I know. It's been a long time since I've shown my face around these parts. Honestly, it's not you. It's me. You see, I've been writing, just not here. Lately I've been pouring every bit of my creative energy into writing a novel. Yep, an actual novel--with scenes and a plot and a full cast of characters and ... you get the idea.
Anyway, I've missed you and was thinking it's high-time I come back. And then, everything started going crazy in the world (like this ridiculous virus). Then I really started thinking about coming back.
So recently, I had a story published in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Laughter is the Best Medicine. And I've been debating about sharing it with you. You see, it's a little different from the stories I typically write. I usually share stuff about my faith, my family or my life with MS. I mean, I try to encourage people. Hopefully even inspire. But this story ... well, it's different.
I wrote it on behalf of my husband and it's just a goofy, funny, slightly inappropriate story from his teen years. It's one of those stories he wouldn't normally share with the world (sorry Curt, but hey, you married a writer). So just for fun, I wrote it up, submitted it to Chicken Soup (on his behalf) and figured they probably wouldn't even want to publish it.
But ... as fate would have it, they liked it.
So, as I was saying, I debated about sharing it here. Because there's so many things going on in the world and I don't want people thinking I'm insensitive ...
Then I realized--especially now, with everything we're going through--I'm gonna share it. Because if I can take your mind off the news--or help you smile in the midst of fear--or even just entertain you while you're bored at home, then so be it.
I would ask, if this story isn't your cup of tea, that you just keep scrolling and keep your comments to yourself. As you know, there's enough negativity in the world.
written on behalf of Curt Zeck
It all started one day when I came home from school and found a brand-new set of license plates on our kitchen table. Dad had recently bought a car and the plates had come in the mail. I scanned the bold, black letters and chuckled to myself.
Good thing that middle letter isn’t an I.
As soon as the idea hit me, I made a beeline for the junk drawer. I grabbed black duct tape, a ruler and scissors.
First, I measured the top part of the letter T. Then I cut the tape to the exact size. Finally, I positioned the small piece of tape under the middle letter T. I smiled, admiring my crafty workmanship. Leaving the plates on the table, I looked forward to my dad’s reaction.
That night we went to church—a requirement for all pastor’s kids. Afterward, we went out for pizza. Meanwhile, I waited for Dad to comment on my handiwork. He never did.
A few days later, I noticed the license plates on the car, but the tape had disappeared. I could only assume one thing. Before Dad had a chance to see it, Mom had spotted my minor modification, ripped off the tape and prayed for her poor, wayward son.
Eventually, curiosity got the best of me. I questioned my mom.
“I did something to Dad’s license plates … did he ever say anything about it?”
Her eyes widened and mouth dropped. “You did that?” She bent over with laughter.
I nodded, perplexed. Why was she laughing—and not yelling—at me? She struggled to catch her breath.
“Your dad came home, glanced at the plates and was completely horrified. He scooped them up, drove across town and marched into the DMV.”
She dabbed at her eyes as she continued. “He told the man at the counter, ‘I can’t accept these. I am a pastor. I can’t drive around town with this on my car.’ Finally, the DMV guy took a closer look and discovered the tape.”
Uh oh. Busted, I thought. But Mom was still laughing. “So, your dad asked the guy, ‘Who in the world would put tape on my plates?’”
The DMV guy came up with the only logical explanation. “These license plates are made at the prison. I’m sure one of the inmates was messing around and thought it would be funny.”
My dad didn’t think it was funny, but Mom found it hilarious. Meanwhile, some poor prisoner got blamed for my mischief.
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