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It Takes A Lot To Laugh. It Takes A Train To Cry

The columnist has us baffled this week. See if you can make heads or tails of this. Best of luck. You’ll need it!

Think left and think right and think low and think high. Oh, the thinks you can think up if only you try! - Dr. Seuss 

I have a confession. I’d rather be sitting out on the back porch smoking a Cohiba and drinking some Mark West Pinot Noir or, even better, sipping a little Woodford Reserve on the rocks. 

But I’m not sitting on the back porch! And I’m not drinking the Mark West that I picked up at , and I’m not sipping the Woodford Reserve that my son and his wife gave me for Father’s Day. Oh, and the Cohibas; I don’t have any Cohibas. They’re Cuban-made cigars and we all know that it’s illegal for a U. S. citizen to possess Cuban cigars or Cuban anything for that matter. 

We can’t even travel to Cuba. What’s up with that? It’s like Cuba doesn’t exist. But I know they do. I’ve seen the little blot on the map ninety miles south of Florida. It has C-U-B-A printed right in the middle of it so I know it’s there. 

This whole Cuban Embargo thing is a tad outdated, don’t you think. I think we need to grow up and end this ridiculous, antiquated nonsense, but the powers-that-be don’t like the Cubans I guess. Too bad! They make damn good cigars. Not that I have any, because I don’t. Honest!

So, if you’re a Federal Agent and you happen to be reading my column this week, let me state emphatically; I do not have nor have I ever had in my possession, any Cohiba cigars that I bought in Canada and have stashed in the humidor that sits on the bookshelf in my office about four feet from where I’m sitting this very minute inhaling their magnificent aroma. Nope! No contraband in my house. None! 

So here I sit; a slave to the keyboard. Taxing my brain, or what’s left of it; searching my memory banks and trying to stir up enough creative juices to pound out another . 

Please don’t misunderstand me; I love to write. I don’t know what I’d do if I couldn’t write. It’s a great release. It’s therapeutic. But I’m feeling particularly lazy today and I’d just as soon be taking a nap right now. 

In lieu of a nap, I’m going to take a quick drive down to and get a large iced coffee with a couple of espresso shots. Did I say a ‘quick’ drive? Have you driven down Route 106 to the area lately? 

The road is completely ripped up. There’s no blacktop on the road anymore. It’s treacherous! But I know that soon, with hard work, guts and determination; that area of road will be converted to what it once was; a dusty cow path laden with ruts. 

My wife just called. She’s been out shopping and she’s going to get me a coffee on her way home. Of course, I had to listen to her patented five-minute expose on the evils of caffeine addiction, and how I drink way too much coffee and how I need to cut back and blah, blah, blah. But I don’t care as long as she gets my coffee. 

She’s stopping at to pick up a few things too, so it could be a while before she gets here. I have some iced coffee left over from earlier this morning. There’s not much left, but I’ll throw a few ice cubes in it and pound it down. It should hold me until she gets home. You know, I’m thinking a Cohiba would taste great with that coffee. That is, if I had a Cohiba, which I categorically deny having. 

Good grief! Where was I? Oh, yeah. I was telling you how I really don’t feel like writing today. 

One drawback of working as a freelance writer is that I can’t call in sick. I can’t stick a bunch of Kleenex up my nose so I sound congested, call myself, cough in to the phone and say, “I feel horrible. I have a fever and I can hardly breathe. I’m not coming in today.” 

Well, theoretically I could do that. But I’d have to call myself from my cell phone because if I called myself from my office phone my line would always be busy and I’d never reach myself to tell myself I’m going to be out sick, and then I’d be wondering why I didn’t show up at work or at least have the decency to call myself to let myself know I wasn’t going to be at work.

Then I’d get angry with myself for not calling myself to tell myself I was sick, so I’d fire myself and go and sit on my back porch, sip a little Woodford Reserve and smoke a Cohiba, which would be difficult because, as we’ve already covered in detail; Cubans are illegal and I definitely don’t have any in the cherry wood humidor on the third tier of the oak bookshelves directly behind my desk. Not a one. Seriously! 

