7:31 AM and 5:15 PM mark the times the sun rises and sets in Ashland, Oregon, today, Sunday, January 22nd. It’s 30 degrees F out, and feels like it. There are some days when the temperature doesn’t feel as cold (or as warm) as it’s supposed to be. That whole index and wind chill thing, I suppose. Today, though, felt 30 when we were out.
Yes, we were ninja shopping again, hunting fresh produce for soups, smoothies, and salads. My wife always times these things because experts say we should be in and out at the speed of sound because that confuses COVID-19. When people zoom by, COVID-19 reacts, “What was that? Someone there? Hello?” Then it forgets what it was doing and walks off muttering to itself, “I know I heard something. I know something was there.” Yes, COVID-19 is becoming old news.
I found myself humming “Days Like This” by Van Morrison. The song came out in 1995 but sounds like it’s from the 1960s. That makes sense because Van based it on the 1961 song, “Mama Said”, which was a hit for the Shirelles. I don’t know if I knew that before and had forgotten but Wikipedia claims it’s the truth, so it must be.
It was a day like this. My wife likes to be at the store at the beginning of time or the vulnerable hours, whichever comes first. I dislike shopping at the vulnerable hours, objecting to that expression, which is shorthand for “hour set aside for vulnerable and elderly people to go shopping”. To avoid the term, I tell myself we’re going at victory hour — you know, vee for vulnerable, vee for victory. I don’t want to call it the vee hours because there was a television show (and maybe a movie) called “Vee” about alien visitors. I don’t want to think of myself as a vee, in case I turn out to be a visiting alien the next time that I see a doctor. (Doctor: “It appears that you’re an alien.” Me, looking around, “Whooo, meee?”) Don’t mock me; my body is constantly revealing new information. Like, as my hair has thinned, I’ve noticed what appears to be a treasure map on my scalp. It could also be where a dead body is buried, so I’m not going to check it out, just to be safe.
On a side note, I had a special moment today. I went into the bathroom to do some business and not one of my three cats showed up to supervise, even though they’re all in the house and awake (because I saw them watching me on the way to the bathroom). Although I was first surprised, then hurt (“Don’t they care any more?”), I was then delighted to be in on the can alone. I so enjoyed it, I lost track of what I was doing and ended up wondering if I should paint the baseboards, of it they’ll just come clean with Mr. Clean Magic Erasers. Upon exited the restroom, I discovered one of my cats waiting for me. Looking at me, he said, “I would have come in, but it stinks in there.” He wasn’t smiling. (He sort of looked like Abe Vigoda as Fish on “Barney Miller”.) Then I encountered the other two cats waiting in the hall. They said, “He’s right, it stinks in there. You should have that checked out.” Like they know what they’re talking about. They’re cats. They can’t even open a can or use a spoon.
For the record, we were in the store for nineteen minutes and spent $115.10. That works out to $6.06 a minute. 2021 is gonna be an expensive year. I’m glad that we weren’t in there an hour.
Is there a song called, “Years Like This?”
Be positive, test negative, wear a mask, and get vaccinated. Here’s the music. Listen to it while I go get some coffee. I need it.