19 October 2009

The Cyclops Story

         It is a big round rock. Shaped like a flying saucer, well, sort of -- more round than saucer. It is called a dolomite concretion, I'm told. A naturally occurring round rock.

        "The only reason I have it," he tells me, "is because I can lift it." I sigh and take the laundry upstairs.

        Two weeks later I hear him saying those exact words to my brother.

        My brother, who knows all the right things to say in any given social setting, says, "Oh yes, it's very heavy. I tried to lift it and could only get it a few inches off the ground."

        He emphasizes the word "few." My guy has been collecting these kinds of rocks lately. Most are large but not huge. Most have been broken in half.

        I immediately saw their beauty as a landscaping item and did the "Oh-honey-wouldn't-it-be-nice-as-a-border-over-here?" deal. But I left it alone after awhile.

        One day I came home to find them placed in a semi-circle over by the water pump. Not all together, but spaced out evenly.

        After a couple days of consideration, I mentioned they looked like a giant was buried under the ground with his round teeth gnashing the surface. Now affectionately dubbed "our giant's teeth," the rocks have stayed put.

        Not that I could move them if I wanted to. I'd probably hurt myself trying.

        But that isn't saying much. I can't seem to open a new bottle of cranberry juice either. Even if I get really angry -- and I do because how silly to have to hand him the bottle and do this whole dance about being a weak female.

        It pleases me when he struggles a little with it too.

        But these rocks, like trophies, started to accumulate in the backyard.

        "How heavy do you think it is?" my brother asks.

        And out comes Cyclops. Many years ago we received this bathroom scale as a gift. It has a huge dial in the middle apparently for easy reading. One day my guy wondered out loud why the scale always had a towel on it.

        Well, that's when it got its name, Cyclops, and that's when it was reassigned to the garage. Years later, in surprisingly good shape, it reappears to prove gravity does exist.

        I really don't name everything. I know it seems like it, but I don't. For example, I have never named my car.

        My girlfriend who lives in L.A. was telling me all about Pete one day. After a few minutes I realized it was a car she was talking about.

        I said, "You named your car Pete?"

        And she said "Well yeah. What's your car named?" And then she asked me to hand over her purse, calling it Poochie.

        Anyway, my brother said the rock probably weighed 80 pounds and my man said, "No, more like 100."

        And they looked at me like "What's your guess?" and I said, "Oh you guys exaggerate. It probably doesn't even weigh 75 pounds."

        He weighed himself and then picked up the rock and weighed again. Set down the rock with a huff and announced, "The rock weighs 140 pounds."

        My brother was so impressed that he had to lift it again and the two of them took turns lifting the big round rock.

        A few hours later after my brother left, it dawned on me.

        "You know," I said, "you're the only one who saw the weight of that rock. It could have said anything.'

        He gives me that little smile, -- that little sneaky smile -- and said, "Yeah, I know."

{This column was first published in March 2003 in The Tribune.}

1 comment:

  1. Very nice story, I enjoyed it Judy! Do you have your book back yet? Do you know where any of the books are? I don't know anything..but was hoping you might have some info..enjoy that CA sunshine ..you lucky duck:)


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