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MARTHA SEZ: Here’s to eggs and chocolate

April 13, 2017
By MARTHA ALLEN , Lake Placid News

I can see a robin and a crocus in my yard. Some kind of partially frozen precipitation, about the consistency of a Slurpee, is falling on them both.

It was April 15, tax day, 26 years ago, when my daughter Molly and I hit town. We had just come from Boca Grande, Florida, and it seemed strange to be scratching mosquito bites while wearing woollen mittens.

That first season in the Adirondacks reminded me of David Lynch's eerie television series, "Twin Peaks."

We were staying on a mountainside, and at twilight we would hear mysterious hooting sounds in the distance, soon answered from a neighboring slope. This would go on for some time.

People told me-and I believed them-that this was the hoot of the black bear as it came out of hibernation. I have since learned that it is the mating call of the barred owl. Some say it calls "Who cooks for yooou?"

Sometimes we would drive out of town, to Essex or Albany, where we would see butterflies and tulips and blue skies. On one side of the "Welcome to the Adirondack Park" sign it would be about 70 degrees and sunny, and on the other side of the sign the pine trees would be all weighed down with snow and the wind would be howling. Or was it wolves?

Then spring came. The grass turned green and there were carpets here and there of little bluet flowers. Frogs were loud and so were the rivers and brooks. Everywhere birds were on the wing. Also blackflies. I was shocked that such a tiny insect could cause rivulets of blood to run down the nape of my daughter's neck. At least by this time we were scratching our bug bites without mittens.

Every year after that, spring has returned, eventually. Still, after an Adirondack winter, it's hard to believe that spring will ever arrive, the robin and the crocus notwithstanding.

Meanwhile, I am keeping my strength up by strict adherence to the Easter basket diet: hard-boiled eggs and chocolate. Here's a little bunny toy, made in China. It's easy to tell whether a toy animal is Chinese or Japanese. The Japanese understand cuteness-look at Hello Kitty and Pikachu and anime cartoons-while the Chinese just can't get the hang of it. Toy animals made in China look frightened, as if they know they're bound for the stew pot.

Before the Easter basket, I was on some other diet. The South Park diet, I believe. They all start to blend together.

It makes no difference anyway, because no matter what I eat I remain exactly the same weight, whether the regimen is cheesy egg and sausage casserole or lettuce leaves and filtered spring water. This has been going on for a really long time, so long, in fact, that I am beginning to suspect that some cruel jokester has painted these numbers on my scale and is now lurking in the background, waiting to see how long it will take me to notice. Do you think that sounds paranoid?

But I don't care, because no matter how paranoid I may seem, I am pretty sane compared to my neighbor, Dee-Ann, who does not read this column.

Now that it's spring-cleaning time again, Dee-Ann has been coming over almost every day, complaining about her vacuum cleaner. Dee-Ann just loves to vacuum, and when her machine gets clogged or over-heated she brings it over for me to look at. It's like she has Munchausen by proxy with her Bissell. The funny thing is, I can always get it working again, even though I am not mechanically minded, and this gives me a false sense of competence.

I personally prefer a broom. It is lighter to lug around, and there is less that can go wrong with it (although for Dee-Ann that would be a negative). Like the difference between fixing your computer or sharpening a pencil. Also, a new broom sweeps clean.

My feng shui (fong schway) book, however, warns that a new broom will "sweep your luck right out the door." Another way I sabotage my luck is by keeping a cactus plant in a south-facing window, even though it is in the family section (gua) of the house. Very bad. As bad as leaving the Three Stooges videotape on the windowsill in the wisdom and learning gua.

But who cares? I'm tired of winter, dieting, housework (fang shoe) and their restrictions. I'm busting out.

I'll probably regret it.

Have a good week.

 
 

 

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