Me and Rodney — no respect
Just like that Rodney Dangerfield guy, I can’t get any respect! I do not exaggerate when I tell you that it’s been well over 50 years since I have gotten even the tiniest bit of respect. I mean no respect. It’s like I was just a common man or something like that.
Even way back in high school, I would go east and respect would go west. You wouldn’t suspect it now because to you, I’m a big important writer guy, but I almost didn’t graduate from high school. It wasn’t my fault either.
I was a model student in my high school. I was like the B.M.O.C. Sure I got sent to the dean’s office a time or two, but that wasn’t my fault either. I think the dean must have had something against me or he was jealous of my sheer good looks because he told me that if I get sent to his office one more time than he was going to kick me out of school. I thought, “Blaa-blaa-blaa.”
Well, it wasn’t a week later when Mrs. Weedikind (my English teacher) sent me to the dean’s office for writing stupid stories when I was supposed to be writing a speech. Now that I’m a big time writer guy, everybody knows I don’t write stupid stories. So, I didn’t go to the dean’s office and went to smoke in the bathroom instead.
How was I supposed to know the dean would walk into the room and catch me? You know that guy dragged me down the hall by my hair? That wasn’t cool at all, but he didn’t throw me out. I told you I wasn’t just a common guy. The damn dean was just a bag of wind and I had him up against a wall. He told me so in his own words.
After he made me stand on one of the little squares out in the hall, he pulled me in and said, “Donald, I’m going to let you graduate. You see, I looked at your grade school file and the principal there made a note of your age. He says that if you had one more month you could have legally driven to grade school, so he pushed you out to me in high school. Now I have to do the same.”
Ha, I thought, “I’ve got him outsmarted!” Then the dean says, “Don, you’re going to be 21 years old in a week or two and we can’t have a boy that old as a high school student. The school board is afraid you will want to date the freshman girls, and that’s against the law.” Well I say, “Gee Mr. Dean, I don’t care because no one will ever know that I was 21 when I got out of high school.” I chuckled to myself!
So, a couple of months later, I was in the army. About the third day there, some Colonel gave me a jeep with a radio bolted onto it and told me to drive it up onto a big helicopter. The helicopter dumped me off at a place called Pleku. The radio never worked but I didn’t know how to use it anyway. Two years, one month, and seven days later, I left the jeep there and went home.
OK, time passes and I’m doing volunteer work down at the creek, doing something they call creek restoration. There’s a bunch of piles of brush to be burned, so I start lighting them with a big tank of propane and a big long torch. Next thing I know, the whole dam creekside is on fire and there are helicopters dropping water on it. I know you won’t believe it, but I swear to God that the pilot of that helicopter was the same guy that gave me the damn radio that didn’t work way back when I was in Vietnam.
Now if you think that’s a little farfetched, consider this. OK, yesterday my wife tells me she’s going to Home Depot, and I was a little concerned when she didn’t come home. Now today I see her picture on the Facebook and she is in New Orleans with her sisters. She looks like she’s having a lot of fun too! I must have forgotten she was going.
She’s only been gone one day and the sink’s already full of dirty dishes. I’m going to make the best of this situation by writing a column about the survival of a man while his wife is gallivanting around the world. Oh… I already did that last time she was traveling. Anyway, I have to go to the store to buy paper plates and plastic spoons. I’m completely out of Fruity Pebbles, so I’ll have to try to find them too.
A respectful wife would have bought me some damn Fruity Pebbles before she left. So here I am, out of clean plates and spoons, no Fruity Pebbles, and to top it off, the creek restoration guys won’t let me play with the torch any more. The people on Facebook made fun of me for lighting a forest fire. The comment about the fire that hurt the most came from Linda Dejarnett Springer, a writer lady for the newspaper, who said, “I knew it was you!”
See what I mean? No respect.