Tag Archives: humor

More True Tales from Life in the Circus

My friend who knows I have experience dealing with the media called me to ask for some help. She was promoting the circus which was coming to the town where I live. She needed someone to drive the talent to the local television stations for their interviews. Because I am her friend, I agreed. Then she asked if I still had a minivan. I said, “Yep,” while thinking to myself, just what might I need to be fitting in my minivan? The image that came to mind was a minivan full of clowns. Oh boy.  Then she sweetly asks, “Do you mind having live animals in your car? I will pay for a thorough wash afterwards?” This, I could tell, was going to be interesting.

So, after some discussion, I discover that I will be transporting miniature goats along with their keeper. Phew! I was worried about a tiger or something. The goats travel in large dog carriers. Phew! I had a sense that they probably were not house trained. Then she started to explain where I needed to go to pick up the trainer. As I recall it went something like this, “Take this exit, then you will go about two blocks, turn right on this street, than watch for this gravel/grass road. You cannot really see it, but it’s okay to turn onto it. You will cross over some railroad tracks, and you’ll have to look for railroad car number xx, and that’s where they will be.” I felt like I was in a movie.

I found the trainer, the whole while wondering to myself why I sign up for this kind of volunteer job. He was a very clean cut African-American dressed like a Cowboy. We drove over to the area where the Circus was keeping the animals. He introduced me to his “kids.” Since I only had room for two goats, he had to pick which two to bring. I have never seen such a doting daddy. He honestly couldn’t decide. He just loved his goats. He started to tell me the different tricks each goat could do, and asked my opinion of which I thought he should bring. I thought about television and which trick would be the most visually rewarding for the audience, and suggested which two to pick.

Once we arrived at the first television station, I helped unload the goats. The assistant producer was waiting for us. Immediately after the goats were unloaded, they unloaded. The assistant producer began to freak. She was asking me and the trainer, “Don’t you have something that catches this? Do they do this all the time? Oh, this will not work!” I am speed dialing my friend, who informs me that she told the assistant producer about this reality and the assistant producer insisted that it would not be a problem. Well, apparently it was a big problem!

The trainer got his feelings hurt. He started to decide his time was worth more than this. He was backing out of the interview. I hung up with my friend and made some decisions. I pulled aside the trainer and explained that this assistant producer must have changed her mind. I told him that her behavior shouldn’t keep him from talking about his goats and their awesomeness. He wanted more people to see them at the circus, yes? I promised to drive his goats back to their staging area in the air-conditioning. I then turned to the assistant producer and explained that when a goat has to go, it has to go. No, there was no way to catch or stop it. I suggested she go ahead and have the trainer on the show, but next time, to seriously consider when someone explains that having animals on a set can be a messy ordeal.

I did manage to get the goats safely to their staging area while the trainer went forward with the interview. My friend had another volunteer driver who was able to help from that time forward. I’ll have to share the rest of the Circus story in a future post. And remember these are all true stories–no kidding!


Laugh Until You Cry

When was the last time you laughed so hard, you started crying? I mean the kind of laughter that is so contagious that everyone around you just starts laughing, too? I have to share a story about my youngest son. He has the ability to make me laugh harder than I ever thought I could.  I hope this story gets you giggling at least.

We were driving home from school on a Friday. It was about a 40 minute drive one-way, door step to door step. I always packed snacks for the kids because I knew they would be starving no matter what. I especially knew that my youngest son would be hungry because he is a picky eater. Actually, I cannot really say those are the right words to describe him. Let’s just say his stomach cannot handle very many things well.

As we are driving, I start asking the usual questions, “How was school today? Did anything interesting happen during class or at recess? What was your high today? What was your low?” Each child is contributing, when I finally get around to my youngest son.

“What did you have for lunch today?” I ask. That mild question was actually quite loaded because it was a Friday during Lent, and we are Catholic. Lent means no meat on Fridays. Alternatives like peanut butter sandwiches were out because of all the peanut allergies these days. That’s a real burden for my son who seems to survive off of peanut butter. Grilled cheese is out for him, too, because of a lactose intolerance. In a very casual voice he says to me, “Well, I had slop on bread.” Without missing a beat, my older child says, “Hey, that wasn’t slop, it was tuna salad, and I liked it.”

I almost veer the minivan off the road. The delivery is hysterical. I am crying now so hard that my children are worried that I’m going to wreck. All I can see in my mind’s eye is a Cafeteria Lady with a hair net scooping up a big ladle of “slop” from one of those giant commercial-sized stainless steel pots and slamming it onto a measly piece of white bread. Tears are running down my face as I try to navigate around the roundabout. All of us are laughing and I seriously cannot see where I am going. I finally pull it together as we start down the on ramp to the highway. Oh my. Slop on bread–such a delightful meal. Next time, I’ll tell you the story of my son’s noodles-in-a-bag incident!

Accepting the Weather: Sunshine and Storms

I think I have started seeing myself in the weather.  I have been really griping about all the winter weather and how much I am looking forward to spring. Then, lo and behold, yesterday, it was sunny and a balmy 83 degrees. I just couldn’t believe it. I wasn’t even happy about it. I told my children that I was having a really hard time getting into this nice weather because I just felt like it wasn’t going to be around long. It felt too good to be true. I even checked the weather forecast which said beautiful weather all week long. I started opening every window in our house to avoid turning on the air conditioning, and it was still too warm to be comfortable.

Let me translate how I see myself in the weather for you:

When God gave me something wonderful like a sunny day, I chose not to even believe it. (Lord, help my unbelief.) Instead of gratitude, I found myself worrying about how long this weather would last, which is a very miserly way to look at a gift. (Lord, teach me to be thankful for all you have given me.) I even presumed to think that your gift is too good to be true which is very humbling for me to admit. (Lord, teach me to trust in you.) I doubted your goodness so much, that I turned to human ways of looking at things to verify your goodness. (Lord, change my doubt into deep, abiding faith.) I even found a way to see the difficulties in your gift. (Lord, give me a clean heart.)

As I began to review my day last evening, I realized just how far off base I was with the way I was responding to this gift of beautiful weather. I decided that I would embrace any amount of sunshine God would provide no matter how long. Then, this morning, I woke up to 39 degrees and overcast.  Boy, does God have a good sense of humor. (Lord, please be patient with me, I am still growing!)