As is the case every day of my life, today I accomplished more before noon than many people might get done all day.
I'm an army of one.
By eleven o'clock this morning, I was enjoying a vigorous work out in my home fitness center, which also doubles as Mr. Man's garage. Wearing my "Queen of the World" t-shirt and pumping away on the fitness contraption that rides like a mechanical bull, I was mentally patting myself on the back.
"I really am the Queen of the World," I thought. "I have already answered 14 emails, updated two websites, finished two email campaigns, wrote an article, did a load of laundry and went to the tanning bed. I am truly an amazing woman! If it weren't for things on high shelves, I wouldn't be at all opposed to a society where men were kept in cages as pets. Who needs 'em when chicks like me are around."
Whether it was the release of the mighty endorphins or the four cups of coffee and hand full of vitamins I had for breakfast, I was working that machine like I was in the National Finals Rodeo. At one point, I think I might have even slapped it a little.
I was invincible Sher, Queen of the World and tamer of the mighty fitness bull! Nothing could stop me! I figured after I finished with my work out, I would probably go outside and lift the car up over my head just because I could.
And then I saw it.
Right across the cement floor of my fitness center/garage sat the biggest, meanest, scariest looking insect I have ever seen in my entire forty-one years. It was huge. So huge in fact that it couldn't even be a natural bug. I knew immediately it must have come from the nuclear power plant were Mr. Man works. I'm guessing it hopped on his back bumper and held on with it's long, knife-like claws for the entire hour long ride. Either that or it just threw on a fake mustache and a hat and convinced Mr. Man it needed a ride.
I didn't know what to do. I was so terrified I couldn't make a noise. It was like one of those really bad nightmares where your dentist is chasing you with a GPS device he wants to implant on your uterus and you can't scream no matter how hard you try. As Tanner, the amazing four pound Yorkie was beside me, I pointed toward the nuclear bug in hopes that he'd spring into action and protect me.
Instead he grabbed a Sharpie and an old piece of cardboard and created a make shift sign. "Bet you wish I had a pair now, don't you Miss Let's Get Tanner Neutered?"
In the meantime the nuclear bug, who had by now found the stash of Jack Daniels Mr. Man doesn't think I know about, was changing the station on my garage stereo and sorting through a box of clothes I am taking to Goodwill. His tentacles were waving around all over the place and his eyes were glowing nuclear green.
Finally having found my voice I did what I always do when I am confronted with something that scares the crap out of me. I swore at it. Bad, bad words came flying out of my mouth like I was a profane Poet Laureate. I heard myself say words I didn't even know I knew and I'm not entirely sure I was using correctly. I questioned his heritage, I told him where I'd seen his Momma last night and I commented on the size of his Little Man.
He acted like he hadn't understood a word I'd said. I think it was the Jack Daniels.
I was running out of options. I couldn't squash this thing. It would be like trying to squash a cat. Besides, I don't wear shoes when I am riding the exercise bull and no way I was going to let any part of my skin touch this creature. I'd have to boil myself.
My only course of action was going to have to be hand to hand combat. I would have to fight like I'd never fought before in order to get Tanner and I to safety and to liberate the world from the scourge of nuclear insects. (As a Republican, I am required by law to use the word "liberate" at least twice a day.)
I spotted a broom lying against the wall and grabbed it before he could stop me. Meeting my challenge, he picked up the Swiffer I had carelessly left by the door that leads back into the house and stood his ground. In most situations, a Swiffer is better than a broom hands down. But when choosing a weapon, anyone knows the broom is the better choice.
The fight was on. I jabbed and he blocked. He jabbed and I blocked. We were like two swashbuckling pirates, except his three feet long antennae kept getting in the way. I battled the nuclear bug for what seemed like an eternity until finally I struck the fatal blow. A hard smack on top of his big old bug head and he fell slowly to the ground, Swiffer in one hand and nearly empty bottle of Jack in the other.
He's still out there. Or at least I hope he is. I'm too afraid to check. Every once in awhile I put my ear to the door to see if I can hear any movement, but all has been quiet. I couldn't pick him up to dispose of the body, so I did what I always do when I kill a bug. I covered it up with a Kleenex and left it for Mr. Man to throw away.
Hey, it's a really big Kleenex.
Copyright © 2004-2005, Sherri Bailey
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