You know, I have absolutely nothing to say this week – no ideas whatsoever. It’ll be the first time in my career that I’ve missed a deadline, but I just don’t care. The world will keep on turning without The View From Here. I’ll talk with you later. I have to call and tell him he’s going to have to come up with something else to use in place of my column. I might even hack and cough in to the phone. 

Oh, incidentally; the title of this column, It Takes A Lot To Laugh. It Takes A Train To Cry, has absolutely nothing to do with anything I wrote, or in this case – didn’t write. It’s a Bob Dylan song. The Grateful Dead’s version of this tune is a favorite of mine and I’ve wanted to work it in to a column for weeks now so that’s what I did. I exercised my Poetic License. 

Sorry I had nothing for you to read this week. Hey, stuff happens! But thanks for stopping by anyway. I appreciate it more than you’ll ever know. If not for you guys, I don’t know what I’d do. 

I’d probably just sit out on my back porch, drink a little Woodford Reserve and smoke a good cigar. Not a Cohiba of course, because they’re illegal. I don’t have any. I’ve never even seen one. Honest! That’s the truth! 

Make it a great week! 

Bob Havey is an Easton-based freelance writer. His column, "The View From Here", appears each Tuesday at http://easton-ma.patch.com and his column, "Take Me Back" runs every Friday at http://mansfield-ma.patch.com.

 

Pat Maguire Parrie July 05, 2011 at 03:25 PM
Dear Bob, Even a writer's artistic muse needs a vacation from time to time! I quit smoking years ago. Tried for years and never made it stick...until daughters-in-law said they wouldn't bring grandkids to our house because of the smoking. Great incentive. So I couldn't enjoy a non-existing Cuban cigar with you on the back porch. Learned to sip scotch some when it was socially necessary during 20 years of life as a Navy wife. Many 'face-saving' activities in those long ago days. So am not sure I'd appreciate your Woodford Reserve. But, one day, when husband and I are visiting the auld home sod in Easton, might send a message to see if we could meet over a glass of the grape...Mark West sounds just about perfect. Does Maguire's serve that delightful brand? BTW, for a "no muse" day, you did just fine. Entertainment...the key! Enjoy your iced coffee! Pat Maguire Parrie
Bob Havey July 05, 2011 at 03:59 PM
Thanks for your comments, Pat! Since we can't smoke a non-existent Cuban cigar or have a glass of bourbon; I'll happily imbibe in a glass of Mark West should you wander back to your old haunts some day. I'm not sure whether Maguire's has Mark West. I'm a draft beer guy when I go there. Lets see if we can find out. Hey, Neil! Are you out there in cyberland? If you were entertained - I'm happy! Thanks again!
Sharon Thiel July 05, 2011 at 04:10 PM
I hereby declare the necessity of 'black box warnings' on columns designed to make me laugh so hard that I cough, and choke, and generally sound as though I should stay home from work with a bad cold, except, I, too work at home, so there'd be that whole thing about calling, and getting busy signals.....uh, you already covered that, so I'll stop now. (Egad! Did you see the length of that 'SENTENCE'?) The computer links were exceptionally good in this great column for a back-to-work Monday that falls on a Tuesday, and has such great weather you wish you were on vacation, anyway! I'd close with "Salud!" so that you may apply it to the high-test iced coffee, the Mark West or the Woodford Reserve, as you prefer ;-)
Bob Havey July 05, 2011 at 09:05 PM
Thank you, Sharon. I always enjoy your comments. I'm glad you enjoyed the column. Remember - Always Keep laughing! Goof grief! I'm quoting Bozo!
Jasmine July 07, 2011 at 01:24 PM
LOL...I love when you have nothing to write about it cracks me up!
Bob Havey July 07, 2011 at 11:27 PM
Thanks, Jasmine. I do some of my best work when I have nothing to write about. :-)
ELAINE NORDBERG ROCK June 24, 2012 at 06:52 PM
May I offer you some topics you may be able to write humorously about next time you have writers block? Worst/best/funniest dates I ever had; best/worst/funniest Xmas gifts I even rec'd or gave; trick or treating in Mansfield; gardening stories?; funniest lessons my kids taught me or did; more reasons you're glad you grew up in a small town like Mansfield; and 'changes in Mansfield over the years. You make everything sound so funny & easy to picture happening. Be well.

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