Slightly Bemused writes:

There are a few problems with coming up with a good murder plan. I suppose the first is to not devise it with your supposed victim while lying on a certain sleeping bag under a wonderfully dark starlight night

I went to Christmas Mass. Of course, I had not booked ahead, but the stewards were wonderful. I got offered a place at the back where they normally sit. Masks were on, social distancing was observed. And somewhere in there my knees let me down. A very kind man with a really cute baby helped me up, but one of my decrepit knees took a knock. When a lot of kilos of me decides to come down, and the portions of my body supposed to stop them get in the way in the wrong way, let me just say it hurts. So once home a gel was brought forth and rubbed liberally. Knees move again! A dog will happily do yoga once more.

When I met the lady who became my wife first came into my life she did something very sensible. She told me of her allergies, and one in particular. It was to the active ingredient of this particular gel, hard to come by in the US, but easily available in Europe, and Ireland. She had an Epi-pen, and made sure I knew where it was and how to use it. And so a murder plot came about even as I was being told how to prevent it. She presented it herself, but did advise it would only work in Europe.

The second problem with a murder plot is discussing it with the daughter of the proposed victim, especially when she is your own daughter. She gets kind of upset at the idea of you offing her mother!. Probably not too surprising, really. This discussion was after she pretty much broke her wrist the year Harley Davidson fans came to town, and we had to go to Chicago. Out came the gel, and after making sure she was not allergic, the plot was presented while massaging the sore joint. Now currently safely a couple hundred miles away from the ‘victim’.

We did head up the Sears Tower and did the whole Ferris Beuller thing of leaning on the window. The look on the usher’s face pretty much said that everybody did that, and he had had enough.

And so comes the third problem with a murder plot – stop telling everyone! The theory was that if I liberally smeared this gel on my hands, then said hello, would it be a problem? Lots of TV shows have hinged on less.

Simple answer is it would not work. Apart from there being an Epi-pen to the rescue, I have an image in my head of a CSI type scientist saying something along the lines that her allergic reaction was caused by a product not readily available in the US. Hmm… Who might have visited recently? So, nabbed! It was my darling daughter who explained that point, after she gave out to me, and hit me with her other arm.

Now I am lucky, I have very few allergies. Biggest one is contact nickel, and in recent years I am not sure if I am developing hay fever, or just live too close to lots of grass. But Little Slightly does have a few. One year we had to take her to get one of those tests where they prick you multiple times for all sorts of stuff. Her mother could not hold her, as she said she herself was allergic to pretty much everything being tested.

And so my little love, with both forearms pricked many times, nestled in my arms, and put her head down on a certain rotund part of me and said it was her personal pillow. Still trying to lose that!

The funniest bit though, was when the doc came back in, and he had a little chart of which prick was what. The biggest, reddest welt was labelled as ‘Control’. Both her mother and I started laughing. Our darling never did respond well to control, she has always been herself. And with all in my power I will make sure that never changes.

Slightly Bemused‘s column appears here every Wednesday.

Pic: Allstock

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