Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Ramblings from my attic #99

Trash Talk

My friend Elise: tenacious staff director of a hard-hitting investigative committee by day; trash scavenger by night. She recently spearheaded the money laundering investigation that brought Riggs bank to its knees and simultaneously unveiled further evidence of the corruption of former Chilean dictator Pinochet which the Chilean government is using to bring him to trial.

Our crack-of-dawn talk-and-walks go something like this…

E – “We subpoenaed Enron executives yesterday.”
Me –“I drove in a soccer carpool.”
E – “I brokered a compromise amendment to the Intelligence bill”
Me – “I kept my kids from killing each other.”

But this particular morning after she had related the investigative successes of the day before, she said,”Lori, here’s the best story of all!”

Turns out she had taken her kids out for a bite to eat at Cowboy Café and after settling them into homework back home, her fourth grader came wailing those dreaded words: “Mom, I left my retainer in a napkin at the restaurant!”

Knowing time was of the essence in matters of table trash, she didn’t even pause to scream. On with her coat, into her car, and out to Lee Highway she raced. A waiter led her to the back kitchen where the trash had already been dumped. Bemused kitchen help listened to her tale, and pointed her to the trash bins. “I hung my coat on a hook on the back door and dug into a tall trash can up to my elbows,” she related. Soggy hamburger remains; ketchup stained napkins; well, you can imagine. Minutes passed. No luck.

Not to be outdone by mere trash, Elise kept searching until EUREKA, she felt the retainer. As she held it up, the kitchen staff all cheered! Back home and victorious, she marched in her front door hands over her head a la Rocky, shouting “Who’s the greatest,” and her kids shouted back, “You, Mom!” Now that’s success.

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