This column comes to you courtesy of the Nobody Likes a Wise Guy department. My dad often told me not to be one, and this was before Mario Puzo wrote "The Godfather," giving the term new meaning.
Last week we met our sons at a funeral of a family friend. At home, I discovered the hem on one leg of my suit pants had come undone and was hanging down.
Ever the problem solver, I applied a piece of Scotch tape to the inside and was proud of myself. I considered sending my solution into Ask Heloise, Rachael Ray or maybe that ex-con Martha Stewart.
The only problem was that the tape didn’t hold and by the time we arrived at church the tape had disengaged and the hem was hanging again. (Columnist’s note: My wife knew nothing about my clever remedy.)
While seated, before the service began, I pointed to the hanging hem and the Scotch tape and whispered to my older son, “I should have used duct tape.”
Nobody likes a wise guy because he said, “Or thread.”
After the funeral we attended the reception in the ground-floor auditorium of the retirement home where the deceased lived. Our younger son was talking to a woman who was also keeping an eye on her two young children. Her son, about 5 or 6, interrupted the conversation because he had to use the restroom. His mom told him to walk around the facility and find a bathroom.
My son has been a firefighter for about 11 years and more recently a paramedic on a helicopter. Most of his work environment has been male dominated.
He leaned down to the lad and said, “You’re a boy. Just go in the bushes.” The little guy walked away and his mom thought he took her advice and not that of the wise guy son.
Within minutes someone burst through the doors saying, “There’s a little boy outside peeing in the bushes.”
My son examined his watch and said, “Look at the time. I gotta go.”
What’s in a name? Judicial candidate Deputy DA Garland Peed, rated well qualified by the Bar Association, ran against an attorney rated not qualified. Initial reports showed Peed lost by 56 votes. At first I thought it was because of Peed’s last name. Then I learned his opponent’s last name was Kreep, making it a toss up. Many days later the Registrar’s Office showed Peed to be ahead with still more votes to be counted.
I’m not someone who plays “I’ve got a secret” with my health. The cancer is back for the second time, or is it the third? It hopped over my liver and lymph nodes and is settled in my lungs.
The doctors installed a catheter port in my chest where the new rounds of chemotherapy are being infused. After my five-hour infusion I get to wear a battery-operated pump that sends chemo into me for two days. This round is a little worse than the others. Sometimes my stomach feels funny, but hey, I’ve been an amateur stand-up comedian so things should be funny.
Again I asked, “Why me?” I can name about two dozen guys in San Quentin or Soledad who deserve this more than I. OK, maybe only a dozen. Like that TV guy with the formerly hideously dyed hair and mustache says, “It ain’t right.”
Maybe I’m being punished for being an incurable wise guy.
Basinski lives in Chula Vista.