A Smile and a Memory

It's been one year today since Alison died. A lot has happened since then, and it still makes me sad that she never got to meet Veda -- not on the outside, anyway (She did say hello through Penelope's belly once or twice, which was fun), but I can say that now I'm back to smiling when I think of her... most of the time at least.

The memory that made me smile today was this one.

We're grilling hot dogs, a few summers ago. (This was before Penny and I went vegetarian, but after A-Rod -- what I always liked to call her -- had been diagnosed. She was in a round of chemotherapy, most likely, or perhaps just on her incredible regimen of pills and potions, and feeling pretty okay, all things considered.) We're bringing in the 'dogs from the back patio, and somebody notices that the last one got pretty overcooked. It's just a black little squiggle, really, there on the plate, and while Tom and Penny and I start looking at each other and debating who's to blame, I comment that I read an article recently, on just this topic.

"Apparently it's bad news," I say. "The article said something about the nitrates or something, the synthetic whatevers are in hot dogs, that when it gets scorched on the grill it forms these compounds that are supposed to give you cancer."

Without missing a beat, Alison says, "Oh, well then give that one to me. I've already got it."

I laughed so hard I almost spilled my beer.


I miss her still, but today I'm smiling. Good one, A-Rod.

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