Last fall, we drove to Goose Creek, South Carolina to visit my elderly aunt for her birthday. I didn’t want to go, but Jamie insisted it was the right thing to do.
We left town at ten o’clock in the evening to avoid traffic. I brought along an extra large thermos of coffee to help me stay alert through the night. And, I did more than stay alert. After tossing back three cups, I was singing back-up for Willie Nelson, playing drum solos on the steering wheel.
By the time we reached Yulee, Georgia I’d consumed six cups total, and had pulled over to pee seventy times. Jamie slept in the seat beside me, her mouth gaped open. To entertain myself, I placed a penny in her open mouth. One, then another. When I got to twelve cents, she woke up.
And that’s how I lost my right molar.
Seven in the morning: we rolled through Savannah, Georgia. I looked into the visor mirror. My eyes were bloodshot, I’d lost almost five pounds, and I had to pee like Seabiscuit.
I should’ve pulled over, but I didn’t. We were making good time.
When we arrived in Goose Creek, I was up to eleven cups of coffee altogether. I was a human water-balloon. I bounced my knees up and down, but it did no good. I was about to start leaking.
When we finally pulled into my aunt’s driveway, she and my cousins tore off the front porch to take turns squeezing me. And oh, how they squeezed.
Until they were sorry.