The Sandoval Signpost (Web edition) is pleased
as punch (diet punch that is) to bring you the humor
and insightful human observations of Daniel Will Harris,
author of My
Wife and Times. —Ed].
In the altogether
By Daniel Will Harris
I learned a valuable lesson today—never leave your house naked. It's an obvious lesson, I know, but I guess I'm just one of those people who can only learn by doing.
I have a good explanation for how I happened to be on my front deck, au naturelle. I was getting in the shower. Before I could get in, the toilet decided to overflow for no apparent reason. I have a theory about toilets—that they like to overflow because normally they don't get the chance to see your face. When they overflow, they get lots of attention and face time, which explains why they do this on a regular basis. At least that's how it seems to work in my world.
I was in a movie once where I said the line, "I'm good with plumbing, I once stopped up a toilet," and I was very convincing in my reading because the only acting that was required was in the word "once."
Anyway, the toilet was overflowing and the only thing I could find to keep the water from running throughout the house was my towel which I sacrificed for this worthy cause.
Now I had a wet towel to dispose of. I found a bucket (in the bath tub, which sometimes doubles as a storage space) and put the towel in it and carried it out to hang over the railing of the front deck where it would either be carried off by wet raccoons or I'd figure out what to do with it later.
I don't even like to look at my naked body in the mirror—I wouldn't consciously inflict it on others. And since I live in an area where no one can see our house from the street I wasn't flashing anyone.
So there I was outside, arranging a very wet towel over the deck railing, when I felt a gust of wind and heard the sickening thud of the front door closing—quiet, but profound. I didn't even try the door—I knew I hadn't unlocked it before I went out. I looked around and realized it was just me and the world with nothing in between.
Don't get me wrong, I have no problem with nakedness. If I had a body like Brad Pitt I would be naked as often as possible—even, as Rosie O'Donnell says, "In the frozen food aisle of the supermarket."
But I am more like something from the frozen food aisle, with a body not unlike the Pillsbury Dough Boy. It was at that moment I realized The Dough Boy's appeared naked for over 30 years, wearing nothing more than a hat and a bandana! If his mere nakedness was not enough, every time he appears he's seen with a different woman poking him in the abs as he giggles. What kind of message is this sending?
And who else could get away with this? Certainly not me. I'm a chubby white guy but if I appeared wearing only a hat and bandana I'd be arrested faster than you could shield your eyes to avoid seeing my crescent rolls.
I snapped out of it when I heard a car coming down the street, and wondered where I could hide if it was the UPS guy, or worse, the Fed Ex gal. I had to get inside. We had a key hidden somewhere—but it was hidden so well I didn't remember where. I recalled something about the back yard and a treasure map with "six paces north, 27 paces east," and something about a "sticky monkey flower bush" (that's its real name). But since I still can't recognize poison oak when I see it, I thought this might be an especially dangerous endeavor.
Just then, the wind picked up and the front door opened. All by itself. I guess it had never been locked in the first place! I lunged towards it before the wind could close it again, and kissed the carpet inside. One more important life lesson under my belt (if I had been wearing one).