April 25, 1949 – Nov. 27, 2005
I loved her column and her imagination (which I felt was just as overactive as my own) and now she is gone.
Here’s to you, Agnes. I feel like I’ve lost a good neighbor.
So, there I was, being swept along in this herd of heifers who had dressed themselves to attract attention of any and all kinds. I have never seen so many Women wearing white dresses and no underwear in my life —- and I have lived in Los Angeles.
“The issue of undress must be addressed,” July 27, 2003
One consolation for me is that my routine is so basic and uneventful that by now, if something is watching, it is grinding its teeth with boredom.
“Inside that cash register, someone is watching,” Aug. 3, 2003
What is the deal on having food-scented soaps and candles in the bathroom? Chocolate-brownie-scented candles in the bathroom. How is your digestive system supposed to act when you’re signaling it on both ends?
“Assault on the scent-ses is food for thought,” Aug. 23, 2003
I guess men are entitled to equal time with women. After all, the gamboling guys are no worse than the ad showing a girl wrestling a dispenser for a tampon.
Or the woman who is apparently out on a romantic date in a rowboat on a lake when the craft begins to sink. She conveniently —- and, amazingly, to me —- whips a 24-pack box out of her purse and uses one to plug the leak and save the day.
Now there’s a romantic setting. You, a gorgeous date and a bloated feminine product squishing at your feet.
“Erectile dysfunction ads elicit horror, humor,” Mar. 27, 2004
Once, while on assignment, I tossed my purse down on a chair and moved away. A lady asked me, “Aren’t you afraid someone might grab it and run?”
No worries. First, I seldom carry money in it, other than the aforementioned change. And second, I believe it would be easy enough to find the perpetrator. Go directly to the nearest hospital emergency room and ask for a man who recently arrived stooped over and complaining of a severe hernia, and voila, we have our guy.
“At home with her purse: Always room for one more,” Sept. 25, 2004
Well, laugh all you want to. But remember this:
There are three kinds of people in this world:
People who believe in werewolves.
People who don’t believe in werewolves.
“When the going gets scary, there are rules to be followed,” Oct. 30, 2004
And then there was the time another sales associate, who was apparently more interested in associating than making sales, stood chatting on the phone until a customer —- other than myself —- walked up. The clerk rushed over and offered to help the newcomer. I turned to the recent arrival and said, “Excuse me, would you do me a favor, please? Would you look to your right and see if there’s a tall, queen-sized black woman standing next to you?”
“The Invisible Woman,” Jan. 3, 2005
Lord have mercy.
The Girl Scout cookies have arrived.
Judging by the rapidly growing pile of boxes on my desk, I must have said yes to everyone who asked me.
“Cute kids bearing cookies – who can resist?,” Mar. 2, 2005
“You know, mom,” I said. “Just because I’m on my own doesn’t mean you can’t give your opinion about the things I tell you.”
“You’re grown,” she said. “You don’t need me to tell you anything.”
“It’s like this,” I said. “My life is like a corporation. I’m CEO now, but you’re not fired. I’m kicking you upstairs. You can be the President of the Board of Advisors. I expect to consult you on all important decisions. I’m the major stockholder, but I’ll always at least listen to your opinion.”
She was thoughtful for a long moment, then said, “When you get to Montreal, don’t share a room with (so-and-so,) and you stay with the group, you hear.”
I was tempted to laugh, wondering how she had held it in for so long.
“Yes ma’am,” I said. “I’ll be careful.”
“Think twice before firing mom from your life,” May 4, 2005
Mindful that these concrete parking mazes are favorite hideouts for werewolves and vampires, I dug out my keys as soon as I got on the elevator.
As I walked toward the space where I had parked, the ceiling light over it promptly went off. Apparently, it was the kind that polices itself to conserve energy.
Or maybe that’s just what The Boogeyman wanted me to believe.
“You say paranoia, I say vigilance,” May 16, 2005
Now remember, you’re talking to a person who firmly believes that camping out means staying in a hotel room with no coffee pot.
“She decamps in the hunt for comfort,” June 4, 2005
Suddenly I was struck in the face with the equivalent of a horse’s tail.
I turned to my right in time to see a young blonde gathering her locks for another shot.
Running her fingers through her hair, she gathered strands in her fist, wound up her neck, flexed right and —– thwack. Pop goes the Agnes.
“Public grooming’s a flipping nuisance,” July 23, 2005
I’m not saying it’s a bad thing to do.
It just looks funny, that’s all. And highly entertaining.
I can hardly wait for the trend of chest-bumping to gain popularity.
“You can’t deep-six the high five,” Oct. 24, 2005
Suddenly this fool leaned into the open roof of the car and grabbed my purse. In front of a police station, no less.
Don’t ask me why, because I’m sure I don’t know —- I grabbed the front of his shirt and held on.
She powered through the gears and took off, with him flailing in the opening like a hooked trout. I was afraid to let go lest he fall and be killed by the oncoming traffic. I was angry, but not that angry.
She didn’t drive far. Just enough to have him hollering for his mama.
“Darkness brings danger,” Nov. 7, 2005
Andrew Phelps remembers Agnes.
Agnes’ LA Times obituary.
Is this a hug or am I being squashed like a bug? (a tribute by former coworker Scott Reeder)