Commentary

Billingsley’s Bullets: Don’t drop your pants too early

By From page A3 | September 27, 2017

My neighbor Paul Chafer sent me the following information:

“This afternoon, I went over to the local Bass Pro Shop to get a 9mm handgun for home/personal protection. When I was ready to pay for the pistol and the ammo, the cashier said, ‘Strip down, facing me.’

Making a mental note to complain to the NRA about the gun control wackos running amok, I did just as she had instructed. When the hysterical shrieking and alarms finally subsided, I found out she was referring to how I should place my credit card in the card reader!

As a senior citizen, I do not get flustered often, but this time it took me a while to get my pants back on.

I’ve been asked to shop elsewhere in the future.”

I am the worst credit card user in America! Without hesitation, I insert the card the wrong way at least three times. If the cashier asks for my ZIP code number, I remember it one time out of three. On two different occasions I tried to pay for groceries with my library card. The people behind me sometimes become impatient and demand that the grocery clerk call another clerk so they can be home before dark.

When the grocery clerks see me in line, they call for the store manager and ask to be relieved immediately before I show up in front of them. The clerks have named me “Bumbling Bob.”

• Does your love life feel like it is in a coma? The love life is not dead yet — but nearly dead. Dare you tell your spouse that you feel as if you’re close to dying?

How can you tell if your love life is in a coma? If three of the five activities below are part of your normal week, your romance life may be in trouble:

1. When in bed, your spouse shakes you at least three times to determine if you’re awake or not.
2. If your spouse often says, “Are you finished?” after amorous activity.
3. When your spouse daily goes to bed an hour before you — it’s not a good sign of a healthy love life.
4. A spouse who prefers to sleep in his/her easy chair is telling you something.
5. You haven’t felt your spouse’s hand in the last two years.

• Those who never take a gamble in life may live longer and experience less failure in their lives. But who wants to live a boring life for two extra years? Every once in a while, you have to risk taking a chance to determine if you are in heaven or in hell.

• As a young man I never learned to compete in sports just for the fun of it. My grandchildren learned to play for the fun of it and I let them win until they were 9 years old.

After age 9, you are ready to learn how to deal with losing. Ten-year-old kids have to learn how to deal with a competitive world. If you become a good loser, you start to believe you are a loser indeed and success will not be in your loser world.

In her book “A Cherokee Feast of Days, Volume Two,” Joyce Sequichie Hifler offers the following life lesson: “Don’t keep score. It is a tiresome thing, and if I give you something, it is yours, no strings attached. If you give me something I am grateful, but it is a kindness our friendship does not have to depend upon.

Who owes whom? Are we in competition? Is this a race where one person glows with accomplishment and the other sags from running and getting nowhere? No, there is no need to keep score. It wearies the soul and the spirit so that it cannot fit the slot of friendship.

‘O, the inexpressible comfort of feeling safe with a person, having neither to weigh thought nor measure words.’” — Shoshone

• Talk about a rich person. My friend Nancy can afford to eat at airport restaurants and pay the parking fees in Placerville! She leaves tips that are bigger than the total dinner bill. Once, Nancy wrote a check so big that the bank bounced.

Nancy was my tennis partner. She had a gold-plated tennis racket and cashmere tennis balls. She also hired a young, handsome man to toss up her tennis balls when she was ready to hit them. Her tennis buddies call her “Miss Money” or “Nancy Inc.” Nancy is the only person I know who hires a person to light her house candles.

If I had Nancy’s money, I would throw my money away.

• I wonder how I.R.S. agents would react if I applied the Golden Rule to them? If I get called in by the IRS, I will hum “God Bless America” during the entire interview.

Bob Billingsley is an El Dorado Hills resident and monthly columnist for Village Life.

Bob Billingsley

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