By Dick Platt
Corsicana Daily Sun
By the time this rant is published in the old Corsicana Daily Sun, The Little Woman (she’s still not happy with that title) and I will be on Siesta Key in Sarasota, Florida, for our annual family visit. Our-long planned Thanksgiving visit has now become our non-planned house hunting trip. In fact, we will have already been out window shopping with our nice real estate lady and the reality of the permanent move will have set in.
I am boldly making the prediction that Florida will have finally counted all the ballots from the Nov. 6 elections by the time this is published. It is really bad when even Alabama can count faster than Florida — home of the edible chad. All this malarky about counts and recounts kind of puts the “duh” in Florida.
Past President Bill Clinton did a lot of campaigning in the state of Florida this year and he is really disgusted with the state of affairs in that state. He recently stated that, “...the Florida vote recounts embarrass America in front of the whole world.” Then he added, “I can remember when embarrassing America in front of the world was my job.”
As you probably know, Florida is very highly populated with two prominent ethnic groups — Cubans and Senior Citizens. TLW and I will be increasing the latter group by two with our move there. By the way, did you know that seniors are the leading carriers of AIDS? It’s true — they’re carriers of hearing, band, roll, walking, medical, and government aids. In many cases they are also sources of monetary aids to their kids.
TLW and I qualify as carriers of all the aforementioned aids except “monetary aids to their kids” as our son could buy and sell us a couple times over. Safe to say we are now at the stage where we have to wonder if we have saved too little or stayed too long. Our meager IRAs have taken such a beating over the last few years, it’s hard to tell if they will provide for our old age or just hasten it.
TLW and I are kind of proud of our senior citizen status and we will probably end up in a typical Florida retirement neighborhood where all the vehicles sport bumper stickers that say, “Ask Me About My Grandchildren.” We can’t turn back the clock — her hot flashes have long since turned luke warm and my vital juices have turned to prune. These days we both have to put on our glasses just to think.
I am four years older than TLW — in fact, she is quick to point out that from June 30 until Sept. 20 each year, I am five years older. I am proud to say that we both consider ourselves young at heart as we constantly get older in all the other places. We have both managed to adapt to the carefree retirement style here on Golden Pond and we hope to enhance that style with our move to Florida. The only fault I can find with this retirement business is you never get a day off.
I happened upon an anonymous “Florida Blessing” a while back which might give some insight into what it’s like to live in Florida and it goes like this:
“Bless this house, oh Lord, we cry. Please keep it cool in mid-July.
Bless the walls where termites dine, while ants and roaches march in time.
Bless our yard where spiders pass fire ant castles in the grass.
Bless the garage, a home to please carpenter beetles, ticks, and fleas.
Bless the love bugs, two by two, the gnats and mosquitoes that feed on you.
Millions of creatures that fly and crawl, in Florida, Lord, you’ve put them all.
But this is home, and here we’ll stay, so thank you Lord, for insect spray.”
Well, isn’t that special? That little ditty might give one pause about moving to “The Sunshine State” because we don’t have any of those critters here. Yeah, right! The ditty failed to mention the two nastiest pests — sand fleas and “no-see-ems.”
It just goes to show that Sarasota has a lot more to offer than great seafood, great beaches, great seafood, great golf courses, great seafood, many historic buildings and sights, great seafood, and a plethora of sports and recreation. Oh, and they have great seafood there too.
Let me close with a disturbing statistic I found while statistic-surfing. On average, the American wife lives six years longer than her husband and she spends five of those years looking for the will. No...actually, I just made that up. In our case, TLW knows exactly where all the paperwork is, what it says, and who has extra copies for safekeeping.
Dick Platt is a Daily Sun columnist. His column appears on Tuesdays. Want to “Soundoff” on this column? Email: firstname.lastname@example.org