On a recent Saturday afternoon, Mary Lou had the TV tuned to CNN.
I noticed a woman personality of the network and she was wearing an orange blouse.
Her makeup looked orange, too, like Donald Trump although not nearly as foul-featured.
I commented to that her outfit and makeup was rather odd, unless it was on purpose with Halloween fast approaching.
“TV types tend to wear more colourful clothing,” M.L. said. “Most people wear darker colours of blue, black and brown.”
Then her eyes lit on me.
I was outfitted in a bright red wool overshirt, a wool sweater with horizontal stripes of maroon, yellow, green and two shades of blue, a muted sky colour and navy. My chinos were tan/olive and my footwear was black.
“Except for freaks like you,” she said.
I refrained from a comeback because I knew she was kidding(?).
Besides, over the years spent at newspapers as a reporter and editor, I have been called a lot worse than “freak.”
A prominent businessman referred to me as an “a—hole” when I was managing editor of The Trentonian. The moniker of “sarcastic bastard” was flung at me by a colleague at the Intelligencer, “moron” was invoked more times than a maple tree has leaves and various other epithets were applied to me that cannot to be listed in this newspaper. (I would, but control differs.)
There are times when I think Quinte the Jack Russell Terrorist is held in higher regard in our household.
The other day I was out emptying flower pots and cutting some wood to add fireplace cheer to those long, dark winter nights.
Good work, but I did not remove my shoes and walked around in the kitchen while inadvertently leaving a trail of mud.
The unfortunate incident was, of course, remarked upon. And it was just my luck that while I was outside, M.L. had cleaned the floor.
The reaction was a familiar refrain, and for the first few times after being chastised, I do remember to remove the shoes and put on the slippers. (Bear with me, I am getting to the Terrorist.)
But then the words fade and I forget and track in dirt again, which, of course, results in the rebuke – round and round we go like a dog chasing its tail.
Which provides me with a perfect introduction to Quinte.
Raining outside? Feet wet? No problem, let Quinte in. Oh, sure, M.L. will admonish said dog with “Feet, feet” and then proceed to use a towel on Quinte’s paws. But no such courtesy is extended to me, rather I am expected to change footwear ON MY OWN.
Another thing. Quinte gets one of those stuffed squeaky pigs or groundhogs and mortally wounds the thing in half an hour, leaving the entrails of the unfortunately eviscerated animal all over the living room.
This does not result in a scolding from M.L. If I did it, well, you can imagine the reaction.
Is it too much to ask that I be treated like a dog?