"What did the tomato do when he saw the pretty girl walking down the street?" my father used to ask, eliciting a head cock and an eye roll from me and my brother. We'd run to keep from hearing the punchline, run fast like the world spinning round, backward so fast we'd start losing time and--Oh my! It's a leap year!
Happy February 29 everybody. The day when the world gets to catch up from all that running backward it's done over the past four years. This pale blue marble we live on just can't keep up with father time. It circles around the sun straining backward, putting on its magnetic brakes just to keep from hearing the punchline. Strains so hard it takes a full day every 1,460 to catch it back up to speed.
And we've got to halt our lives, stand by and wait while Earth gets back on our time. I say we throw a party for everyone who's on schedule. Every February 29, all those who have their papers finished and houses refinanced, wills notarized and Christmas shopping done, should have a parade. Streamers, banners, confetti, shriners on their tiny motorcycles and fat-headed politicians hanging out of their convertibles. "Four more years!" we'll all shout, and it won't be for the governor.
Those whose birthdays are on February 29 will be exalted as the future of humanity, beings out of time. I'm turning 28 this year while others of my generation are turning 7. There's something otherworldly about you people.
Those who aren't caught up can do so on this day. We'll close the government. We'll talk the electric companies into giving us the day for free. On an official decree, there will be no new news on February 29. 24 hours to catch up on the great stories we missed over the last four years (have you seen Hoarders? Damn!) If the Earth needs a day to get back on track, how can we deny the same benefit to her children?
In a perfect world, Mr. Bones. In a perfect world.
So really, what do you plan to do today? Go to work? It's a Wednesday, after all, and the boss will be calling for his TPS reports. The traffic on the interstate's not going to jam itself. Someone will have to get the office lunch order and get the evil eye for forgetting Martha's mayonnaise on the side. Unfortunately, life as we know it must go on.
Today, Aimee, Tino, and Chozzles and I are driving to Chicago. I set this blog to auto-post since I'll be in the car all damn day. My catch up day is a travel day. I'm gaining distance, but as far as time goes, it's a wash.
We have AWP to look forward to. And the Windy City. Cold rain, skyscrapers, museums and the Red Line.
So what did the tomato do when he saw a pretty girl walking down the street?
Ketchup! of course.