Last weekend

Ed
Ed Smith
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I've had an interesting weekend. You may not want to read about my weekend (Aug. 22-24), in which case you should go read something else. To be frank, I would probably not be that interested in yours.

At the same time, I know many of you have been doing things I would find vastly interesting were they not fringing on the pornographic.

I've had an interesting weekend. You may not want to read about my weekend (Aug. 22-24), in which case you should go read something else. To be frank, I would probably not be that interested in yours.

At the same time, I know many of you have been doing things I would find vastly interesting were they not fringing on the pornographic.

In my column of last week, for example, I advised people who didn't already know, that Saturday, Aug. 23, was National Sex Day. Had some interesting reaction to that.

One lady, when I met her the day after, almost wailed, "I've just gotten back from a long trip. I haven't had time to celebrate Sex Day!" I suggested to her that she should celebrate twice that day. I have no details of what may have happened later.

I had an e-mail from another lady which was more positive.

"My husband and I were just getting ready to go out to a party and I said to him, 'Are you taking off your shorts?' 'I certainly am,' he replied, 'it's Sex Day!'"

OH and I went to church in St. John's on Sunday morning. After the service I got talking to a lady member of the choir.

"You know what we were talking and laughing about in the choir room before church started?"

I knew, but I also had to ask to make sure. They could have been discussing the nature of God. Could have been, but I doubted it.

"No," I said. "What?"

"Sex day," she said, and practically giggled.

Seems to me they should have been in prayer or some other spiritual activity, but because of me they were discussing you know what. Talk about your guilt feelings. I was leading this beautiful choir astray.

On our way to St. John's Town, we stopped off at Gander to watch some of the grandkids swim in the provincial Outdoor Pools Swim Meet.

The indoor pool in Gander is a wonderful facility. But it amplifies sound better than Carnegie Hall in New York. Evidently you can whisper on that stage and be heard by everyone in the house.

The pool in Gander is something like that. You can hear a whisper from one end to the other.

Unfortunately, there's no way of knowing what the whispers may be saying. They just come floating up from the other end as a dull roar.

Now I want you to imagine several hundred youngsters from several outdoor swim clubs in Newfoundland crowded onto the deck of that pool. Each child and teenager has been promised a bright red Corvette for his or her very own if he or she can yell, scream, shriek, or otherwise bawl loud enough to be heard back in their home town.

The explosion of sound that erupts from each group as they cheer on their own swimmers is fit to be included in the Sound Symposium celebrated in St. John's.

Apart from the hopefully temporary damage to the eardrums, it's a great experience. It's especially meaningful for those hundreds of kids from Rocky Harbour to Bay Roberts who took part in friendly competition with each other.

On Sunday afternoon, I was scheduled to be at Chapters' bookstore from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. to sign books for people. Mother decided she'd like to sit with me and perhaps meet some interesting people, which we did.

The lineups for my autograph didn't exactly spill out onto Kenmount Road. Sunday afternoon was absolutely beautiful and very few people wanted to be wandering around any store.

OH dropped us off at Chapters and then left for parts unknown, although I had a fairly good idea that malls were in her immediate future. Around 3 p.m., one of the workers at Chapters came hurrying up to our desk.

"I have a message from your wife," she said. "She was getting into the van when she dropped a parcel through the open door. When she tried to pick it up the wind took it for a ride. She got out of the van to retrieve it and the wind slammed the door shut and everything locked down. The keys were already in the ignition and now she's down on the Avalon Mall parking lot (that's a surprise) and can't get into the van. She wants you to get CAA or someone to do something!"

Uh oh. From previous experience I have utmost faith in CAA, but this was a beautiful Sunday afternoon - possibly the last one for the summer - so the outlook didn't seem entirely positive. Nevertheless, we called them and they said they'd have someone there in an hour.

It took more than three hours to find someone, get them to the van and get it open. During this time my mother had strong intimations that we would still be sitting there when Chapters closed at 10 p.m. and what would we do then?

I said I was sure they'd have cots and blankets. The only problem might be food. She suggested at that point she could get a taxi and go to my sister's where we were supposed to be at a barbecue for my niece's birthday.

That would be fine for her, I said, shamelessly appealing to her maternal instincts. But what about me? I couldn't fit into a taxi. She decided to wait it out. We forgot that OH was sitting in the Avalon Mall parking lot all that time.

Sometime after six, after we had been in Chapters for four hours, to Mother's great delight OH and the van arrived. I think her interest in sitting with me at a book signing was getting just a little jaded.

Some weekends are like that. No matter what you're doing for your rest and recreation. No matter how well everything seems to be going, one thing is sure.

Something is guaranteed to go wrong.

Ed Smith lives in Springdale. His e-mail address is edsmith@nf.sympatico.ca

Organizations: Chapters, St. John's Town, Carnegie Hall CAA

Geographic location: Gander, St. John's, New York Newfoundland Rocky Harbour Bay Roberts Kenmount Road Springdale

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