I often whine about working in a corporate office building. After years in a beautiful library sharing an office space with two colleagues, sitting in a cubicle farm with an outward-facing monitor is a hardship. Every now and again there’s a bonus to traditional office life. Like today, when the building managers threw an ice cream social. I went downstairs at 2 to collect my share, a scoop of toffee crunch in a sugar cone cup. What a novel presentation! I gripped my cane with my left hand, holding the cone-cup as gingerly as possible as I made my way to the toppings table. One step. Two steps. Crunch! My poor motor skills caused a wobble followed by an overcompensating grasp to steady things, leading to a “Hulk smash!” moment. Half of the cone-cup crumbled to the floor as I cradled the remaining cone bits and ice cream in my hands. A colleague called for a regular bowl, but, alas, they had run out. Another colleague rushed over napkins, on which we placed a fresh cone-bowl, in which I placed my slightly mangled dessert. The ice cream lady apologized repeatedly as if she had somehow caused the near calamity. I slunk back to the toppings table for hot fudge.
None of these toppings were offered, BTW.
I live to eat and drink, but eating and drinking now comes with risk. Cutting meat at a nice dinner often results in silverware clattering down to the plate . . . or, worse, the floor. The hand-hand coordination of bread buttering is daunting. A full glass of any beverage is a hazard to all within a three foot radius. I’ll be damned if I’m going to stop eating steak or start eating my bread unbuttered, though. I suffer these small embarrassments with a polite apology and a smile and let life (and the meal) go on.

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