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In My Opinion

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Note to self … today is the last day. But of what?

By Tracy Lee Curtis
Tracy Lee Curtis
Tracy Lee Curtis is a humorist, writer and speaker. She writes family humor for the Charlotte Observer. Her column appears each Sunday.

So I’m looking at my day planner, and on April 11, I had penciled in “Last Day.” I noticed it last week, but I was thinking that it was the last day of Lent. But that’s next Thursday. And then I thought maybe it’s the last day to finish my taxes. But that’s next week too.

So what in the world is this? I never write down something that’s nothing. So this day is definitely the last day of … what? It’s not the last day of spring. It’s not the last day of pollen season. It’s not even close to being the last day I sneeze this month, so I can’t imagine why I wrote this.

Was I thinking that by this date I shouldn’t be wearing something any longer? Like, last day to wear wool. Last day to wear boots. Last day to wear a coat, unless it’s lavender linen or preppy plaid.

Or is it something I shouldn’t be doing any longer? Like, last day to work out inside. Eat lunch indoors. Build a fire. Run the heat. Run my mouth.

Maybe it has nothing to do with weather, but is some sort of drop-dead deadline I set for myself for that stuff I don’t get around to. Last day to throw out the old Halloween candy. Or to switch out the Christmas cocktail napkins that say, “Eat, Drink and who’s Mary?” And take all the candles out of the windows.

Maybe it’s the last day before something. The last day before I get fired. Or my house gets broken into. Or my kids run away from home. But how would I know that ahead of time? And why waste time noting it in my day planner instead of just writing better, setting the alarm, and locking the kids in their rooms?

Maybe it was a secret message from my subconscious about something I inherently know I should have done by now. Last day to become gluten-free. Sugar-free. Carefree. Last day to write the great American novel. Or the mediocre Scottish handbook.

I can’t figure it out. I’m gonna go with the cocktail napkin thing. “Eat, Drink and who’s Mary” gets replaced by, “If you love Southern women, raise your glass – if not, raise your standards.” Works year-round, and won’t need to be notated.

Walking my kids to the bus stop Friday, I decide maybe “Last Day” is just that. The Last Day – on the planet. So be it, I won’t have to go to the grocery store. But then suddenly my son says, “I’m so glad it’s the last day.”

I whirl around, “The last day of what? Why is it the last and what did I miss?!”

“Mom, it’s the last day before spring break.”

Geesh. The napkin thing was better.

tcurtis@charlotteobserver.com
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