Dick MacKenzie - Editor
I was sitting in a Thunder Bay hospital waiting room last week while Mary was having some tests performed somewhere down the hallway.
After checking my emails and Facebook, I grabbed a random magazine from the table beside me.
Partway through a half-hearted fluttering of pages my eyes lit up and my heart skipped a few beats as a recipe for cheddar scallop cakes shouted out.
I took a look, imagined the smells and delights awaiting when I could get home to give it a try.
It was with no small amount of guilt that I started plotting how I could quietly, secretly rip the page out of the magazine and stuff it quickly into my back pocket without anyone in the roomful of sick people catching me.
I decided finally to wait until the room got emptier, or until Mary came back and we had to leave. At that point, as a last resort, I planned to implement the ol’ rip and run manoeuver, right after telling Mary, “Go on ahead. I’ll catch up.”
I set the magazine on top of my jacket that was folded neatly on the chair beside me and picked a different magazine from the table and pretended to be reading it while secretly waiting for my chance to tear my recipe out.
Well, wouldn’t you know it. A big woman in a wheelchair had the milquetoast guy pushing her park right beside my table, where she picked herself a magazine while instructing her companion to go fetch a National Geographic from across the room.
The way the wheelchair lady was going through magazines made me nervous so I kept a good eye on the mag beside me that held the recipe I was drooling over - page open and ready to rip in a split second.
Soon it happened. “Give me that one,” she instructed, pointing to my treasure.
And then, smiling right in my face, she asked, “Is that one yours?”
“No. Go ahead,” I smiled back as my heart dropped into my boots.
During the next few minutes I plotted and planned how I could get that damn recipe. Then I overheard the woman comment to her man, “You know, I’ve never eaten a scallop.”
She had the magazine open to page 10. My cheddar scallop cake recipe!
Thinking quickly, I leaned over and asked if I might have the magazine back for a moment. When she handed it to me, I immediately scurried over to an empty chair out of the glare from the overhead lights, smoothed page 10, and took a picture.
As I returned the magazine to the woman who had never eaten a scallop, I said, “I hope you have a scallop someday.”
Feeling bad for the old, little meek guy who was with her, I suggested, very gently and friendly-like, with a quick conspiratorial wink at Milquetoast, “You should buy your husband a big barbeque.”