There’s more than one way to scratch a nose

If I went into nursing, I’d win some sort of prize because I have discovered how colds are transferred from one person to another without sneezing or wheezing or dripping or blowing.

By phone. That’s right, folks, by phone. If you should happen to get a call from your daughter or you call her and she’s pulling all those cold-related tricks, hang up. Don’t even say bye, just hang up.

I haven’t had a cold in years, and suddenly, after a call to my daughter in Denver, I turned into a mouth breather. You know, breathing through my mouth because my nose won’t work.

OK, it could have been the cold, snowy weather, but I much prefer to think my daughter and I are in sync enough to have colds at the same time. There’s nothing else to do except hunker down in my recliner with all sorts of warm blankets. Such a tactic doesn’t hurt at all, because I’m pretty good at doing nothing in favor of sitting in my recliner.

Several years ago my friend Paulette made me a fleece cape, which I’ve trained, much like my afghan, to sit on the floor by my feet when I’m in the recliner. That way I don’t even have to get up to get warm. One night instead of wearing it as a cape, I spread it and used it like a blanket. Now, most times when I’m tucked in well, my nose starts to itch or I start coughing, which necessitates dragging my hand from under the blanket. Of course, that happened, so I lifted my hand and it went out the hole in the cape where my head would have been. Just as if it had been planned.

I laughed. Of course I laughed and continued the hand projection time after time to make certain it was more than a fluke. Now, although it may be the height of laziness, I don’t even have to pull the blanket, or cape in this case, off to scratch my nose.

On a different note, isn’t fluke a funny word? Fluke. A flatfish, a worm or a chance. That’s quite an array of objects using the same word for a name.

Fluke, the chance, could also be described as an unexpected stroke of good luck. If so, then a fluke it was last week when I found everything I’ve been saving for months to send my daughter for Christmas. Some of it not as gifts, just stuff I wanted her to have so I could get it out of my house.

Another fluke when I picked up two flat-rate boxes from the post office. Seems I needed both. When I discovered that, I rummaged through my pantry shelves to find every bottled pepper or spicy thing I’ve been keeping for her, wrapped them well and put them in the boxes.

It’s that get-your-moneys-worth syndrome. If it’s allowed and possible, do it. That’s why I’ve quit eating at buffets. Well, for the most part I’ve quit eating at buffets.

It would be a real fluke if I quit completely.

So long friends, until the next time when we’re together.

Sandy Mickelson, retired lifestyle editor of The Messenger, may be reached at