Mempsis (memp’-sis): Expressing complaint and seeking help.
After I fell down the living room stairs for the third time, I started thinking about an alternative to stairs to get me up to bed at night. I was getting old and my doctor kept prescribing me medicine for all the ills that kept popping up. The latest was medical marijuana. It was mixed into Gummy Bear candies and it was prescribed for “gravitosis,” a condition afflicting the elderly with a sense of being “held down” by the “weight of the world” being on their shoulders, backs, and feet. The “Gummy’s” magically lift the “weight of the world” by inducing a vivid perception of the reduction of gravity’s pull on their bodies. In me, the “Weight Lifters” filled me with euphoria, like I had unhooked from earth and was in a sort of “gravity-lite” never-never land where I could skip, roller skate, or jump rope painlessly. That’s how I had my last fall: I was high on Weight Lifters, jumping up and down at the top of the stairs singing my version of the Peter Pan song: “I’m flying, way up high in the sky, like a frozen pizza pie, I’m flying.” I don’t know how he did it, and I never will, but my cat had nudged a large Teflon frying pan under my feet just as I was landing from a jump. When I landed in the frying pan slid down the stairs with me riding it like a surfboard. Luckily, surfing memories kicked in from my youth in California, and I rode the frying pan almost to the bottom of the stairs. I fell off on the second step and did not get hurt at all. But that’s when I decided to do something about the stairs, that, along with my homicidal cat, presented a growing danger.
Of course, one option would be to move into a one-story ranch house—no stairs, no problem. But, I couldn’t do that, mainly for sentimental reasons. My husband Ed would spin in his urn if I sold. We lived here all his life and raised six children here—only one was a loser. We could never figure out where we went wrong with Vick. He was violent, rude and uncaring. I always thought he might’ve been the result of a quicky I had in a supply closet at a “meet the teacher” night at Abby’s school. My sex partner was a professional wrestler named “Mauler Malone.” Vick looked a lot like him (from my vague recollection), and of course had wrestler characteristics—he couldn’t play nice. For example, he would choke and try to gouge his playmates’ eyes out during a game of Candy Land. He’s in prison for choking, trying to gouge his boss’s eyes out, and burning a warehouse down.
Anyway, another possible solution to my stair-falling is one of those chairs that hooks to the wall and rides up and down by the side of the stairs. I can afford one those things, but I don’t like them. They are ugly and they send the message “feeble person lives here.” I am too vain for that. Also, my grandchildren would pester the hell out of me for a ride. They’d whine and moan, and even threaten to hit me in the head with my crystal ashtray—just like Vick used to do. Hmmm. Anyway, a gigantic NIX goes out to the “Stairlifter.”
There’s no room for an elevator, so I’m down to the last option: “Carry That Weight” (CTW). CTW provides “burly, youthful, good-looking men to carry you up and down your dangerous stairs. Our men are representative of all races and ethnicities, and are randomly assigned.” I went for it! My assigned “Carrier” moved in with me. He wore a CTW lift alert bracelet. When I need a lift, I would press the button on my bracelet and he would find me and lift me. The major benefit, in addition to the lifts was being able to display my lifter when friends came over. They would assume he was my kept man, and become jealous.
Everything was great, except for my cat, “Ridiculous.” Believe it or not, he was jealous. He started winding around my lifter’s feet, and meowing, obviously trying to trip him up. He succeeded. My lifter was seriously injured in a fall down the stairs. Vick will get out of prison in 2 weeks and he is going to be my new lifter. In preparation, I’ve updated my will.
Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).
Buy a print edition of The Daily Trope! The print edition is entitled The Book of Tropes and is available on Amazon for $9.99. A Kindle edition is available for $5.99.