Diane, it is 7:42 AM, and at the risk of sharing a possibly uncomfortable amount of detail regarding my health and well-being, I have a stomach ache and constipation the likes of which I don't believe I have ever experienced. It rivals, but in my current opinion, does not surpass the intestinal distress I endured following that otherwise very enjoyable chili cook-off that Regional Bureau Chief Gordon Cole and I were invited to judge outside of Amarillo, Texas in 1987. You'll remember that one, Diane, it's where I got the sombrero.
As much as I would prefer to blame my current discomfort and inability to leave my room and head down to the Sheriff's station on some exotic Northwestern forest microorganism or on food poisoning transmitted via a ration of tainted proteins or under-ripe produce, I cannot, at least not in any semblance of good conscience.
No, Diane, I am laying on my blessedly comfortable bed here at the Great Northern Hotel on account of weakness. Not, I must point out, weakness of my constitution; as you know, I have a particularly strong stomach for spicy or unusual food, thanks to my extensive travels in the Far East. Unfortunately in this instance, it was a weakness of will and of resolve. You see, last night Sheriff's Department receptionist and all-around nice young woman Lucy Moran threw a pot-luck dinner.
Diane, we in the big city have no idea what a proper pot-luck dinner looks like. I know this now, and am paying the price. The primary culprit of my gastric discomfort being, if I'm not mistaken, the three-- or was it four?-- helpings of the finest mincemeat pie I have ever had the rapture of sampling. Indeed, if this is the way I'm going to go out, I will die a happy, if albeit extremely uncomfortable, man.
I believe I'm going to phone the front desk here at the Great Northern and inquire as to whether someone might procure for me some milk of magnesia, or at least some herbal tea. And tomorrow, I will fast so as to bring my body back to equilibrium.
Lastly, Diane, please call me back with the best way to get rhubarb stains out of white cotton shirts.