Ben… A Recovering Idiot (who often relapses) Friend of many (or so he thinks) Foe of one, two or maybe a few (hundred) Grandfather of twelve (and not a bad one in the bunch) Father of six (that he's been notified of) Married for 38 long, arduous and worthwhile years (readers of The Book all agree it’s a miracle) Husband of one (which is fairly unusual for a Mormon) Jack of no trades (and master of none) Inventor (who’s not that successful but keeps the bills paid) Dodged certain death at least 5 (00 times) Broke 27 bones (and wondering which one will fail next) Missing only two fingers (and had just one lobotomy up to this point) Over the hill (and can’t remember if he was ever really on top) Legal owner of Michele and this blog (his favorite?...depends on the day)

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Friday morning I called my dentist about a problem I have with my mouth. It seems I’m always sticking my foot in it. He has been aware of it for some 45 years now since he’s also my brother. He’s a great dentist but told me he couldn’t help me.

I told him to hang on. In addition to that problem, the mouth was also hurting, even without the foot in it. He told me to come in and he’d have a look. I drove over to his home, picked him up, and hauled him to work. I figured if I did that, he’d give me a break on the bill.

We drove to work and he fixed my problem. The only unusual dental office aspect was as he worked on my upper gum, I got instantly nauseous. Without time to warn him or his assistant, I bolted out of the reclining chair and made a beeline for the sink. Did I say beeline? I meant flying leap.

Within five seconds of the initial warning that there was going to be a breakfast rejection, I was heaving my cookies to the surprise and laughter of the two onlookers in white coats. Brent was lucky he wasn’t changing into his janitor uniform and scrubbing down his office. Maybe that’s why he was so happy.

Brent fixed my mouth. My foot didn’t get near it for the next couple of days. The guy is a miracle worker.

I left his office and drove to a quick lube outfit and talked to the manager. The last time my wife had her oil changed, they left the cap off. When I discovered it several months later, the fill hole and threads on the cap had a good amount of dirt on them. The manager said he would give us another oil change at no charge.

Last night I said a couple of things that weren’t the wisest to my good wife. This told me that my brother hadn’t fixed the problem so I headed back in to give him some more business. I also had a cleaning scheduled. I took my wife’s van since it had some fresh clean oil in it.

The only problem was I was late so I cranked it up to 70. It was important I wasn’t late since Brent said he would buy me lunch before the cleaning. I headed down Taylor Flats Road, passing a few slow pokes when I idly noticed a semi-truck and a couple cars  heading toward me. As the truck went by, a formidable blast of wind hit my wife’s van. Immediately after, a good blast of hood hit my wife’s windshield. It sounded like a stick of dynamite went off at the same time my world turned dark and blank.

I don’t think the quick lube outfit latched the hood Friday.

I could see nothing except my speedometer reading 70. Sticking my head out the window, I noticed two cars whiz by. Pulling over, I snapped the above picture. The people I had previously passed were now passing me. I’m sure they all had smiles on their faces.

Since I was late for lunch, I pulled the hood down and climbed back in the captain’s chair. My world view was now full of cracks.

I pulled little shards of glass off my arms and face as I sped back up to make my lunch date. The faster I went, the more the multi-faceted windshield bent inward. I hit 50 and figured I better not exceed that number or there might be some more shards.

It was then that I noticed another dynamite explosion and my world went blank again. I stuck my head out the window and drove myself to the shoulder. This time I decided I better tie the uppity hood down. I perused the van interior for the bungee cords I had left in it previously. However, because my wife is more of a clean freak than a pack rat, there were no bungee cords.

I was getting a little frantic as my free lunch date was slipping away. Finally I found an emergency kit that my wife must have missed. There was a scrawny roll of duct tape in it that I hurriedly secured the troublemaker hood with.

I made it through Pasco and out on the interstate, careful to look straight ahead due to the fact that it was a little tough to observe the road through the thousands of cracks. I also looked straight ahead so as not to get distracted by all the laughing and pointing people that were passing me.

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I made it to Brent’s office. We drove HIS car to lunch and left my car in the parking lot.

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After lunch, a good dental cleaning and Brent’s admission that he could do nothing about my hoof and mouth disease, I headed home. Tomorrow is a day that I’m going to have to clear my calendar and find my wife another rig. I wonder if I can get anything on a trade-in?

I’m also planning on calling up the quick lube manager and see about getting some more free oil changes.