Yesterday was a heck of a day. One minute I was standing there half asleep, drying my hair with my ancient but familiar hairdryer, and two seconds later there was a pop, a bang, a flash, and flames.
The kind you see in movies.
As quick as you can spell Rumplestiltzkin – or at least say it – I had screamed, jumped in the air, thrown my hairdryer into the dry sink, and yanked the cord out of the wall.
It was an exciting moment. Not as exciting as the time I caught the house on fire trying to rid it of a huge wolf spider, but close.
Oddly, the flash fire moment stayed with me all day; not because it was so frightening, though it was, but because during the entire Dryer-On-Fire-And-I-Must-Act-Or-Die Episode, my life didn’t flash in front of my eyes.
Not a single scene.
Nor did I see the faces of my loved ones.
Instead I thought, “I really MUST stop eating gluten.”
I don’t know why I thought that. I mean, yes, I’ve been cutting back on my gluten intake for a while, but I’m not a raging fanatic about it. I suppose thinking about gluten is better than the cliched “If I die now, I hope I’m wearing clean underwear” thought, but not by much.
Personally, I’m a bit disappointed in my subconscious. I mean, is THAT how I’ll deal with The Final Big Moment? With nervous worries about gluten?
When on the verge of drowning during a family outing, will I pause to quickly count my caloric intake for the day and wish I’d eaten one less piece of pie? On an icy day, as my car flies through the barrier of a mile-high bridge, will I be inside my car absently wondering if probiotic yogurt is as good as Jamie Lee Curtis says it is? As I fall over a cliff to my death during a hiking trip gone sadly awry, will I be wondering about the cancer causing properties of various artificial sweeteners and how I really should stop drinking Diet Coke but hey, it’s just so darn tasty?
No, it’s not. In fact, I refuse to allow it to be so. So today I made a resolution that the next time I face a fiery hairdryer, I’m going to make sure I have my subconscious under CONTROL. Instead of vaguely wondering to myself how much fiber was in my breakfast bran muffin, I want to say something meaningful. Something that will be remembered.
I want to be remembered for my last words like musician George Harrison who murmured “Love one another.” before he passed on, or L. Frank Baum, the author of The Wizard of Oz, who managed to get off a quick “Now I can cross the shifting sands.”
Sadly, the chances are higher that I’ll be like poet Oscar Wilde who muttered on his death bed, “My wallpaper and I are fighting a duel to the death. One or the other of us has to go.” Or Dutch Shultz, the gangster who, dying from a gunshot wound while a police stenographer dutifully recorded his last words, managed to rumble out a line of nonsensical items including, “French Canadian bean soup!” Or perhaps I’ll be like Aussie wildlife handler, Steve Irwin, who was fatally pierced by a stingray spine right after he said, “Don’t worry, they usually don’t swim backwards.”
Ah, famous last words! If you could plan your final words today, what would you like them to be? And have you ever had a hairdryer catch on fire while in your hand? Did you think about gluten, too?