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TITLE: Ninconpoops Anonymous
By Charldene Ashley
11/11/08
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This is for anyone who's ever been forgetful--which, I suppose, is everyone. Be kind...it's my first post in the Critique Circle.
I’ve never been habitual. Is that so bad? I mean, who wants to live life in a deep rut, putting foot in front of plodding foot, never deviating from sameness and always? When I go to the Hag ‘n Daz store, I never order the same ice cream twice. To be predictable at Hag ‘n Daz means missing out on a dozen other scrumptious flavors.

I like to think my unpredictable nature makes me fascinating and compelling. My husband calls it exasperating. Oh, he admits I keep him guessing at the Haagen Daz store, but in his opinion, I’m predictably unpredictable.

For example, he says he can’t predict where he’ll find my car keys, but he can predict they won’t be on the key rack. He postulates that there is no biological link between my brain and the hand that puts down eyeglasses, wine glasses, wallets, cell phones...and car keys.

Well, the reason I may appear forgetful at times is because my quick mind is moving like a drag strip racecar, while my body follows on a moped. Those car keys were in the microwave because they happened to be in my hand when I was thinking about supper. Understand?

Okay. I do have difficulty with names. But can I help it if so many people have forgettable ones? I remember Osama, Madonna and OJ. But people with names like Mary, Bill or Bob ought to have a distinguishable feature, like a shocking shade of red hair or an eye patch. They might try wearing their pants inside out. Big ears would help.

Yes. I won’t deny it. I’ll spend $100 on groceries and not buy milk which is what I went to the grocery store to buy in the first place. Can I help it that friends always show up in the dairy aisle? I get distracted.

Alright, alright, I admit it. I forget to take shirts to the laundry, water plants, feed fish, or call my mother... Okay, so I’m slightly absentminded at times. My husband says it’s beyond absentmindedness, it’s “nincompoopedness”.

Nincompoopedness. What kind of word is that? Is it like being “brain dead” or just “clueless”? Why “nincompoopedness”? What’s wrong with “absentminded”? Professors can be absentminded, why can’t I? Sure I have mental burps now and then and I’ll walk into doors, fall into pools, put shoes in the freezer, and... Oh fine, I’m a nincompoop, an exasperating, predictably unpredictable nincompoop. I admit it, okay?

My mom always said I was smart so she must be a nincompoop too. I guess it’s genetic. Now I’ve spawned three little nincompoops who will scatter nincompoopy chromosomes throughout an unsuspecting world. Nincompoop support groups will spring up like mushrooms. Perhaps we’ll be banished to nincompoop colonies like the lepers of biblical times.

It’s God’s fault. I suppose He made me this way for some mysterious purpose related to His Divine Plan. Who can understand why God does what He does—I mean, can someone explain to me why He created mosquitoes? I wouldn’t exactly call Him unpredictable, but rather predictably unfathomable. I like the sound of that.

Now that I think about it, which would I rather be? An unfathomable, predictably unpredictable nincompoop or a predictably predictable “creature of habit” like my husband?

I think I’ll go sample the new flavor at Haagen Daz. Now where did I put those car keys?
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