Farmer File

My grandson asked me a question I’ve had trouble answering: “What do you do all day?”

I asked a few fellow sort of semi-retired grandfathers whether they get that question and all have, in some form. Maybe it’s time to take stock, which I can do while standing and walking around, always recommended by my much younger doctors who sit across from me in their white doctors’ coats.

Saying what I don’t do is easier. I don’t play golf and I don’t fish. The former humiliates me and the latter humbles me. I’m outwitted by most critters other than maybe the sponge.

I don’t play pinochle, canasta or shuffleboard. I stink at arts and crafts. I don’t sing or dance or play an instrument, if you don’t count the trombone I tooted for a few years in school because my dad had an old one in the attic. If only he had had a guitar. I could have been wailin’ with Willie. But I digress.

I considered several jobs. Those Walmart greeters seemed a jolly bunch, even if everybody knows they’d look better in a nice shade of taupe.

Real estate is a profession with possibilities, but smiling all the time would be a challenge. Also, I would have to buy a new blazer. The old one in my closet from yesteryear resembles the one Cary Grant wore in, “It Happened One Night.” Moreover no blazer could ever make me look like Cary Grant. And from what I hear, I’d probably never pass the real estate license exam anyway.

I told a friend I was considering becoming a handyman.

“You, a handyman?” he squeaked. “You? A guy who faints at the sight of a Home Depot orange apron?”

He laughed so hard I thought he needed the Heimlich maneuver. I waited to see. He recovered. I erased handyman from my bucket list.

It seems real estate, retail and repair work are out of the question. Perhaps my best efforts now would be trying to answer, for others and myself, what it is I really do all day.

I wrote a novel, “Deadly News,” available now at FoxTale Book Shoppe in Woodstock and most other places books are sold. I write this column and others, but most people think it takes no longer to write it every week than it takes them to read it. Would that it were so.

I dabble in other modest journalistic pursuits. I cook, read and wrestle the treadmill in a daily battle with gravity and the grave. I play with my dog and go boating on our ancient deck boat. I Iike movies.

I support the Braves. That may be my least productive activity. I make lists of things to do. I spend time every day looking for that darned to-do list. I also use up valuable time looking for my car keys or my cell phone or my reading glasses or my you-know-what with both hands.

You see, I am very, very busy and my failure to document my dizzyingly dervish-like days doesn’t mean I’m idle. It’s not dementia, just a willingness to welcome diversions that promise to make the next moment even more interesting than the last.

That’s what I do all day. That, and also spending way too much time wrestling with SpellCheck. (Or is it Spell-check?)

don@donfarmer.com

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