. Although this past Saturday deserves special mention if only to note the unannounced arrival of two more visiting (evangelistic?) teams; a record three is one week!

In the middle of scrambled two with crisp bacon and sourdough toast, the tinkle of the doorbell intrudes. Peering through (always) drawn vertical dining room slats I see two middle-aged (40s) ladies. My surreptitious peering reveals no religious tracts in their free hand, but both are holding a colorful parasol seldom seen in this neck of the woods over their head. Whether I’m a closet recluse or simply discourteous matters not, I simply waited to hear the click of a closing front gate. I didn’t see any TV trucks nearby so I was pretty certain they didn’t appear on my porch with a $1 million publisher’s prize.

Pre-noon, with the a/c blowing  a cool refrain, there is an unfamiliar rap on the kitchen screen door. Deliveries, whether FedEx or Sparkletts, always drop off at front. As do deputy sheriffs, census takers and itinerant workers. It couldn’t be (son) Jeff as he always calls before dropping by or cells to announce his arrival at the locked door.  This time I peered out the window above the sink (also slatted for outside viewing only). Voila! Two young ladies this time, both carrying parasols identical to the ones the elderly pair before them had hoisted over their heads.  After two more less than energetic raps they departed and headed down the hill.  For an ever so brief moment I considered answering the door.  But, no, I would not succumb to youth or beauty.  I mean, you know.

That’s when a tinge of regret set in. I should’ve responded to the (second) interruption, if for no other reason than to ask about their sun blockers.  And compliment them on their dedication in such brutal weather.  Maybe offer a drink of ice water. Per chance one would have asked my opinion of an after life.

Life. Nothing but a series of shouldas and could’ves lately.

Except where dear ole Figueroa Tech is concerned. My newfound voodoo powers are beginning to scare the begeezus out of me.

Athletic Director Mike Garrett resigns to life as an asterisk and Reggie Bush becomes the first to ever forfeit a Heisman Trophy.

“It is my hope that this situation serves as a teachable moment to all involved,” lectured a righteous  former SC coach Pete Carroll from far away Seattle.

“I look forward to the future and winning more awards and championships…” declared Who Dat Reggie from far off New Orleans. And as if the aftermath required an exclamation point, his immediate future included a broken leg!

Tiger Woods misses a cut and any chance of winning the 2010 FedEx Cup. Who else did I have on my black list? Better yet, who do you want me to include?  At the rate I’m going, maybe the McCourts will hire me to solve their marital woes and the Dodgers’ roster shortcomings.  If President Obama needs my talents to restore his suddenly blemished record, he’d better hurry up. The line is forming to the left. And right. No one paid any attention when I advocated long ago that tea would eventually replace coffee as the liquid of choice. Kobe? Why would I want to help a port city in Japan?

Have you ever (wasted your time like me) giving thought to how short our attention span is these days?  BP and the Gulf oil eruption, a running story for six months, becomes archival as soon as a permanent cap is put in place. France is in upheaval, its citizenry protesting to keep the retirement age from being raised (it should be, but that comes from a prejudiced retiree); the White House can’t decide what to do in (or with) Pakistan; we find out Japan has a wonderful record with venerated centenarians because, well, they conveniently forget to record all deaths.  In some cases not even burying the deceased to avoid being counted.

Garnering little state attention is a move to require children to be age 5 by Sept. 1 before entering kindergarten. (California is one of the few states with a cutoff date later than the lst.)  I would guess my Rafu readers have a whole lot of worthy concerns before the educational plight of a four-year-old comes into the picture.  Well folks, CR2S was on the cusp way back when (as a late Saggitarian) I would’ve lost a year had I not been allowed into kindergarten early.

Can you but imagine what world catastrophes were averted by that small allowance? Admittedly I didn’t do much talking—then—but the thought of waiting  an additional year before starting school is unthinkable.  I mean, shoot, how would I have learned the difference between concentration and relocation?

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W.T. Wimpy Hiroto can be reached by e-mail. Opinions expressed in this column are not necessarily those of The Rafu Shimpo.

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