A couple of weeks ago a friend of mine--a funny, delightful friend--took me and another woman to lunch. It was to celebrate the other woman's birthday. I will call the birthday girl Ann, which is part of her real name.
Ann was wearing a darling acid green outfit that she had bought at Dillards. It made the rest of us look like Dullards-who-don't-shop-at-Dillards. I told her she looked great and she said, "Oh, I won't look this good for long. I'll spill something."
I was thrilled to know I was not the only one this happens to. Well, I wasn't thrilled that her acid green was going to sport an ugly food addition but I am tried of being the lone sloppy person and was glad to have company.
I think this spilling is a mystery disease--some phenomenon that propels food from the fork to the front--we both have it. Perhaps there is some vortex that we generate that other people just don't have. We should be proud--being able to conjure up a vortex like that.
And sure enough, she spilled. Just a tiny spot but that's enough. I did too but of course my t-shirt didn't matter, except to my pride.
The next Sunday I was wearing a white V-neck knit shirt and before leaving for my 7:00 am meeting I ate a piece of toast. On the last freaking bite I put a tiny bit of strawberry jam. (maybe I shouldn't say "freaking" when talking about the Sabbath but Ann Cannon, who writes for the Deseret News uses it--in one of her older columns she used it a lot. I've sent her an email, asking if I can access her older stories and if I can find it I'll put the URL here. Here's the one for her recent ones: http://deseretnews.com/site/staff/1,5231,174,00.html)
Back to the jam on the toast,--it was not even half a teaspoon of jam, mind you. When I looked down there was a tiny, and I mean tiny drop of jam. I don't know how a drop of jam that small had enough mass to generate the gravity needed to fall. It should have stayed suspended. I tried to get it out with a wet dishcloth and you know how that went. I had a faint pink spot the size of New Hampshire. I took the shirt off and turned it around, put a jacket on and went to my meeting and then to church. That evening I made popcorn with browned butter and when I undressed that night I looked at my shirt and there were about four spots of browned butter along the hem. The hem, mind you. My vortex must have been slipping. Either that or I am extremely clever and talented, being able to spill in such an unusual place
Then there is the tragedy about our neighbor--a newly turned sixteen-year-old--who had her first date to Timpview's homecoming dance last week. (Anything about a first date can be a tragedy so she was doomed to begin with.) She wore a beautiful dress and looked like a dream. They went to dinner first and she was being super careful because she has that mystery disease/vortex too. In fact her mother, my dear friend who knows I have the disease too--and loves me anyway--cautioned her, cautioned her several times to BE CAREFUL. (My friend, who I will call Cindy, because that's her name, does not yell--so excuse the capital letters but her warning was so pronounced it needed the emphasis. Cindy is so sweet voiced that you have to turn up your hearing aid if you are in Relief Society and she makes a comment. And since our ward has so many elderly people--not me, of course--there are a lot of hearing aids.) Anyway, what happened? Dream-girl spills a streak of teriyaki sauce across her new dress. Of course she tries to get it out with a wet napkin. I could have told her that is futile. It only makes the streak into a spot with napkin worms. She had to wear the spotted dress the rest of the night. A tragedy.
So, for all those out there with the Mystery Disease I want you to feel comforted. Perhaps you are one of the very lucky, even very special people who have their own private vortex. That's my theory and I'm sticking to it. Or, we are the clever ones, not following the tidy pack. We are forging into unknown territory. We are the few, the proud, the unique. We are the spotted.