Monday, July 28, 2014





A morsel of pity is apparently too much to ask


March 06. 2014 2:56PM


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If you happen to reside on the West Side, you may have heard cheering in the streets this past weekend, and, possibly, a parade. The celebration? I lost my voice. It left somewhere between me screaming inane and useless directives at my son during wrestling districts (i.e.: “Just DO it, for God’s sake”), and screaming at my husband after I fell into the toilet, because putting the toilet seat down “just takes a lot of energy.”


My voice, like my broken spirit, flew away


When your gift to society is a big, fat mouth, everyone thinks laryngitis is soooo hilarious. My daughter called to chat and laughed her way through a one-sided conversation. “I waited more than 20 years for this day, and now that it’s here, I’m not there to enjoy it. Can you call me later so I can talk some more and have you do nothing but listen?”


I squeaked, “How about I call our insurance company instead and remove you from our policy, college girl? Wouldn’t THAT be a hoot?” I think all she heard was: “rasp-rasp-squeak.”


My younger son is celebrating the silence. He suggested God finally invented a mute button for humans and has used it on me. He may have even said: “Praise Jesus,” but I couldn’t quite hear him because as soon as he saw my eyes turn black, he ran away.


My body aches; my eyeballs hurt; my ears throb; my throat feels like the location for the battle of The Jets vs. The Sharks. And no one in this house cares one bit. Not even the dog, who is himself on his last paw. The only sympathy I can garner is from my 87-year-old father, who can’t decipher my words anyway because his hearing aid is on the fritz. I must sound like this all the time to his AARP ears.


I decided I would take care of myself. I know what I need better than the ingrates of my loins, and it’s my mother’s chicken soup. I forced my son to make a grocery run for me. I wrote a detailed list, punctuated with aisle numbers and shelf locations for him, because … I know him.


I could’ve saved the brain aerobics and ink. He called seven times. The biggest source of confusion was this directive: “One whole chicken, cut up.” It stymied him.


He came home and declared: “Mom, I TOTALLY thought you were playing a prank on me by giving me a list of groceries that didn’t exist. I couldn’t find ANYTHING!”


And by “didn’t exist” he meant zucchini must be an exotic item found only in a forest, Parmesan cheese is made from cows in Norway, and celery simply ceases to grow on this continent, apparently. I ended up with a bag of chicken entrails. (If I gave him a list that said Budweiser and beef jerky, you can bet your bottom dollar he would locate those babies with laser accuracy.)


I still can’t talk, and I’m moody and cranky, and no one loves me. Everyone is whispering at me, which makes me want to throw staplers and library books at them.


But wait. I hear some gasping and words such as “help me” and “tissues” bathed in sandpaper sound effects. OH! My poor husband is getting sick. That’s sad.


I hope I remember to put the toilet seat up. Or down.


Laryngitis makes me bitter and forgetful.




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