Wrong Turn

The other day I went out for a walk, and since I’m living in a new neighborhood, I wasn’t quite sure where I was going. When I started out, I looked around to make sure I could see some big landmarks, in case I got lost, I could find my way back. I wasn’t in much of a hurry so I didn’t bring a watch, and I didn’t have any plants to be back by certain time.

I didn’t really notice when it happened, but I looked up and instead of being surrounded by city type stuff like 7-11’s and liquor stores, I was surrounded by trees and rocks and dirt. I looked down and I noticed I was on some kind of trail, but not the kind of trail that you find in a national park. This wasn’t really maintained, it was more like a well-worn path, but it didn’t appear wide enough to have been made by humans.

I kept walking, as I said before I wasn’t in any kind of hurry. I looked around, and didn’t see any sign of houses or gas stations, but I figured if I kept walking, I’d eventually make my way out. That’s when I heard that strange, almost frightening noise behind me. It sounded almost, but not quite like a human voice that was experiencing some manner of distress.

Have you ever gone shopping, and ended up buying much more than you expected? I tend to do that sometimes, especially when I go shopping on a Saturday morning. It almost always happens when I go shopping before I make an effort to make something to eat. I may go to buy a box of yogurt, and end up with a frozen turkey or something. Once I went looking for a jar of instant coffee, and I came home with two dozen eggs. I’m not really sure why I bought so many eggs, but you never know when they are going to come in handy. It was at one of those “club” type stores, and you can buy the eggs in those big square things. I’m not sure what you call them, but they were cheap. They came out to be only about three cents per egg.

You can do a lot with eggs. Of course, you can make them fried or scrambled, or you can use them in a recipe to make waffles or some other product that you’d otherwise buy in a bakery. You could even drink them before your morning run if you were preparing for an exhibition fight to celebrate Independence Day. (In a fight you were expected to lose, no doubt).

I once saw this circus act where a guy juggled a bunch of eggs, among other things. He started off with regular balls, three of them. Then he increased to five, and then seven. (Have you ever wondered why professional jugglers almost always juggle an odd number of objects?) Then he switched to juggling other things, like the aforementioned eggs. Then he really impressed us by juggling some bowling balls, and some chainsaws. I’ve never tried to juggle chainsaws, but I imagine it could be pretty dangerous. You could easily get your arm hacked off if you aren’t careful. Or you might slip and fling a couple of chainsaws into the audience, and chop off a couple of heads. I’m not sure what a judge would do with you if that happened. I suppose they have some kind of insurance for that.

I have a friend that works in insurance, and he says his company has written some pretty interesting policies. Farmers buying insurance on cherry trees, movie producers buying insurance on actors that may slip out of rehab and back into drug addiction. Once a major television network bought coverage against some calamity that might cut into a live event they were televising. Insurance is an interesting business. No matter what you can think of happening, you can prepare for it, at least financially. You can even buy insurance against rain. If you own a jewelry store, you can buy insurance against rain on January first, and then have a huge sale, saying that if it rains on January first, all diamonds are only a dollar. That way if it rains, you’ll collect your insurance policy, and still make money by giving away diamonds for a dollar.

In Japan you can even buy insurance against getting a hole in one. It is a custom to have a big party and buy your friends all kinds of gifts and drinks if you get a hole in one, so you an buy a policy that will pay you about $10,000 if you happen to get a hole in one. Of course, you’d need to show all your receipts to prove you actually bought your buddies all the presents you are insuring yourself against.

I once was playing with this guy that could juggle a bunch of golf balls using only his golf clubs. Instead of catching the balls and then quickly flinging them back in the air, he used an eight iron and a driver, and bounced all the balls off the clubface. He could only do three at a time, but it was pretty impressive nonetheless.

When I turned around to see what was making that horrible noise, I had to do a double take. There was this guy standing behind me that was leaning his head back and shouting some weird noises toward the sky. I almost pulled out my cell phone and dialed 911, but then he noticed me and said he was a member of the bird watching club, and he was attempting to do some kind of birdcall. I don’t think it worked, because every time he tried, every creature within shouting distance would run away. But I got to give the guy credit for trying. As long as he was there, I asked him how to get back to the main road, and he pointed in the direction I was walking, so I continued on my way. And sure enough over the next rise I saw a huge sign for a 7-11. Naturally I bought a large slurpy before going back home. Maybe next time I’ll leave earlier so I can spend more time here before coming back to where I was before I started.


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