More than once I have rejected a potential blog entry because it sounded too much like Andy Rooney. Maybe I shouldn’t do that. I wish I wrote as well as Andy Rooney. Some of his witticisms are as good as anything by Mark Twain or Will Rogers. I just don’t want to write like him. Today’s Rooneyesque idea for a blog might make it through the review process. I guess we’ll see.

Have you ever noticed that there’s no place you’d rather be than home, but it drives you crazy when you have to stay there? That is how I feel today. A repairman was supposed to come today between 8am and noon. Now it’s two in the afternoon, and I’m still waiting. In the repairman’s defense, it rained hard most of the morning, and the work to be done is outdoors.

Waiting for the repairman meant I couldn’t go with Manyu when she walked Jack during the one hour this morning when it wasn’t raining. Also I turned down a friend’s invitation to go fishing as soon as the sky clears. If the repairman doesn’t come soon, I won’t be able to go for my daily bicycle ride. My routine is getting messed up, and I don’t like it. I enjoy stepping out of my routine, but not when it’s someone else making the change for me. Today I’ve already written for three hours and read for another two. Other than eating lunch, what else am I supposed to do around the house?

This is the third time in a month I’ve been trapped at home. Once was to wait for the air conditioning repairman, and another time was to wait for an important DHL delivery. Today someone is coming to bury my cable line. This past winter a guy from the cable company showed up and said my internet service was insufficient. I told him that my internet service was fine, but he was insistent that it was not. He ran a new line from the pole at the back of our property up to the house but, because the ground was frozen, left it atop the snow. Finally, after six months with the long snake of orange cable lying across my yard like a neglected extension cord, it’s going to get buried. In all of that time, I haven’t noticed any improvement in my internet.

A man and his son just showed up to do the work. They were friendly and competent. Even though they cut a trench through a patch of my lawn where the bluegrass actually outcompetes the creeping Charlie, I can barely tell where they dug. They weren’t able to bury the last twenty feet of cable because the concrete of my driveway is there. Instead, they helped me tack it inconspicuously to the underside of the house’s lowest clapboard (even though the above ground work was not part of their work order). The project was done by 4pm, so I called my friend to go fishing.

Andy Rooney once wrote, “I am not retiring. Writers don’t retire. Writers never stop writing.”  Had I written that quote, it would have read, “I am glad I retired. Now I have time to write.”

Steven Simpson