Laughing at the Handicapped

I called my friend Edward tonight, and we laughed and laughed. We laughed about his girlfriend Helene, who died of cancer, about her writing people into her will in her last days and then writing them out. Helene cheated Edward out of thousands of dollars and took possession of the house they had worked for years to buy.

We laughed about his old boss Betty, the CEO of a foundation called Betty’s Dream, who had a tiny shrunken body and was ‘basically a head’ and made life hell for her employees, principally Edward, who was the executive director.

I still crack up at the very mention of her hame.

And we laughed about the late Ray Burton, whom we all loved dearly, but who did make some inappropriate advances toward an intern for the North Country Historical Foundation that we had to get the other trustees, two elderly ladies, to overlook.

At that point, any one of us could have created a scandal, but, take my word for it, there was no harm done. It was just one of those incredibly funny situations.

We laughed and laughed about human foibles. God knows we all have them. But they’re so funnY!

Edward has metastatic cancer, which is bad, but whenever I call him, he is very much himself, which is good. We laugh and laugh. I told him I’m not ready to say goodbye, so he has to stick around.

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Steve Hartshorne
Stephen Hartshorne worked in newspapers and magazines around New England for many years and served as Information Officer in the New Hampshire Senate under Senate President Vesta Roy. He worked as a material handler for nine years at the Yankee Candle Company until the company was taken over by corporate weasels. He is currently the associate editor of, an alternative travel website, which gives him the opportunity to correspond with writers and photographers all over the world. He lives in Sunderland, Massachusetts. This blog is dedicated to his mom, who made him bookish.
Steve Hartshorne

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