A little bit of this… a little bit of that

I have come to realize that writing a weekly column is like priming a pump. Once you get going, the topics you want to write about gush at unstoppable rates.

Take ants for example. On the April 22 edition of NPR's Science Friday, or Sci Fri as it is affectionately called, one of the topics was ants. Did you know that they make up nearly two-thirds of the world's population of insects. I had no idea.

In the ant kingdom, males are anatomically incompetent, rendering an order completely run by females, who are superior in every sense of the word. Queen Nor of Jordan once said that women hold up half the world. In ant-ville, the females literally control everything.

The other day while I was on my powerwalk, I found a five dollar bill on the ground. A few years ago, I found $20 in a parking lot of a major bookstore. But have you noticed that you rarely find coins anymore?

When was the last time you found pennies, nickles, dimes or quarters on the ground, under the couch cushion or heard people jingling change in their pockets? I think it's a thing of the past in this age of debit and gift cards.

It seems that people don't want to be bothered with it. When I am in the checkout lane, I seem to be the only one who still picks through my wallet for the exact change.

A few weeks ago, I gave away my 38-year-old wedding dress. For years, I thought someone in the family would definitely want it. But I came to realize that it held little meaning to others. Besides, the once white tafeta had turned yellow and the sparkling sequins had become dingy.

I never imagined giving it away to hang alone on some unknown rack in a thrift store. I finally snapped out of that dreamlike state, folded it in half, loaded it into the trunk of my car where I had a half-dozen bags of clothing and then dropped it off at a church collection center.

I am hoping that maybe someone, somewhere can use it, but that's probably not the case either. I feel a tinge of sadness now, but I am glad I finally gave it away.

Last week, I put clear nail polish on my stockings to stop a run. While I tucked the sticky patch down under my foot where no one could see it, I chuckled over how tacky I can be.

Fear comes over me when I see young children walking to school alone early in the morning. Worrying about these youngsters who look to be barely six years old, I say a prayer for their safety.

My passport photo is so bad that I'm convinced I will be unrecognizable to the customs agents when I travel abroad.

I'm really expecting the agent to look at my passport and say, "This can't be you. You look much younger than the person in this photo?" Yes, that's what they will say (wink, wink).
 
A resident of Southeast South Dakota, Paula Damon is a national and state award-winning columnist. Her columns have won first-place in National Federation of Press Women, South Dakota Press Women and Iowa Press Women Communications Contests. In the 2009 and 2010 South Dakota Press Women Communications Contest, Paula's columns took first-place statewide. To contact Paula, email pauladamon@iw.net, follow her blog at www.my-story-your-story.blogspot.com and find her on Facebook.
2010© Paula Damon

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