By Jean Mlincek
My sister called me to complain. Her
husband bought bananas. “Freakin’ foot-long bananas,” she says. “I’m
going to have to do the shopping from now on. I mean, who can eat a footlong
banana?” she queries. “Think about it, ” she moans. “Three of them laid end to end
measure the same as a yard stick! That’s abnormal!” “That’s pretty creepy,” I offer. She
continues her rant. “I can’t even eat a foot-long banana at one sitting!” she
pines. I suggest she get corn cob holders to stick in each end. “They
help with eating corn,” I advise. I start laughing to myself picturing her eating
a foot-long banana with corn cob holders poked into both ends. It’s a
perfect solution. Table for two. Dinner for Tarzan and Jane. She
interrupts my musing “These foot-long bananas would keep
King Kong at bay,” she says. “King Kong is dead,” I tell her, “which
is sad because he would go bananas for a foot-long.” I tell my sister that the
average American consumes over 27 pounds of bananas a year--or 90 bananas.
If they are the big ones, Thats 1,080 feet of bananas per year.
My sister is not amused by my calculations. Back to her husband, the
buyer of foot-long bananas. “I keep telling him to buy SMALL bananas,”
my sister tells me. “The foot-longs sit there on the kitchen counter, looking
like some alien life force. We had to move the toaster to make room for
them. I swear they are taking over my kitchen.”
I will say this. There are always a lot of bananas on my sister’s counter,
regardless of size, just as there were on my Mom’s when we were growing up.
Big bananas were the thing back then. When I was little, a banana also passed
as a telephone. If memory serves me right, my sister became a telephone
operator thanks to those big bananas. “I tell husband to pick up a BUNCH of
bananas, as in 5 or 6 SMALL ones, not those foot-longs that ripen before they
are eaten--unless you eat 2 yards of bananas in 3 days, per YOUR
calculations.” I don’t comment. My sister drones on. “He knows I hate bananas with brown
spots. I warn him that my limit per banana is 3 spots, period. This last time, the foot-longers
had at least 50 brown spots. You can’t even peel a banana
that ripe without its guts spewing out. ”“This is true,” I say, knowing my sister
could go on for two weeks and three days complaining about spots on bananas
if I allowed her to.. “I tell what’s his name (banana-fana?) to buy GREEN bananas,
but he claims there aren’tany out there.” I try to commiserate with my sister. “Yeah,
but give him a break; green bananas are definitely hard to find these days.
I think they are on back order.” I tell my sister that it’s not just bananas
that are huge. Lately, strawberries seem enormous, too. They are the size of
apples! BIG apples! I don’t think corn cob holders will work on a giant
strawberry. Or will they?
Jean Mlincek is a free lance writer who resides in St. Petersburg, FL.
Ah, I just “unsubscribed” from 47 over-solicitous emails . . .again.
At least, I THINK I unsubscribed. The word “unsubscribe” is such
teeny, tiny print that one can hardly make out the word
“unsubscribe.” In fact, the entire screen looks blank until you notice
something way at the top. How different from the barrage of stuff
these unsolicited emails dump on us. Then they ask us to confirm our
email address. Uh, for what reason? You obviously KNOW this is
my email address or you wouldn’t clog my Yahoo account with tons
of things I am NOT interested in.
I thought robo calls were bad. You can’t get rid of these emails, no
matter how many times you “unsubscribe.” The other day, I got an
email from a news magazine saying they want me back. Back? I
don’t remember having subscribed to this particular magazine EVER,
yet they “miss me.” Hmmm. More than a half century ago, I DID
subscribe to a news magazine to study for current events quizzes in
high school. Is it possible that a magazine keeps track of former
subscribers for over 50 years ? Stephen King, I have a story line for
This past Christmas, I ordered a fiber optic snow scene from a home
improvement store--online. So sorry I did. I don’t have an ounce of
desire for a RYOBI P884 18-Volt Lithium Ion Combo Kit, nor a
Pittsburgh 120-piece tool set with case. My Florida set is fine, thank
you, yet 24/7, I get bombarded with online offers on all kinds of
handy-person tools. I go to the physical location of this store maybe
3 times a year, yet they feel they have the right to “visit” me daily.
Can we get restraining orders for such intrusions?
My sister, bless her heart, gave me a subscription to a digest
magazine. So sorry she did. I love the magazine, but not the 3,45
offers to extend my subscription. “Sign up for 10 years and save a
total of $2,130 over the regular subscription price.” News flash!
I’m 75; 10 years from now, I might not be digesting anything! Just let me
alone already and let me enjoy my gift subscription.
It kills me when these solicitors ask why I am unsubscribing from a
subscription I never subscribed to in the first place. “In 200 words or less,
tell us why you are leaving us.” Duh. People getting a divorce only need
TWO words: “Irreconcilable Differences”, yet you want a response that
could be bound and sent to the Library of Congress?
I gave a gift PRINT subscription of a national newspaper to a friend. You
would think I subscribed, except my daily excerpts come via my email. So
now I get unsolicited headlines, daily briefs, articles that are pro-Democrat,
articles that are pro-Republicans, articles that make you wish you had a
personal bomb shelter and 3 years’ worth of Ding-Dongs.
And 10 seconds after you unsubscribe, you are given a chance to resubscribe!
Ten seconds after! I might be that indecisive about whether to
say “to-may-to” or “to-mah-to”, but when I say I want to unsubscribe from
something, I mean it!
My doctor might need to PREscribe something for the migraine I get
whenever I have to unsubscribe for the hundredth time from that which I
never subscribed to in the first place. Sigh.
Jean Mlincek is a freelance writer who resides in St. Petersburg, Fla.