Store Your Stuff Here!


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“Elmer, we have too much stuff here. Too many boxes that we never emptied when we moved in here nearly five years ago. The living room is like a maze. I can’t even find my vintage yellow daisy, padded, vinyl lounge chair and my Roy Rogers TV dinner tray that I’ve had since nineteen sixty two. I guess I’ll never find them and will continue to sit in the lawn chair with my microwave meal placed on a card table. This is just not living. You said a move to Florida would be leisure living in the sun, but it’s not and why? We’ve got to do something to have a life.  We never see the neighbors and they never see us.  You talked this place up like it was paradise found, but I haven’t found it yet!     Some of this stuff must go.  I’m nearly insane from it all.  I like order, but a little space would be nice.  I guess we’re lucky to be in a gated, isolated, fifty-five plus community.   But maybe there is a sunny side of Florida yet to be found.  Well, we do live in ‘Coastal Palms.’  That’s a start.  Even if its just a state of mind,” said Mabel.

“Nothing wrong with our stuff. Yeah, it’s a maze to get around it, but as long as I can get to my easy chair in front of my full screen sports channel, I’m fine with it. And besides, what if you need something like that old fashioned green Hamilton Beach blender, you can put your hands right on it. Look in that box, it’s marked small kitchen appliances. It could be in there. Remember those thick malts you used to make? I’d love to have one now. Wouldn’t you?” said Elmer as he relaxed in his easy chair with his socked feet resting comfortably on the two tone nineteen sixty two black and white circular ottoman. You need to relax, doll. We’ll figure something out. You know that ‘Store Your Stuff Here’ storage place is down the road. Let’s check it out tomorrow.  Here. Have one of these. They’re called ‘The Love of Chocolate.’ I know you love chocolate. Just relax for the rest of the day.  How about one of those thick chocolate malts for old times’ sake?” “Just maybe, we’ll see.  Here’s your iced lemonade and your patty melt, just as you like it. Got to go to the garage and check on things.  We just need to be ready.”

Elmer thinking to himself…The worst of all , Mabel is a hoarder. She saves everything. I’m really tired of our garage filled with her leftover Y2K supplies. I guess she is saving them for Y3K. The one hundred gallons of water are no good now. It’s been fourteen years since then and nothing has happened. No catastrophe. No ‘Chicken Little.’ Every weekend she has a yard sign that reads  ‘Be prepared, survivor supplies here.’  I can’t believe I moved her surplus of survival supplies down here.  It almost took another truck to load it all. It’s been five years and nothing has changed.  Actually I’m really tired of her. Tired of living like this.  If I say anything to her, she will call me a hypocrite for not  helping her unload these boxes full of stuff and trash bags filled with clothes and laundry since we moved in here.  Maybe she’s tired of me, but I don’t think so.  What would she do without me?

Mabel thinking to herself…All he does is sit in his easy chair and watch the world of sports.   He doesn’t even think about my needs.  What happened to our love affair so many years ago?  Mom had the same problem with Dad.  He ignored her, too.  He would go to work , mow the lawn, then back to his easy chair.  I guess I married someone just like my Dad. But something happened that got Mom really worried.  Dad’s behavior changed, I mean his routine.  Always home for dinner by six, but one day he didn’t show up.  I never knew what happened.  Then the next day he came home on time.  He kissed and even hugged Mom, then I thought everything was all right, but  something was different about Dad.  But I can’t do anything about the past.  It’s time to organize.  Where should I begin?  Yes, the garage. I must do an inventory of our survival supplies.  I feel like something is about to happen. We’ve got to be ready.  That’s what Mom said.  I think she thought he was involved, you know, but I really don’t think so.  It was all in her mind.  Then she started organizing everything.  She feared we were about to lose everything, but it never happened and she never lost Dad. “The games over, good night Mabel.”  “Elmer, wait, I got an idea. We can create our own tropical oasis right here. I’ll even make us each a coconut shake with the Hamilton Beach.  As you said, for old times’ sake.  Will you help me?”  “For a shake, you bet I will. What you need?” “Get out the Hamilton Beach.  It’s in the box marked small kitchen appliances.”        “I found it.  A treasure to behold.  I remember when.”  “You mean me?”  “No, the Hamilton Beach” with a grin.  “Maybe you, later.  If the shake is right, maybe rock’n’roll tonight.” “I like what I hear.

Hurry, Elmer.  We have love, I mean shakes, to make.   The ice cream’s in the fridge and get the aluminum canister.   Then blend.  I’m feeling hot,  I need to cool myself off with a quick sponge.  I’ll be right back.” “Let’s see, ice cream from the fridge.  Coconut Creme, my favorite.  One scoop, another scoop, and another.  A touch of milk and here we go.  Blend, blend, blend.  Feeling so good, I wonder why? I feel like a new man.  I have a song in my heart, ‘I wonder why I love you like I do.  Is it because I think you love me too?  Doo-wop, doo-wop, love you like I do.’  What’s this? ‘Man-Alive,’ enhancer.  Just add to any cool drink.  Hmm?” “Elmer, you’re like your young self again.  I wonder why?  The chocolates are so creamy and luscious.  What’s with ‘A Love-Potion Product?”  “So, you like them.  How about one more luscious taste, from me? Let’s go make some shakes. So, I’m a Man-Alive again?” “That’s my plan. I think it’s working.”  “I’m your passion of pleasure.” “That’s my plan.” “Let’s go make some shakes.”  “Let’s go make some shakes!”

“What a night.  Was it a dream?” said Elmer.  “It wasn’t a dream, it was a really good shake,” said Mabel with a gleaming smile.  “Ready to store your stuff?”  “Not now, I got all the stuff I need right here with you.”  “And you’re the right stuff for me.”

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