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THE VETERAN

Page 39

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Post Traumatic Stress Dis-washing

By Cliff E. Adams

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Let's see, 2012 minus 1969 equals 43. Forty-three years since I returned un(visibly) scathed from Vietnam. What could I have to complain about? I wasn't dead, no complaints about that, as if I could complain if I was dead, which makes any double entendre intended. Hey, I wasn't wounded and didn't see much dead and dying (that I remember) so why should I have good ol' PTSD, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder?

Today is January 1 — New Year's Day 2012. My resolutions, which are not entirely related to the New Year, are in full force. For the past few years I've consistently made a resolution to follow Michael Pollan's advice concerning diet, "Eat food, not too much, mostly plants" — this should be proof my resolutions being in full force and this happening to be the first day of the last year of time (according to the Mayans) is a pure coincidence.

Regardless, I'm deep into Isa Chandra Moskowitz's "Vegan with a Vengeance" cookbook and I've just finished a killer homemade Vegetable Soup Base. I'm letting it cool before stashing in the refrigerator. Tomorrow I'll use it to complete the French Lentil Soup with Tarragon and Thyme recipe. Isa promises, "This is the last lentil soup recipe you will ever need." Talk about good Feng Shui — it's the first day of the last year of time, and I'm making lentil soup for the first time from the last recipe I'll ever need — and it has thyme in it! Can't beat that!

Anyway, it's early evening, the broth is complete, now I'll just wash the dishes to beckon my kitchen's good Feng Shui to return and I'll retire for the evening. Just need to go check on my elderly parents who I'm looking after, probably spend some time playing our nightly series of little card games then turn in, it'll be an early night. OK, I'm at the sink, almost finished washing the last of the dishes.

FLASH — instant darkness!

Here is the report (unabridged) of the mental scenarios charging into, looking around, and doing a little dance in my head during then the 4 or 5 seconds (approximate) it takes my brain's frontal orbital cortex to evaluate, unravel, solve, and resolve the reason or reasons for the room's sudden plunge into darkness:

First — It's a global attack! Maybe nuclear! No— No— too quiet! 2012?! Time ending?! No— I'd feel it! Local power outage?! No— neighbors lights are still on! What the hell is it?!! A lone attacker! Someone's pulled plug on my power meter behind the trailer! They'll be coming in! Which way?! Watch the back door! Hit the floor! No— No— wait! The standby light in the CD is still on! I've still got some power! And the bedroom light's still on! OK take a breath — no attack — probably tripped the breaker. Hold it! There's only one breaker! Stuff's still on! Can't be the breaker! What the hell?! Aliens?! A paranormal event?! Whoa! Whoa! Slow down! Probably blew a light bulb. Go back over to the sink — check it out. What happened? Ah Ha! A large water glass on the edge in the dish drainer tipped over! It hit the rocker arm of light switch and turned off the dam light! Move the glass, flip the switch — Bingo! Light's back on! Everything's back to normal. All "A OK" and normal. It is normal isn't it, to think this way?


Cliff E Adams was in the USMC 1968-69. "Sugarbear" In country from 7/68—7/69.


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