The Junction
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The Junction

Conversation with My Wife (179.4)

So the holidays are over and the catalogs are done? Not at all, there are POST-CHRISTMAS SALES!

I’m coming into the kitchen after getting the mail.

ME: So! Remember Dennett was ribbing me about getting so many old-fashioned catalogs, and why did we get so many? And I was going to tell her when it has been a week since the last one?

DEB: Uh-huh?

ME: (holding up catalog from Vermont Country Store) Resetting the counter. Again.

Why do we get so many catalogs? We encourage the S.O.B.s, of course. We bought Salmon Wellington and mushroom casserole from one of our online food companies; it was beautiful, it was delicious, it was enough for two meals, and it was 40 minutes in the oven with no cleanup worth mentioning.

Our Christmas dinner, in front of my beautiful wife. It’s not huge, but we don’t eat as much as we used to, anyway. And there’s another meal’s worth still in the fridge! We saved that for New Year’s Eve.

Plus it amuses us to make fun of the odd ones. Like companies that sell pajamas. For families. And their dogs.

Actual ad in an actual catalog for an actual product. Or set of products, I guess.

ME: Okay, so the whole family buys red pajamas. With drop seats. And their names over their butts. Including the dog.

DEB: “Mom, does my name make my butt look big?”

ME: “Not at all, Alexandria, you look fine. Just fine.” “How about me, Mom?” “Jo, you look awesome!”

DEB: T-shirt: “Which page of the Bible explains how you turn water into wine? Asking for a friend.”

ME: In 2020, I think more people were looking for ways to turn strange-smelling flour concoctions into sourdough loaves, but I imagine a good number were working on turning food scraps into vodka. Speaking of our favorite year: “CLASS OF 2020 — Senior Skip Day Champions”.

DEB: Hopefully, anyway! “My nickname is ‘Mom,’ but my full name is ‘MOM MOM MOM MOM’.” Or “AUNT DEBBIE AUNT DEBBIE AUNT DEBBIE” in the case of our grandniece.

ME: Is she worried about your hearing, or your attention span? “The chains on my mood swing just snapped. RUN.” A year ago, Debster, that could have been you, but you’ve mellowed in your retirement age.

DEB: I prefer this: “The proper term for ‘senior’ women should be QUEEN-AGERS.” Maybe Ann Litts would agree with me?

ME: You and Ann are rocking retirement, honey! Wait, yard sign: “Free weeds! Pull your own.” They don’t market this during the summer because why?

DEB: You know things still grow in places like Florida, right? T-shirt: “I AM WOMAN. I AM INVINCIBLE. I am tired.” Sooooo many women I know who feel that way!

ME: Something from the “Men’s Christmas Collection” of a catalog: bourbon & tobacco soap!

DEB: (looking) What? Why? Is this for those guys who have sworn off women and feel they need extra protection to keep them away?

ME: No idea. It’s made with “rich rhassoul clay.” Don’t we use soap to get rid of clay?

DEB: Apparently not all of us, Jackster. Okay, in the strange marketing category: here are water-proof gloves for winter use. The photo shows a guy with his gloved hand in water, and the caption says, “Works in temps as low as -30°F!” When I went to school, water at -30° was called “ice.”

ME: And here’s a “Classic Replica Phone with Today’s Modern Features,” including “answering machine capability.” So by “today” they mean “some time in the early 1990s,” which I think is when standalone answering machines were last made. But I guess anyone still old enough to have a landline would know what that means? Oh, but here’s a t-shirt our grandniece would buy for you, honey! “I am not just an aunt. I am a Loving, Crazy, Beautiful, Awesome Bundle of Wonderful.”

DEB: She can’t read yet. And she doesn’t understand money yet. Trust me, I’ve taken her to fast food places.

ME: But if I told her “this shirt says Aunt Debbie is WONDERFUL” she’d have her Unca Chack buy it for her and she’d pay me back later.

Copyright ©2021 by Jack Herlocker. Anybody else still putting “©2020” at the bottom of their stories and photos? Anybody?



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Jack Herlocker

Jack Herlocker


Husband & retiree. Developer, tech writer, & IT geek. I fill what’s empty, empty what’s full, and scratch where it itches. Occasionally do weird & goofy things.