For Starters…

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Coffee tables are little pieces of hell. I mean, they class up a room and everything. They make lazy Sundays a lot easier. You just stretch your hand and scoop some popcorn. Then you stretch it and find that ice cold glass of something. Then you stretch it and find the remote. So much stretching… I don’t really know why anyone would call you a couch potato!

The commercial comes on, and you figure it’s time for a quick bathroom break. You get up, and then wham! Damn table catches your little toe! It hits like an imploding laser beam. Time stops. Sirens blare. You want to scream, but the pain keeps your lips frozen in place. You grip your wounded foot. You whimper. You hum a little song. You whistle a tune. You dance a jig. You are an artist and the universe pays you homage.

If you were lucky, you would have no audience. Pain this raw, should be endured far away from those irritating words of sympathy. But you’ve already established your lack of luck. Damn table just keeps getting in the way, And your poor toe takes all the heat.

“Again!”  A voice chides.

Like you need a reminder that the same toe suffered the same fate a few short hours ago! Third time today, but who the hell is counting! You can hear the mirth in their voices, and you grit your teeth. You know it’s kind of funny. But right now, you need to be mad at someone else. You are grateful, when an ice cube touches your skin.

You settle back into your recliner – the bathroom break will have to wait. You should probably push the table away. But the tiny samosas have just arrived. You reach out and pick one. You sink your teeth into it and a different sensation takes over. Your mind explodes from the sheer play of that samosa on your taste buds. The pain is soon forgotten. You need ten more of these little treats. But you get only two. Your tummy is revving to go.

Meanwhile, you are recovered enough to talk about your toe incidents. “It’s always the same toe!” You laugh. The others laugh too. No one states the obvious – the table is too close. They are too busy munching samosas.

You’re soon reminded of your overdue bathroom visit. You swing your legs off the sofa and…yap! Lightning really does strike repeatedly. Same toe, same coffee table. Like seriously? What does this damn table have against you? You perform your routine backwards – you’re practically a pro now. You don’t even care about your audience, the toe feels fractured.

You’ve finally had enough. “We have to move the table a bit.” You say. And just like that, the table is moved. It took you long enough to make that game changing move. The food arrives. Bowls and bowls of the really good stuff. Golden brown crusts and tender soft meats.  My, oh my…

You swing your legs every which way. You delve into dish after dish. The tastes are phenomenal; the hunger pangs are soon subdued. The little samosas couldn’t possibly have done what the layered chapattis have done.

You now know, what the early bird has always known – The worm is merely a tasty starter. Enjoy it, but don’t get too comfortable. There’s bigger prey to catch.

And the pain? Well, that too can be a starter – a tiny nugget of suffering that wets your appetite for better; or a seven course pity party…your menu!



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  1. Oh you said it. Been waiting for you to expose these little critters, the coffee tables. Thank you Martha. The age old war between my nemesis, the coffee tables and my shin is yet to be worn. The coffee tables are one sturdy bunch, especially the low riders. Hahaha.

  2. It is always strange that you actually are certain of the exact position of the table…. and you literally can calculate your steps with your eyes closed…..and then wham! That pain can make you lose your appetite I say…… hahahahaha. Always wondered why my tiny toe nail is dark in colour…… sigh

  3. I’ll be quick to learn my lessons… that coffee table won’t fracture my toe much longer… I’d rather push out the table all together

  4. hey Martha, great stuff again. at least now you know that you are not alone; some toes have turned dark cos of that age old battle. @Joules, sorry.

  5. Coffee table and the toes….is the worst pain ever. I dont know why….i always realise I could have avoided it but failed. I always set them as far as can but still one day….it has to get me.
    Thank u

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