Never Too Soon for Another Story

It was a light and cloudless day. (Nice switch, huh?) The old man lay on his back in the grass waiting for a cloud so he could identify what it reminded him of. The grass woke his allergies and he began to sneeze. When he decided to get up before the cloud appeared, he discovered that he was a human turtle, except his shell was on his front. Poor guy.

About that time some teen boys came along. The tallest one stopped. “Whatcha doin’ ol’ man?”

The old man quickly rolled back onto his back. “I’m exploring Mars,” he said, thinking fast. Well, as fast as an old person’s brain will think, anyway.

The kid lay down in the grass next to the man and observed. “I don’t see anything but blue.”

The other four boys lay down to get a look. “I don’ know. Maybe that’s it over there,” one said. Turned out it was just a speck of something on his glasses.

“I believe,” the old man mused, “that there are some things invisible to a teenage eye that be seen quite clearly with a senior eye.”

“No way,” the tallest one flared. “Everybody knows young eyes work better than old ones.”

“Hmmm, if that’s so, why I can tell you aren’t wearing any underwear?”

The boy’s head jerked sideways, and he stared at the old man, suspicion dripping from his face. “Mind your own business, Pops.”

“Or why do I know that the rest of you didn’t make the football team?”

The other four scrambled to their feet, and put their fists on their hips in indignation.

“Give an old man a heft up, will you? Then I’ll tell you how I saw all this.”

The boys heaved him to his feet. “OK, give. How did you know that stuff?”

“About the underwear, son, your pants hang so low I can see the crack in your butt. Not a jockey in sight. About the football team, the rest of you smell like beer. It’s football season, and every kid on that team is afraid of the coach. They’d never dare train and drink. Thanks for the lift.”

Voila, age and treachery get the drop on youth and skill again.


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