(Note: the following column ran some time ago and seems appropriate for today.)

In case you assume I’m in humor mode all the time, you are wrong. I’m the same as you, struggling to hold my head above water during these difficult days. Like you, I am also painfully aware of all the frustration, angst and heartache going on in our weary world. It takes effort to pull your thoughts up and out of the quagmire we are living through these days, and so we turn to whatever tools seem to help. For many of us, it’s prayer, meditation, physical activity or contacting someone who is far worse off than you. (All these tools work for me).

I find myself watching more movies and documentaries. Reading has become a challenge, so I have discovered the world of audible books. It’s not as delicious as curling up with a good book on a rainy day, but audible books are so amazing I did a search of the world of audible readers who make their living doing this. I now have some favorite “readers” who are so gifted you think there are several people reading the book because of vocal changes. 

Some audible books are read by more than one person. I just finished two old favorite books by Nelson DeMille — “The Gold Coast” and its sequel, “The Gate House.” The reader is a man who uses various convincing accents when appropriate and easily switches to a female voice when a female is speaking.

New subject: Since so many of you enjoyed last week’s poem by Roz Memel, the following poem is from the current newsletter of the local people’s utility district. I love it and feel it needs to be shared with all of you:

Wish

by Erica S. Fine

The months go by, the fourth, the fifth

And normalcy became a myth

I want to hug, i want to hold

I want this deadly scourge controlled

I want to walk amidst a crowd

I want to lift this morbid shroud

I sit sequestered in my home

And yearn to mingle, travel, roam

My energy is out of whack —

I want my normal problems back.

• • •

Now that I have all that out of my system, it feels okay to wind up with these from my “Oddball Quirky Pun” file:

• “Ran out of toilet paper and am now using lettuce leaves. Today was just the tip of the iceberg, tomorrow Romaine’s to be seen.”   

• “Just heard the King of Spain has been quarantined on his private jet. That means the reign in Spain stays mainly on the plane.”

• • •

I can hear you groaning. A pun is not a good pun unless it makes you groan. Since I mentioned books, here is my absolute favorite quote by Groucho Marx: “Outside of a book, a dog is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog, it’s too dark to read.”

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