Lottery Witness

There is a perfidious, silent takeover happening in our world today.  A certain segment of the population is slowly driving hard working jacks and jills to the unemployment lines.  It’s not children, thanks to the excellent prohibitions put in place when child laborers terrorized the nation– with their nimble little fingers and their ability to work long into the witching hours and their pointy little teeth and… oh, I should stop now before I work myself into a tizzy and have to take one of these prescriptions.  Which one?  This one?  No, that’s for dancing.  And this one is for eczema.  How did that wind up here?  Pancakes.  I’ll find it later.

No, it’s not children that are ruining the economy.  It’s the opposite of children.  That’s right– the elderly.

Once I enjoyed a successful career officiating over the nightly lottery, making sure that the the numbered balls were properly popcorn-ed around their plastic tanks and that the host wasn’t too inebriated to tell the difference between a nine and a six.  Not to mention the toll that being a celebrity took on my health.  There’s nothing quite like being accosted in the supermarket by women with juice can curlers in their hair and men in tiny shorts smelling of bacon.  I had to hire a boy to pick up my morning can of fruit cocktail, and he wasn’t old enough to read yet and he couldn’t reach the top shelf, so half the time I’d wind up with a jar of maraschino cherries instead.  I like maraschino cherries quite a lot, it’s just that I prefer to wait until 11 am before I use a full jar of them to make the most delectable Shirley Temple (or Roy Rogers, depending on the day of the week) you could possibly imagine.  It was difficult– hard on my health I’m telling you.  But I loved it.  There’s nothing like combining the smell of compressed air with the sound of hundreds of ping-pong balls and a few flashing lights on a rickety set.  It’s what heaven must be like.  But then, you won’t know until you’re over 68 and almost to the real thing anyway, so you won’t get to appreciate it so much.

One day, the studio decided to “cut costs.”  Why they couldn’t just fire one of their two anchors is beyond me– they were both insipid and I swear their hair was some strange lacquer and Nice ‘N Easy concoction.  No need for two.  In any case, there went my evening career, and in waltzed… the senior volunteer.  The next thing I knew, I was off the books at the library children’s room, too, unceremoniously booted out in favor of some en-dentured bat from the home down the street whose tastes leaned more towards ravenous caterpillars than the fine works of Machiavelli and Dante.  If you wonder what has happened to the youth of the nation, follow the money.  (Or rather, the lack of it.)

Anyway, I was so upset that in a moment of weakness I let the boy take the Dodge Challenger out for a spin, and what do you know he drove the thing into a waffle stand.  Talk about kicking someone while they’re down.  That car was in the shop for nearly two weeks.


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