Progress Report 7

Brian J. Sullivan

Humpty Dumpty had a great fall. Well, I've had two; does that qualify me for fairy tale status? Or at least a passing mention in some book? Today while shopping at our local IGA store, I took another nasty fall in of all places, the "healthy" salad bar area. A rogue piece of lettuce delicately sliced into a thin strip appeared to be the culprit. Store investigators surmised that the end of my crutch compressed the juices out of the lettuce causing my crutches to slip out from under me and sent me crashing to the floor. Reeling in pain and disorientation, I am sure I saw maraschino cherries or some gross tofu thing flash before my eyes (or maybe that was the last thing I was looking at in the salad bar before I went blank).

I was being especially careful too, being several feet away from the bananas. I was on the lookout for any discarded banana peels. However no one warned me about the dangers of the salad bar. I must have been absent that day in school. Anyway, I survived, except for my bruised ego.

My feelings were also hurt when I learned that President Bush had not invited me to the White House to celebrate his 60th birthday. Maybe he'll invite me to his 61st.

Since I was on a roll, I thought that I would change the burned out kitchen light. I got smart and first checked the bottom of my crutches for any lettuce residue. In addition, I took the precaution to wipe down the kitchen chair I was to stand on. Once it was dry, I slid it directly under the kitchen light with the back pushed up tight against the stove. Then I took a deep breath and did a big one legged hop/jump from the floor to the chair seat using my crutches for balance as a tight rope walker uses a long balancing pole. The tricky part was to balance myself on one leg, reach up with both hands (one to unscrew the thumb screws holding the glass globe, and the other to catch it when it came loose) at the same time holding a new bulb, and with my fourth hand unscrewing the burned out bulb. Once all was screwed back in place, I considered simply jumping down, but the flashback of my last jump ended in my current injury which I was none to happy to repeat. Common sense prevailed. I sat down on the stove (yes I made sure it was off; how could you even think I wouldn't check?), slid to the chair and then to the floor. I gloated at my success. "Another job well done," I thought to myself as I flipped the light switch only to find that nothing happened. Apparently in my one legged juggling act, I had accidentally screwed the old burned out bulb back in! Dang it. I've been in the dark this long; I guess another day or so won't hurt. Besides, I don't want to be too tired out when I go down to the blood bank to sell my plasma. Secretly I've been going twice a week. I'm getting to meet all the local winos. You might say it's a cheap social club. Anyway, the money I receive is not much, but it helps pay for some fresh vegetables. This reminds me, I need to go to the store. I'm all out of lettuce.