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    Senior Moments: When you ask ‘How hard can this be?’ and find out
    • July 9, 2023

    How hard can this be?

    I have lived long enough to know whenever I ask myself that question the universe is only too happy to let me know. Today the question involved a teapot wind chime that I was readying to hang on my crepe myrtle tree.

    By readying, I meant carrying it out to the courtyard and hanging it on a branch that faced the front porch swing, my favorite spot to sit and contemplate the world.

    On the way out the front door, the universe intervened when I ever so gently placed the bag containing the wind chime on the porch.

    “You call that gently?” the big U growled at me.

    “How bad can it be?” I replied. I might intervene here to say “How bad can it be?” and “How hard can it be?” evoke the same response from the universe.

    Even through the bubble wrap, I could feel that there were more pieces than I remembered.

    “Get cracking, lady,” Big U barked. “Oh, right you already did that,” he snorted as I lifted the handle which was no longer attached to the teapot.

    “I can fix this.” I barked back at him. Then I asked the fatal question, “How hard can it be?”

    At the breakfast room table with all the pieces assembled in front of me and a bottle of glue in my hand, I would ask that question many times. I finally decided to start with the easiest piece, the teapot handle, so I could find out if the glue held. It went on perfectly and seemed to be holding. I left to take a walk while it solidified. I was humming as I walked, pleased with my progress.

    But the Big U was laughing.

    When I returned the handle was still in place but the teapot was glued to the place mat which was glued to the table, as were several of the broken pieces. The glue bottle, minus the cap I had failed to replace, had tipped over, affixing everything in its path, including my ballpoint pen and half-eaten orange, to the table. At least I know the glue works.

    If you think this little tale does not merit the space it takes up, you might be right. On the other hand, I am often asked how I define a senior moment. The answer is they are the moments of our lives as we age, and what we can learn from them. For example, I now know I have a dysfunctional relationship with glue. How bad can that be?

    Email [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter @patriciabunin and at

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    ​ Orange County Register