CROSSROADS TO SOMEWHERE: An Update on Our Elusive ‘O-bah-keh-san’

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WIMPY1By W.T. WIMPY HIROTO

Admittedly there are “Os” more famous than my ubiquitous one. Oprah would head the list, followed by Obama, and then there’s O’Hara, the Scarlet. But if you ask me, they all pale in comparison to my “Oh-bah-keh-san.” [If you wish, go ahead and include OJ. Loser.]

It’s been two months since CR2S last gave a rundown of “O” visitations. Although there have been reader inquiries regarding her absence, it was a surprise that I’ve been so lax – forgetful – guilty – of such a blatant oversight. Let’s rectify the lapse. Like Joe Friday, once a sergeant, it’s only the facts:

During September there were nine tap-tap episodes, four times partnered with a following single telephone ring; and one stand-alone ring without a knock. There was a stretch of 11 straight mornings in mid-month when there was complete silence on all fronts. An oddity was that five interruptions were of the two-tap variety, also one on the wall rather than door.

The biggest surprise was two visits occurring before midnight: an 11:54 telephone ring and an 11:30 knocking; rather cheeky, let alone daring, considering I was wide awake when both occurred. [For the benefit of super sleuths, my land-line lacks caller ID and call waiting. I doubt either feature would identify the phantom caller, anyway.]

As far as October is concerned, to date there have been 12 intrusions (one just this morning, Monday), including two of the telephone kind. There was an unusual four-knocker plus a three; all others are now of the two-tap variety. The earliest was at 1:24 a.m. but the one just last Thursday set a record for lateness, an unusually belated 6:14.

No one wanders the corridors after 6 p.m. but at 6:14 in the a.m., many residents are up if not about; meaning there’s a chance a live neighbor could be strolling by my door when a knock-knock episode occurs; that is if “O” was in a playful mood and decided to frighten the poor soul.

The most unusual happenstance this month was the four-knocker that happened on the *10th, a Thursday. Per habit I turn on the light and jot down the exact time, 2:46 a.m. As I’m making note on my writing pad, there is a three-knocker at 2:48! A mere two minutes later! [*This incident was so surprising and out of the norm that later I had to once again scan the hallway security tape. I knew it would be blank, that only a dark and empty corridor would be shown, but I just had to verify with my own two eyes one more time.]

So there you go, folks. You’ve been brought up to date by your devoted reporter, who remains dumbfounded but ever alert. The Mystery of Boyle Avenue, which began exactly two years ago, continues unabated and unsolved. And it doesn’t appear to be headed for any sort of conclusion any time soon. If you decide to join the ranks of the skeptics, I hold no grudge and understand. The rest of us will fight on, so to speak.

= * =

The minute two years is mentioned, I’m immediately reminded of another CR2S nemesis. One that is accompanied by bells and whistles of a different sort: the DMV.

Two years ago I began an odyssey that joined me at the hip with downtrodden illegal aliens: seeking a driver’s license. After a debilitating but noble three-month battle, WTH emerged scathed and scarred but with that precious piece of plastic in victory. Temporarily, it turned out. Last year, for reasons that have never been made clear, CR2S was once again directed to renew. Keep in mind, please, this is after less than one year has passed.

Because of a variety of unbelievable mishaps and misdemeanors, I had to suffer through more slights and indignities in order to regain the privilege of driving our potholed streets. In March. Of 2013. In case you’re not paying attention, that’s this year!

So guess what I just received in the mail? Yup, how right you are! Another renewal notice! After only seven months have lapsed! Even before I could give birth, fercryinoutloud!

“During your visit at DMV, you are required to: Pay a renewal fee; take a written test; take a vision test; have your thumb print and photo taken.” It says nothing about cruel and unusual punishment.

Three times in less than two years. I just talked to a senior fellow who just got his renewal — through the mail — without an ounce of trouble. Another friend familiar with my dilemma chuckles while relating he can’t recall the last time he’s ever been in a Department of Motor Vehicles office, let alone taken any sort of exam. And he’s over 90 friggin’ years old!

But, no, I’m not going to allow this experience to roil my mind, ulcerate my innards and turn me into a communist. LG and QL will continue to be my credo: Life’s Good and Quality Living are a daily double to cherish and to live by.

W.T. Wimpy Hiroto can be reached at [email protected] Opinions expressed in this column are not necessarily those of The Rafu Shimpo.

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