This is the second blog about my father’s short stories.
To recap briefly, I helped my father write his memoires and I’ve blogged about it here. My father introduces me to his friends with, “He wrote my autobiography.” Not long after we finished he was diagnosed with dementia. Quite some time later, unexpectedly, he decided to write short stories. Since he started writing, his mental abilities have remained stable — substantially diminished from his initial level but stable. Others with his diagnosis have declined over time. My mother and I believe that writing has helped him keep up his sense of humor, interest in the world around him and even hope for the future. With his permission, while I am going through the process of having cataract surgery on both eyes, I thought I would share some of his efforts with you. Last week I included some of his stories. Here are some more,
Dad’s Short Stories
DOGS 11 1021-‘11
I live in various places along the west coast. The food is best there. It is more plentiful between May 1st and September 1st. Otherwise I live in Idaho and Montana the rest of the year as I find law enforcement is not so strict there. It isn’t bad elsewhere. I am a dog aged 5. You can always find food in this mountain state but you look harder. I have been considering a foreign state but you are no better off there. I was best man in Canada once. My girl friend Arlyne was the bridesmaid. Customs are different there. First, guests are carefully invited. If you are not invited, you have to wait until after the wedding to say hello to them. Second, there are lots of cameramen and they are taking pictures. This is spreading to the U.S. as everyone has a camera. I received several prints. To share the happiness, I put some on my bulletin board. No one ever mentioned them. One was of us kissing and my girl friend almost had a fit. She stepped back in surprise. She hadn’t yet adopted the custom. I intended to send a copy to most of my relatives. But Arlyne said no. My relatives would have to meet her. And so the custom died. Then we all got some mail. All dogs were free! They couldn’t be shot so we failed to spread that function.
How To Play Bridge
I am an average player and my partner is one of the best. One time I had 5 Aces so I moved one of them. My partner didn’t criticize, she had seen worse. One time I had six clubs but they were 6 spades. She didn’t criticize. Another time she put a spade with a club. She may or may not have seen the difference. I didn’t criticize but she didn’t wear glasses. Another time she had three hearts when she really had three diamonds. I didn’t criticize. I do wish she would buy phony glasses. I had five Aces again. I moved one and didn’t say a word. I got pretty good at moving cards. She ran for a spot on the council and for once I was very quiet. I wanted to see what she would do if she was elected. Then I had a great idea. You could have any number of any suit, up to two Spades. That was passed unanimously, even another voted for it.
The squirrel lived in a hickory tree in our back yard. Most of the time, he woke up every morning with his endless chatter. He was almost tame but he wouldn’t let a human touch him. He lived mostly on hickory nuts. He teased the dog for recreation. He ignored fences, of course. He spent almost as much time in the neighbor’s yard as he did in ours. He greeted us when we went out at night. I don’t know what he did in the winter. I’m sure that heaven has lots of squirrels; all they do is make one feel well. They do no harm. I wish I could live as well.
This is a short story about a blanket. When you are cold, it is very valuable. When you are hot, it is a piece of junk. I have a red blanket and today I use it because I am cold. It could be green or black or brown. What other property could be so volatile? I have a car and it is the same way. My nurse throws the blanket on and off of me. Maybe we should have a national blanket day. Years ago we had a national dog day every year. In Africa they have a national dog day. They hunt and eat dogs. That day the dogs hide in a place they never tell humans about. The cats are very happy that day.