Living Retired — ‘Wordle Wars’
By Gary Chalk.
Jan and I are in the habit each evening of settling down in the family room to complete that days Wordle puzzle. We enjoy the challenge of having six attempts to come up with a five letter word to win the puzzle. I do Wordle for relaxation, whereas Jan is, well let’s just say she is much more competitive. Here is what I mean…
I grab my iPad and stretch out on the sofa and put my feet up. Jan’s sits beside me. She is armed with a pad of foolscap paper and a pencil. She doesn’t wear a camouflage top, but I swear she smudges enough eyeliner under her eyes that she looks like a pro football player running onto the gridiron.
“Jan, we don’t need to replay Orson Welles ‘War of the World.’ Wordle is just a game.”
“Gary, I want to give it my best. It may be more challenging today because I missed my high-protein pregame meal.”
“Jan, before we begin Wordle I am going to grab a beer. Would you a glass of wine, or Gatorade?”
Each night we alternate who enters the first five letter … Read the rest here Read More
Living Retired – ‘Dings & Pings’
By Gary Chalk.
It is May and life is busy. Spring cleaning, gardening, waxing the cars it has been one thing after another which means for my iPhone it has been one ding after another. Or is it one ping after another? Anyway, the technology that alerts you that someone has sent you an email, a text message, a telephone message, a video, or responded to your Facebook post is annoying to no end.
“Jan, something is up with my iPhone. I am receiving way too many dings.”
“Dear, if you want me to hear you you’ll have to come to my office. Did you say something about your dink?”
“Jan, be careful. The windows are open. John next door may be outside trimming his shrubs.”
I am not alone. If you own a cellphone you are a walking circus calliope. Back when I was a radio announcer we screamed, “And the hits just keep on coming!” These days it is the dings and pings that just keep on coming.
Jan suggested I go into ‘settings’ on my iPhone and simply turn the notification button off. Why would I do that? The whole point … Read the rest here Read More
Living Retired – ‘Party Pooper’
By Gary Chalk
Full disclosure: The following may cause embarrassment. Your results may vary.
I received a very special invitation card in the mail recently. Not to a birthday party. Not to call for a comparison quote for our homeowner and automobile insurance. The invitation read, ‘You have been invited to a FIT.’
“Jan, do you know what a FIT is? It sounds like a gym membership. Whatever it is I have been invited. Lucky me.”
“Well dear, you have gained a few pounds over the winter. You should check into it. Just don’t get locked into a long term contract.”
“To be honest Gary the first thing I thought of was an Apple Fitbit.”
The more Jan thought about my invitation the more questions she had. “Gary, did the invitation mention that we have to bring something? Our friends like the hot crab dip I make. Or perhaps they would appreciate a dessert, maybe a molten chocolate cake with hot caramel sauce. Please ask when you RRSP.”
It turns out ‘FIT’ is the acronym for fecal immunochemical test. In other words, it is a poop test. Enough said. But wait. Since when did the … Read the rest here Read More
Living Retired – ‘Pharmacy Foibles’
By Gary Chalk
Jan can be brutally honest with me. She became so frustrated last week she complained, “Gary when it comes to decorating our house, updating your wardrobe, and picking out which movie we should see you don’t know if you are punched or bored!”
“Well dear, at least I am three out of three. There is something to be said about consistency.”
Later in the week not knowing whether I was punched or bored worsened. Suddenly, I did not know whether my name is Gary, Harry, Barry, or Terry! l was running errands and pulled into the pharmacy to pickup a prescription for my baby boomer wonky knees. What should have been a simple transaction turned into a shouting match that rivalled soccer moms screaming at their kids games. When all was said and done I walked away with extra-strength lozenges and an antiseptic spray for a sore throat that I didn’t have when I entered the store! Here is what happened…
I joined the line at the ‘Pick Up Prescriptions’ sign. The staff stand behind huge sheets of plexiglass. Everyone wears a facemask.
Finally, I was next. “Yes I am here to … Read the rest here Read More
‘Living Retired — ‘Feeling Hot, Hot, Hot’
By Gary Chalk
Saturday night Jan was really hot in bed. I mean REALLY, REALLY HOT! And she made me work up a sweat too.
It all began in the middle of the night when I awoke and rolled over and snuggled up close to Jan. I whispered in her ear, “Dear you are sooo hot.” Slowly Jan opened her eyes. Grasping the linen sheet with her hands she pulled it up near her neck and began to groan. She slowly rolled towards me in the centre of the bed and spoke softly.
“Gary, I am sleeping on the new heating pad I purchased for my back. It is a lot warmer than our old one.” Then she rolled back over and added, “Nice try though Gary.”
I sat upright. “Jan I am serious. You have to turn the temperature setting down. I am sweating like a turkey the week before Thanksgiving.”
Last night when I came to bed Jan began to complain, so I interrupted her. “Dear I know you’re going to tell me that I have to remember to wear a Breathe Right nasal strip when I come to bed. Or … Read the rest here Read More
Living Retired – ‘This Is a B-Rated Column’
By Gary Chalk
Jan mentioned the other day to me that a friend of hers asked – these are her friends’ exact words – “How on earth does Gary come up with all the cockamamie ideas for topics for his Living Retired column each week?”
“So, what did you say to her Dear? Did you mention my unique abilities as a storyteller? Or my keen sense of humour? Ahh, I know you probably told her that I worked hard to develop my innate gift of wit from birth.”
“No Gary. I could have lied and said the meds you are on have a strange effect on your brain. But I told her the truth: your sister Dianne smacked you on your head with a plastic baseball bat when you were 6-years old, and you haven’t been the same since.”
The baseball bat incident is true, but I suggested to Jan that she should have mentioned that I keep a notebook on my night table which is where I jot down potential topics for columns when they come to my mind.
“Gary, all I know that you write about in our bedroom are … Read the rest here Read More