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The Observer, Nov. 19 

The Observer has discovered the Cloak of Invisibility. On at least three occasions last week we were waiting for the walk signal at a downtown intersection so we could cross the street. Once we got the signal, we began to walk. It was amazing. Drivers continued to turn as if we were not even there! They could not see us ... we were invisible! (A dream of ours since childhood, we decided to try out public groping while under the Cloak. But, apparently, the Cloak of Invisibility only works while crossing traffic.) We've noticed that it works for others, too. Try it out. Go to any River Market area intersection, wait for the walk signal and start crossing the street. You'll be amazed! Drivers won't see you. (We strongly recommend against the groping, though.) While invisibility is very enticing, we'd prefer not to be a speed bump. If anybody knows how to remove the cloak or anyway to see the invisible, we'd love for you to share it.

 

In that grumpy vein, we'll also complain that the “tennis soccer” players are back, and as slow-witted as ever.

Six young men and women showed up at a Little Rock tennis complex last week with a soccer ball and proceeded to kick the ball back and forth to one another on one of the courts, slamming the ball into the net on their misses. Never mind they weren't wearing court shoes.

Since one of the nets is already held together with tape, thanks to a slender parks budget, the pro who gives lessons at the court was understandably upset. She asked the six twentysomethings not to play soccer on the tennis courts and explained why. A. It's a tennis court, not a soccer court. B. The nets aren't made to withstand kicked soccer balls. How long would a taut soccer goal last?

Explanations fell on deaf ears and mute mouths. The only response at first was a blank stare. Perhaps these young adults were simple. Definitely they were rude. One of them finally said, “We'll take that into consideration next time we play.” Huh?

“Tennis soccer” first reared its insolent head several years ago, at Allsopp Park. There, several grown men wouldn't allow kids to play tennis on the one court available.

There's nothing wrong with “tennis soccer.” It looks fun; it's apparently a training exercise for real soccer. But there is something wrong with rude people who don't care if they're ruining city property. “Tennis soccer” players should call the city parks department (371-4770) and ask that a net be stretched across a soccer field. And hope that tennis players don't commandeer their “court.”

 

The Observer received an e-mailed photograph of a honking big snake from a friend. The friend captioned the picture, “2 foot copperhead run over in my driveway by UPS truck.”

He added, “What can Brown do for you?”

 

Recently, The Observer had to say goodbye to our old Ford pick'em-up truck, which had carried us many a mile. Though we had hoped it would carry us many a mile more, a broken fan belt last summer led to a bout of overheating, which lead to either a cracked head or a blown head gasket. Knowing that the front end was also in need of major overhaul and not wishing to see if our long-dormant grease monkeying skills were still up to snuff, we decided it was time to send the old girl off to truck heaven.

To replace the truck, we decided to get something much more economical, in the form of a used Honda CRV. Spouse thinks it's “cute.”

Our only worry was that The Observer is a weekend tinkerer, and Old Blue was useful for hauling lumber. Recently, a friend asked us to whoop up a prop for an upcoming production of “A Christmas Carol.” Problem is, it was going to take quite a bit of goodies to build it. Not to worry, a fellow CRV pilot told us: she can take it, Captain. Unconvinced, off to Home Depot we went.

To our surprise, when all was said and done and the seats were folded flat, we managed to get a 32-by-80-inch hollow core door, four eight-foot two-by fours, and a sheet of 1/4 inch plywood (cut in two) into our tiny Honda with all the doors and windows all shut. There was even room for Yours Truly to steer.

We miss our truck, but the new Observatory sure is a hungry little cuss and we're getting 26 miles to the gallon (!) to boot. We're seriously thinking about forgiving Japan for the whole “Starting the War in the Pacific” thing.

 

 

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