By Alan Sorensen
I had a couple of requests this week from people around town for specific comments in this week's column.
While awaiting my turn to get stabbed at the Red Cross blood drive Monday, the volunteer at the juice station said she wanted to hear more about Uncle Russ.
Well, let's just say that Russ has acquiesced to my wishes and allowed the flies to stay on the walls (except around the toilet paper dispenser and over the stove). He's pretty well cleaned up the house and fixed the vacuum to the extent that it now sucks at least a little.
Russ also wiped the dust from the TV set in the living room, but that just got the rest of the dust in the house fighting over which dust among it would assume that revered position. That was OK with me, though, because dust on the TV screen tends to cut down the glare from the windows in daylight.
I don't know if I mentioned before that he fixed my bathroom light switch and the bathroom faucet. They didn't entail any major purchases, so we didn't bother to apply to the city for any building permits. Hope we don't get in any trouble, for that.
My car is white, again, and we can see the floor boards, both back and front seats. Russel also washed down the dash and the insides of all six windows, pulled the trash from under the seats, and emptied the trunk of all extraneous materials.
Russel's also managed to gain a lot of weight and much of his health (he suffered from some kind of allergic reaction to living on the coast for 25 years) since returning to Havre.
That pretty much covers the news on the Russel front, except that he told me this morning that he plans to get the lawn mower functioning so I can mow the lawn. Yeah, right. (Just a reminder, Russel's my kids' uncle, not mine.)
Then on Tuesday, I got an anonymous letter from "A faithful H.D.N. reader" advising me to lose weight. "Greetings!" the letter said. "You write well, as though you're a bright guy. But c'mon! 290 pounds?"
(Russel isn't the only one to gain weight since he arrived in town.)
The writer urged me to see a doctor and get on a regimen to lose weight. The upside, the writer said, was that I'd be glad I did " and live longer."
Can a person live longer and still be glad? What do I have to look forward to? Russel will be moving out once he gets his health back and finds a job. Without some else in the house, I don't stand a chance against the advancement of the sugar ants, flies and dust. And then there's the yard. It's enough to stress out even a skinny guy.
In the meantime, my job pretty well tuckers me out before I get home in the evening. My plans for a lengthy jog or laps at the city pool are set aside so I can take a nap before going to bed.
I did manage to get out to Beaver Creek last Saturday and cover the 6.2 mile course. It was nearly all down hill and I walked most of it, but I did get to the finish line and survive. I even had enough energy left to eat the three tacos they rewarded us 20 or so runners with down by the creek. I very nearly didn't make it back up the hill to my car.
The result of my endeavor was walking like an octogenarian for a few days after. (I gained a few pounds instead of losing. Even giving up a pint [pound] of blood Monday only raised the needle on my scale. What's a guy to do?)
I recently discovered a new form exercise, though, that I may even be able to do in my sleep horseshoes. I played a little a couple of weeks ago and it can be addicting. One ringer's all it takes.
Another anonymous person, I'll call him BMW, gave me a pile of old Havre papers for reference for future columns. Makes it a little difficult to decide how best to spend my weekend jogging, swimming, horseshoe tossing, mowing, reading, eating. Still not smoking (yet).