Curses! Foiled again!

I’m thinking that what I really need is a curse.

Oh, not a serious, life-threatening – or even life-altering – curse, of course. Just a handy, catch-all sort of curse that I could whip out at a moment’s notice and use as my excuse for, well … pretty much anything.

This could be a veritable express stop to victimhood without the mess and bother of having real problems.

It works in baseball. I need a curse something along the lines of the ones the Chicago Cubs and Boston Red Sox are purported to have. Or so I’ve heard, ad nauseam, last week as they tried to get to the World Series, or cure cancer, or whatever it is that professional baseball teams do that will have great enough impact on humankind as we know it to cause grown men to weep in the streets when it doesn’t come to pass.

The Cubs, in particular, are rumored to suffer from “The Billy Goat Curse.” Any regular reader may recall that I’ve been plenty cursed by a goat or two in my time.

I feel the Cubs’ pain. Moreover, I feel entitled to a curse or two of my own.

Lucky losers. I’m imagining the usefulness of a self-serving, all-purpose, “get out of responsibility” free card.

Why, with a good curse at hand, you could easily become the luckiest person around.

Take, for example, the benefits of adopting a “tardiness curse.” This would explain, easily and without room for argument, why I am late for everything. It’s not because I fail to plan my time properly, suffer the delusion that my vehicle is actually capable of flight, or am inherently selfish and value my own time more than that of those kept waiting.

I’m late because, darn it all, I’m CURSED.

Don’t blame me. Obviously, it’s not my fault. I’m a victim and my loved ones (and employers) really need to be more understanding.

Need me to let you merge in front of me in a traffic jam? Well I’d love to, but I’m CURSED with a need to zoom up to the vehicle ahead, allowing no more than a glimmer of daylight between my bumper and theirs.

This just in case another vehicle might slip in and shave another 6 seconds off my getting to the heart of the roadblock that much sooner.

This same curse will cause me to drive up over a curb, narrowly shaving pedestrians, to claim a parking spot that was rightfully yours.

Excuse lane. Meanwhile, back on the “it’s all about me” front, let’s say I’ve got 17 items and a checkbook in hand in an express lane clearly reserved for 10 items or less cash only?

Oh, gee, sorry but I tend to see six bags of candy as one item. Ditto my 11 cases of soda.

It’s a curse. Pray for me.

Try low-carb weight loss? Sorry, I just can’t. It’s the curse of Ben & Jerry. Someone pass the whipped cream.

Cautionary curses. Of course, the lure of a good curse should not be handled indiscriminately.

My husband would warm to this immediately, imagining a curse of the toilet seat (inability to put down); and the curse of the laundry (inability to understand why red sweatshirts and a load of white socks don’t play well together).

He most certainly would embrace the dreaded and incurable curse of the fuel gauge (always reads “full” to his eye when, in reality, he has been driving on a tablespoon of gasoline for years and I am apparently the only person in this family who even knows where the gas stations are in this town).

Clearly, it’s best to keep a curse this powerful under our hats.

Imagine gaggles of men on the loose with an all-purpose answer for everything and sure-fire proof that nothing is ever their fault?

Granted, it might seem that a few already carry a terminal form of this curse, but a whole nation? That’s a sure losing streak indeed.

(Kymberly Foster Seabolt has suffered many years from the curse of the unbalanced checkbook. She welcomes mail c/o kseabolt@epohi.com or P.O. Box 38, Salem, OH 44460.)

About the Author

Warm, witty and just a wee bit warped, Kymberly Foster Seabolt is a native of Kent, Ohio, who survived childhood exposure to disco and grew up to marry and move to the country. Her column weaves her special brand of humor with poignant, entertaining, and honest portrayals of parenting, marriage, and real life. She currently lives in northeastern Ohio with her husband, two children, two dogs, two cats, and numerous dust bunnies who wish to remain nameless. More Stories by Kymberly Foster Seabolt

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