Timeline of a Man Cold


What’s scarier than a sick kid? A sick husband!

Day 1:  The sneeze.  The husband gives a worried glance and feels his forehead with the back of his hand.  He immediately begins taking large quantities of zync, Vitamin C, Theraflu, the boiled root of an African Baobab tree, essence of dung beetle oil, and Himalayan yodeling goat curd to stave off a possible Man Cold.

Day 2:  Husband develops a sore throat and stuffy nose but has no fever.  He takes to his bed and cancels all meetings and other business for the day.  His physician is consulted who diagnoses his condition as a common cold.  Unsatisfied with that diagnosis, husband consults WebMD and decides that he suffers instead from either Acute Invasive Asian Fungal Sinusitis or Fermented Shark Poisoning.

Day 3:  The cough.  Husband coughs a second time and then immediately contacts attorney to begin drawing up a new Will (leaving out doting wife who mistakenly brought home the wrong kind of chicken soup).  Husband’s mother is brought in to replace wife and make homemade chicken soup just like when he was a kid and say, “there, there.”

Day 4:  The CDC is called and placed on notice that a possible Man Cold pandemic might be on the horizon.  Quarantine tape is wrapped around the infected bedroom and NASA decontamination units are delivered for the other family members.  Anticipating widespread panic, the Governor declares a state of emergency and the National Guard is called in.  A team of Golden Retriever therapy puppies is brought in to help residents deal with their stress.

Day 5:  The Husband’s symptoms begin to wane.  He rises from the bed and asks how many weeks have passed since he became ill.

Day 6:  Husband’s Man Cold is almost entirely gone.  The quarantine tape is removed and the therapy puppies are sent home.  Husband says, it wasn’t so bad.  Wife is indicted by a grand jury for attempted murder.

Day 7:  Wife sneezes.



Filed under Husbands and other Aliens

My (or not my) Final Resting Place

headstone“Hello?” I said, answering the phone.

“Hi, Mrs. Berkman?” said the voice on the other end.


“It’s Beckerman.”

“Oh. I have Berkman here.  Must be a mistake.”

“Can I help you?”

“Yes, I’m thrilled to tell you that you’ve won a free upgrade on your final resting place.”

“Excuse me?”

“You purchased a plot in a section of our cemetery called Heaven’s Gate which is close to the road and we have upgraded you to a section of the cemetery called Rainbow’s End next to a babbling brook.”

“I don’t own a cemetery plot.”

“Well, maybe your husband bought it for you.”

“I can’t even get him to buy me flowers for my birthday. I don’t think he bought me a cemetery plot.”

“It says right here that the plot is in the name of Tracy Berkman.”

“I’m not Tracy Berkman. I’m Tracy Beckerman.”

“Must be a typo.”

“I don’t think so.”

“Well, Rainbow’s End is a lovely location for a final resting place. It’s much nicer to be next to the brook than the road.”

“If I’m dead, why would it matter to me if I’m next to the road or next to the babbling brook?”

“It’s nicer for the people who visit you.”

“Who, the Berkmans?”


“Cuz I don’t think they would really care if they are visiting me next to a road or next to a brook if I’m not the person who is supposed to be buried there.”

“Who is supposed to be buried there?”

“Apparently someone named Tracy Berkman.”

“Isn’t that you?”

“No.  And I don’t own a plot in Heaven’s Gate next to a road in your cemetery or any other cemetery.”

“Well, you really should think about purchasing one.  You don’t want to leave that decision to your grieving relatives.  We actually have some lovely plots available at very reasonable prices.”

“How much?”

“Starting at $4500.”

“Wow! Good thing then that I already own one. You know, me… Tracy Berkman.”

“I thought you said it wasn’t you.”

“I’ll take that secret to the grave.”


©2016, Beckerman. All rights reserved.

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