Sunday, June 26, 2005

From: Snook (The Elder) at Home

Had trouble sleeping tonight, so decided to make some use of my time: do some reading over a cup of warm milk, smoke a cigarette. Having adjusted my cup reasonably with whisky I hoisted the brew into the microwave, muffling the appliance’s periodic bleepings with my housecoat [1] (Lenore still doing her stint of sleeping not too far away). To forestall those beeps-in-quick-succession indicating completion of the nuclear assault upon my stoneware, I tapped the open button smartly at the last second. The door flung open, and was not quite as loud in so doing as the beeps themselves would’ve been. Now—and mind you that I hadn’t even had any of the fortified concoction yet—no sooner did I take hold of the mug (not by the handle, obviously [2]) than the damn thing shot-up on its own, and struck the microwave door, spilling itself everybloodywhere.

Likely I am alone in feeling this, but there is nothing to me so anticlimactic as a spill of the magnitude that this one was of, with no satisfying crescendo of bursting glass (or in this case, cheapish Japanese ceramic material). The mug made more noise bouncing off the multitude of things it bounced off of (before it finally came to a sort of swirling halt—and that not after it had rattled in place for a goodish while) then it would have if it had just smashed itself to bits at the outset.

In any case, while I was perhaps spared the annoyance of having to pull shards of coffee mug from under my fingernails the next couple of days, a fairish amount of bourbon and milk was spilled all over my benooked-and-crannied kitchen floor. It should be said that I did not cry. I did, however, fly into an apocryphal rage and woke Lenore up, who grumbled audibly about spirits and unsteady hands the next ten minutes. And I had only limited success keeping the cat Thomas away from the various toxified puddles before I’d got to them with my mop—and she was, then, distinctly unsteady upon her pins. I spent the next hour or so pretending to read, but thought only of this—clumsiness, the family curse—and drinking too much warm-milkless bourbon.

One plus: warm milk (and perhaps cold milk, or even tepid milk too—I haven’t yet tested these scenarios, but needless to say by hook or by crook I will) seems to have quite an excellent bleaching effect upon badly stained linoleum countertops. Not so nice, though, upon softwood floorboards.

[1] I’m quite adept at this, and am known—to a hardcore of appliance salesmen and sundry other aficionado—as “Signor Micro-Ondo, Terror of the Beeping Bull.”
[2] Which neither I nor, I strongly suspect, 90% of the mug-bearing public ever uses.