From under what rock did I emerge?

By Don Rush
By Don Rush

Columnist’s Note: this week I get to be a truck drivin’, pallet jackin’, paper movin’ man — and I hate it. But, there you go. Here’s a column from 2010. Enjoy.

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My dad always said, “Son, you should learn something new everyday.” I felt that was sound advice until I had about 15 years of living under my belt. And, by the time I graduated from college, I totally rejected  Dad’s obsession with learning.
Do the words “know,” “it,” and “all” mean anything to anybody?
There was a time in my life (from my fifteenth birthday until about yesterday) when I thought I was a pretty sharp cookie. Today, when I think back at that sentiment, I see I wasn’t that smart.
Cookies aren’t sharp. Furthermore, if you get a cookie that is sharp, report where you got it from to the police. Sharp cookies are dangerous and can hurt you if swallowed. I must be getting smarter, right?
So, I figured out about sharp cookies, but when will I remember to stop leaving my sunglasses on the dashboard of my pickup truck?
If you see me around town, or at one of our Coffee Club meetings, and I have red burn lines across the bridge of my nose and around my eyes, you’ll know I have yet to remember that leaving metal on a flat surface, in the hot sun makes said metal object hot, too. Putting hot metal on your face will do only two things: 1. Burn; 2. Hurt.
You’d think it would only take one time for that message to be burned-into my conscious. Then again, there is probably a reason I’m known as a blockhead.
And, while I know I didn’t just fall out of the turnip truck yesterday, when did bread tie colors start meaning something?
I always figured bread bakers just ordered a bunch of bread bag twisty-thingies and used whatever color was available. Now, I hear the color of the tie shows what day the bread was baked. And, if you break the color code, you’ll be able to buy only the “freshest” of loaves.
Was this a secret only to me or have I broken some unwritten rule by sharing information held sacred and known only to the highly clandestine and subterranean fraternal order of the bread cult-like brotherhood?
I went to an internet search engine  and typed in “bread tie color code” and surer than spit, 110,000 items were listed in .20 seconds. According to the ‘net . . . bread bakers use different colored ties for different days, this helps the bread stocker know when to take older bread off the shelves.
There you go. If they find me in a Wonderbread bag, you’ll know I wasn’t ‘sposed to rat out the bread makers.
Damn, it’s a bummer how right Dad was on this daily learning routine . . . well, that is not right, either. It is a bummer I didn’t listen to nor heed his words all these years.
Just today, I was doing one of my daily routines for the ladies of the front office, reading aloud their horoscope, and even then I learned something new. (No, it wasn’t what to expect or how to act for the day. In other words, no epiphany, astrologically speaking.) One of the gals is a Scorpio, so I’ll call her the Scorpion Queen.
In her horoscope was a line I had never heard — and I have heard/read a lot of the cliches that make their way to horoscopes — it ended with “a lick and a promise.”
While to me it sounded like a lewd and crude proposition, the gals of the front office said it is actually a relatively common phrase.
I am not saying I didn’t believe them, but I had to verify their knowledge. Again, to the ‘net and a search engine — 81,800 items matching my input of “a lick and a promise” popped up.
Here’s what I found. A lick and a promise is “a superficial effort made without care or enthusiasm. For example, ‘I haven’t time to do a good job of vacuuming, just enough for a lick and a promise.’ This expression is believed to allude to the quick lick a cat or other animal might give itself and a promise to do more or better at some future time.”
It’s kinda groovy learning  new stuff.
One year at Ortonville’s Creekfest, I learned that baby dragonflies live in the water. To move, they gulp in water, and shoosht it out their rear ends — sort of like jet propulsion. I also learned adult dragonflies eat adult skeeters and baby dragonflies eat baby skeeters.
Dragonflies rule!
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Dragonflies and moms rule, actually. Don’t forget to actually hug and hold your mom this weekend, if you can. If you cannot, hold her in your heart and thank her.

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