The University of Iowa Bumblebees

Amy and I were playing Ticket to Ride. Amy was black. I was yellow. Amy commented that we had bumblebee colors. I said it was Iowa Hawkeye colors. Amy asked why the Hawkeyes weren’t the bumblebees. “Bumblebees are scary,” she said. Maybe. But not on the football field. Some names must remain static. I imagine […]

2020 Bibliopathy Report

I have a problem. It’s books. I acquire them armloads at a time. Many go unread for years. They are insulating the house, I think. To this and other rationalizations, my wife, Amy, rolls her eyes, but she’s got a bad case of bibliopathy herself. She just hides it with e-books and library checkouts. We […]

Editor’s Note–TFF Issue 28

Root cause analysis is important. Years ago, I owned a Chevy S-10 pickup truck. It had a rotted tailgate; it shifted like I was trying to push a toothpick through modeling clay; and it would occasionally send perfume bursts of gasoline fumes into the cab when the fuel injectors malfunctioned. But I thought it was […]

Weather News Happens or Not

An article from earlier this week in the Des Moines Register had this headline: Blizzard Conditions Hit Norwest Iowa. Like my eyes to Cubs, Packers, or Blazers apparel and paraphernalia on my fellow man or woman, I snapped to attention at the almost-concatenation of the end of the second word and the beginning of the […]

Apples Around the Dollar Tree

I stand in line at the Des Moines, IA Dollar Tree on SE 14th, six feet back from the shopper ahead of me. We are spaced properly, but he is behind his blue painter’s tape line, so I am forced to stand behind mine, lest I should open a gap that is wastefully large. I stand […]

Approaching Asylum

We were listening to Christmas music through our Amazon Echo Dot. The selection was on It’s Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas, an old version by Perry Como, and the Dot transferred sound seamlessly to our ears as we moved throughout our new house. Once, when the singers got to the Mom and Dad […]

We’re Starting to Paint Tomorrow and Moving Our Stiff in on Saturday

We bought a house in Carlisle, IA. It’s a pretty sweet place, ranch style on a corner lot, with vaulted ceilings and a finished basement, on just shy of a quarter-acre, in an established, newer, planned neighborhood, the back of which opens up onto common wilderness space that will never host development. Consequently, this guarantee […]

Don’t Pick Up Abandoned Pancakes at the Park

Will borrowed my American Eagle hoodie to wear to the Phipps Prairie Park in Silvis, IL. Later, he told me he used it to pick up a pancake he found and toss it into the woods. I was mad, but this burned out like a single spark. How mad can you be when your son […]

Jeezuz

A lady staffer at a church we used to attend always pronounced Jesus like Jeezuz, like suds, spuds, or was, with a strong emphasis on the hard, buzzing z instead of a soft s. Why did she do this? It’s because she knows the Jesus that most mainstream Christians have yet to meet: Funky Jesus […]