Thursday, April 10, 2008

Friday's Follies

The Gene Pool Could Use a Little Chlorine

Here, there, and everywhere: Years ago I went to a conference in San Francisco. The conference ended about 10 a.m. and I’d made flight reservations for 5 p.m. so I could see some of the tourist attractions. The Hilton had a pen for storing luggage. Apparently I’m not the only visitor who needed storage. A fertility conference followed ours and early arriving doctors had stored theirs and also did some sightseeing.

With bags safely stored I visited, had lunch, walked the waterfront, and returned to pick up my bags and head to the airport. At home Mrs. Dr. Forgot opened my luggage and opined as to why my bag was filled with ladies undergarments and “dirty pictures.” I was confused until I picked up notes (not mine) for a lecture on “Human Fertility Among Pre-menstrual Asian Women.”

I phoned the hotel and the doctor who was to have given the lecture the following day was in a panic looking for his notes. I took his bag to the local Hilton and it was delivered by courier in time. All’s well that ends well. That had been my best travel story until now.

Friends, neighbors, and friends of neighbors: I live across the street from Bob and Sally, the world’s best neighbors. They watch the house, feed the cat, and bring over fresh fruit from Bob’s fruit trees. They have friends, Charlie and Jeannie from Hurricane, UT who drove to their house then caught a flight to Kalamazoo, or Tippecanoe, or Timbuktu. Upon their return Charlie exclaimed how fortunate he was to have gotten his bags among the first to be regurgitated by the baggage monster at the carousel.

Good flight. Bad after flight: After a 14-hour day they finally arrived home in Hurricane to find their phone with a dozen irate messages from the same person - the one whose bag looked exactly like Charlie’s and who was at the hotel without appropriate attire for his breakfast speech the following morning. Charlie is what we used to describe as a mild-mannered man. His new wardrobe-less friend’s demeanor sat somewhere between the average inflictor of pain in the Third Reich and Osama bin Laden’s enforcers.

The voice on the phone demanded that Charlie immediately drive back to Las Vegas to return the bag. Charlie explained that Hurricane, UT was nearly a 3 hour drive from Las Vegas and although his Hybrid Prius sipped gas at about 50 mpg, he was exhausted and in fact the drive would be unsafe this time of night. Was a fresh shirt more important than life and limb? “Yes,” came the reply. “Drink some coffee and get your butt to Vegas.”

Jeannie then reminded Charlie that a shuttle left St. George (a mere hour’s drive from Hurricane) at 5:00 a.m. So they caught a few zees and at 4:00 the next morning drove in the dark to St. George and discovered the shuttle driver to be most accommodating, especially after Charlie offered a little grease to the palm. Once the suitcase was aboard and en route Charlie phoned Mr. Nasty to advise him. The snarly response was something to the effect that, “It damn well better get here on time,” and “You’re gonna pay my cab fare to and from the airport.” Bag delivered. Mr. Nasty off to his breakfast meeting.

Mr. Nasty sounds like the kind of guy who would off his parents and plead for mercy because he’s an orphan. Charlie, on the other hand, has much more patience and caring for his fellow man than most. Call me Mr. Lucky – living across the street from the world’s best neighbors and having met the Prince of Hurricane, UT.

A little blogging music Maestro… Duane Eddy’s, “40 Miles of Bad Road.”

Dr. Forgot

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