The time has come, the Walrus said,
To talk of many things:
Of shoes and ships and sealing-wax
Of cabbages and kings
And why the sea is boiling hot
And whether pigs have wings.
With due respect to Lewis Carroll, we will speak of none of the above but of some of lifes little irritants.
First, my e-mails spam guard has gone AWOL. I am inundated by an ever-increasing volume of unsolicited tripe.
For example: Hi A.C. Are you one of the 80 percent of women wearing the incorrect bra size?
Frankly, Gabrielle, my bra size is none of your business. Go away.
Also, Im not interested in receiving clear pictures of water on Mars.
Nor do I care for more details about how photographs of Kate Middletons bare bosom is causing worldwide titillation.
I believe my readers are not so naive as to fall for such an obvious scam as one offered me in a recent e-mail.
But just in case, be warned:
This message is coming to you with great depression due to my state of discomfort. I came down here to Bilbao, Spain with my family for a short vacation but unfortunately, we were mugged and robbed at the park of the hotel where we stayed. All cash, credit cards and cell phones were stolen off us but we still have our lives and passports.
Weve been to the embassy and the police here and they have done the best they can. Our flight leaves in less than 12 hours from now but we are having problems settling the hotel bills and the hotel manager wont let us leave until we settle the bills which is 1,950 Euro ($2450). I am contacting you to ask for a short loan which I will refund immediately I get my family back home safely. Let me know if you can help.
A very special Clyde
Like many of us who never liked our middle name, the late William C. Friday generally kept his a secret, according to C.D. Spangler, Fridays close friend and successor as president of the University of North Carolina.
Spangler, who spoke at Fridays memorial, said his great friend once explained, Every mule in western North Carolina is named Clyde.
Fridays mysterious C could just as easily have stood for Courage, Competence, Compassion, Common sense, as well as a host of other charter values found throughout the alphabet.
He was a rarity who cannot be over-praised.
Since this is Be Kind to Squirrels Week (reluctantly declared by me), Im reneging on my promise of no more squirrel stories. But this one, illustrating the compassionate nature of the state animal, is irresistible.
Linda Edmisten of Raleigh, writes that her dog, Jasper, has taken on the task of harassing the invading army of squirrels that are gobbling up the falling fruit from their four pecan trees.
One afternoon, Jasper was in such a frenzy of barking at the pecan thieves that Linda, fearing the neighbors were weary of the noise, ordered Jasper inside.
A little while later, she got into the car to run some errands.
There, carefully arranged on the drivers seat, were two ripe pecans, untouched and perfect, she said.
Now I am not trying to imply that the squirrels were grateful for the respite from that busybody dog that was driving them crazy, but one does wonder why they chose that time to hop through the open car window and leave such a desirable token and depart.
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