JOPLIN, Mo. —
Finally, they believe me.
Since shortly after we arrived in St. Augustine, Fla., I have been trying to tell my wife and our 15-year-old daughter about the aliens.
“We don’t believe you,” my wife and Emma would say. But I knew the truth. I knew that all of the old people from St. Augustine had been kidnapped and replaced by alien old people from Ontario, Canada.
We were in St. Augustine for spring break. We picked St. Augustine because it’s not a college spring break destination. My wife and I didn’t want to go somewhere where we could see college students throw up on each other. We’re funny that way.
What we didn’t know is that St. Augustine, at least in March, is populated entirely by old people. How old? So old that I was called a “young whippersnapper” at least four times. So old that at least two guys where we were staying referred to our rental car as a “horseless carriage.”
When I shopped at the St. Augustine Winn-Dixie, the bag boys were old guys. So was the clerk at the convenience store where I bought a paper each morning. From what I could tell, the average age of the people in St. Augustine was 87.3, and most of their Social Security cards only had two digits on them.
At first, things seemed normal. All of the old people we ran into on the beach were very active and very friendly. All day long the old people walked up and down the beach. Every once in a while a group of old people would gather and start talking. They would turn around and look at Emma, my wife and me, and then they would start talking to each other again.
“I think they’re talking about us,” I said.
“You’re crazy,“ my wife said.
Later, an old man approached my wife and me.
“Hi,” he said.
I said “hi” back, and then the old guy pointed to the beer in my hand.
“A word of warning,” he said. “They frown on that around here. They will make you pour it out, and they will give you a ticket.”
I thanked the guy and he moved on down the beach looking for more young whippersnappers. At first I thought by “they” the old guy meant the St. Augustine police. But then I realized he meant the aliens from Ontario.
I decided the aliens had to be from Ontario because I saw at least 10 cars with Ontario license plates in the parking lot of the complex where we were staying.
When I told my wife about the license plates, she laughed.
“Emma, your dad thinks we are surrounded by aliens from Ontario,” she said.
“You won’t be laughing when you’re forced to have universal health care and go to hockey games,” I said.
My wife laughed again.
On Thursday morning we stopped in a Starbucks to get some coffee. A young guy was working behind the register.
“Do you know about the aliens?” I asked him.
He looked at me like I was crazy. Then he asked my name, wrote it on a coffee cup and handed it to someone next to him.
“They’re trying to tell me something,” I said.
“They’re trying to tell you that you’re crazy,” my wife said.
Later, in the parking lot, a guy who was loading his car next to ours stopped to let my wife pass so she could get into our car. My wife chatted with the guy for a second, and he recommended a nice place to eat.
“Everyone here is so friendly,” my wife said.
“That’s because they’re aliens,” I said.
My wife laughed and then, all of a sudden, she stopped laughing and started screaming.
“Mike. Look at his car tags. He’s from Ontario!” my wife shouted.
I would tell you more, but I’ve got to stop typing. The hockey game is on.
Do you have an idea for Mike Pound’s column? Call him at 417-623-3480, ext. 7259, or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @mikepoundglobe.
JOPLIN, Mo. —
Finally, they believe me.
- Local News
Cherokee County audit shows $23,000 missing
A special audit of the Cherokee County Treasurer’s Office for 2011 and 2012 shows more than $23,000 is missing from county bank accounts, Cherokee County Commissioner Richard Hilderbrand said Friday.
Burglar gets eight years for pharmacy break-in
A Webb City man pleaded guilty Friday to committing a burglary at Stone’s Corner Pharmacy a year ago and other charges, and was sentenced to eight years in prison.
Mike Pound: It’s time for some football
The arrests, the announced suspensions and the contract disputes can mean only one thing: Somebody is ready for some football.
Appellate court upholds class-action status for Picher residents
An appellate court upheld a 2013 ruling on Thursday that a class-action lawsuit brought by former residents of Picher, Oklahoma, against a Tulsa-based appraisal firm involved with the buyout of property in the city can proceed.
VIDEO: Full of history, one-room schools focus of preservation by local groups
The old Kings Prairie school sits on a narrow Barry County farm road, surrounded by quiet fields and farmland.
1717 Marketplace developer faces more federal charges
The developer of 1717 Marketplace in Joplin has been indicted with more bankruptcy fraud charges, in addition to those leveled against him last year for a series of bank fraud and wire fraud schemes that totaled more than $3.3 million in losses.
Joplin district pursues more money for construction projects
The Joplin Board of Education is proceeding with the sale of $8 million in lease certificates of participation to fund construction projects at the district’s three major rebuild projects.
Landfill opponents seek answers
The Baxter Springs High School auditorium was filled with hundreds of Cherokee County residents Thursday night as Galena city officials answered questions and listened to comments regarding a proposed landfill at Riverton.
Ballot issues dominate GOP event
A maze of campaign yard signs lined the sidewalk at Big Spring Park, leading up to a line of local candidates for public office with rolled-up sleeves shaking hands with potential voters.
Hanaway says leadership missing under Gov. Nixon
When Republican gubernatorial hopeful Catherine Hanaway walked into the banquet room at Granny Shaffer’s Restaurant this week, she was greeted by some of Joplin’s more prominent business leaders.
- More Local News Headlines
- Cherokee County audit shows $23,000 missing