January 3, 2012

In and Out of the Quad Cities

Contributed by Gail McPike and Toni Hall

Gail and Toni Resolve to…..
January 2012

A couple of years ago, we documented our trip to the great Mayan ruins deep in the jungles of southern Mexico. Even though this trip lacked funding from the National Geographic Channel, we did our level best to explore the classic knowledge of what some call the most advanced civilization in the New World. While there, we learned the Mayan calendar abruptly ends on December 21, 2012. This civilization said the world as we know it would be caput, game over, The End with a capital “E”.

We found this quite shocking, because we like to plan ahead. And, despite our best efforts to inquire, nobody could tell us if it ends at midnight on the 20th, noon the next day or even if it all happened on the East Coast time, like the big ball at Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve shindig in Times Square.

A year ago this month, we put together our own personal bucket list – everything we wanted to accomplish in 2010: trips to Galena, rides on the Dubuque Fourth Street Elevator and dinner at Boozies joined some pretty ambitious activities – like attending a box lunch event at the library.

A quick review of the list indicates we still are a couple of items short of achieving completion of the fun-filled activities, even a full year later. But, if those pesky Mayans have their way, the pressure is really mounting to get things done. And, if those pre-Columbian astronomers were right, this may actually be (heaven forbid) our very last January message.

So with all the stress of penning our truly final New Year’s saga, we thought we better make it count. And what subject could be more weighty than the time honored New Year’s Resolution?

January seems to be that time of year we all pause to take stock in our lives and then resolve to make positive course corrections. For instance, the news anchors tell us pudgy crowds push their way through the doors of health spas and gyms this time of year. We can only imagine the membership roles at Weight Watchers get a hearty bump as well. We think of this as the true price of those free cookie exchanges and copious quantities of Current Trophy Hubby Frank’s favorite high octane Anderson Erickson Eggnog.

But don’t you worry your cute little 2012 head, we’re not going in that direction. That skinny little Dr. Sanjay of CNN will no doubt torment your consciousness on that topic, just like Jiminy Cricket in Pinocchio’s pocket. Just read on as your friendly 50+ correspondents provide you with a real health lesson.

Those pesky medical researchers are always blabbing that everything on the planet causes some kind of disease or personal pestilence. Drinking too much coffee is bad, too little is worse. Red meat clogs our arteries, not enough gives us iron poor blood. A glass of red wine improves circulation, but a drop more causes your liver to fall out. Heck, some of these pseudo-scientists tell us drinking too much water might create bad effects.

But good old Gail and Toni have latched onto one thing sure to improve your health, clear up your skin and cause warts to go away – the power of laughter. To the best of our knowledge, no doctor has ever heralded laughing as a source of harm. As far as we know, not a single person on planet earth has ever actually laughed themself to death. Although, we do wonder what happens if you “laugh your head off.”

So, all of our resolutions involve laughter. And, we know “Enquiring Minds Want to Know,” so here they are – in all their guffaw glory.
We resolve to:
1) Always laugh at the right time during our preacher’s Sunday message.
2) Act like we’re laughing when our Current Trophy Husbands tell one of their recycled jokes.
3) Laugh whenever we see the beauty of the Q-C river sunset because we know other people pay big bucks to see something less spectacular in Europe.
4) Laugh whenever we forget something important.
5) Laugh whenever we visit friends who are sick (and ask them to join us).
6) Laugh if we ever ride a roller-coaster again.
7) Laugh our way through the next Muppet Movie and cackle like a hen during the next monster movie.
8) Laugh when we stub our toe in the middle of the night and would rather cry.
9) Never laugh with our mouths full of pop – because it looks bad when it comes out your nose.
10) Laugh all the way to the bank – you know we 50+ journalists are rolling in the dough.

And finally – we know what you’re thinking. Sometimes it’s impolite to laugh. For instance, an improperly placed chuckle as the minister says, “If anyone has cause that this man and woman… let them speak now” might immediately ruin your chances of being named aunt of the year. We have just the thing for you.

According to the internet, the best laugh stopper is to exhale into your palm. Those around you may think you are suffering from some hot sweat or palsy – but you can explain it was an allergic thing.

Happy New Year