By Bob Huber
Throughout her career as a high school and college teacher, my wife Marilyn saved everything. Her multiple desks — she took over mine among others years ago — were stuffed full of scrawled love notes, chewed pencil stubs, dirty pictures, photos, class albums, and test papers, all taken from her students.
I think she planned to use these items later as blackmail to supplement her retirement income.
Anyway, in one drawer I ran across a huge envelope stuffed with crumpled, yellowed notes. It was titled: “Wild Analogies and Metaphors from High School and College Students, 1956-2001.”
Here are the clean ones:
(Warning: Some of these items are not funny. They’re downright scary!)
• Her face was a perfect oval, like a balloon that had been gently compressed by a Thigh Master.
• His thoughts tumbled in his head like panties in a dryer without Cling Free.
• He spoke with the wisdom that can only come from experience, like a guy who looked at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it and now stumbles around the country warning high school kids about the dangers of looking at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it.
• She grew on him like he was a room-temperature slice of Canadian beef and she was a colony of E-coli.
• She had a deep, throaty laugh like the sound of a dog just before it throws up.
• He was tall as a 6-foot-3-inch tree.
• His wife’s infidelity came as a shock, like a hike in the surcharge of an ATM machine.
• The little boat gently drifted across the pond, exactly the opposite of a bowling ball.
• He fell 12 stories, hitting the pavement like a Hefty bag filled with vegetable soup.
• The scene had a surreal quality, like when you’re in a strange city and the news comes on at 5 p.m. instead of 6 p.m.
• Her hair glistened in the rain like a nose hair after a sneeze.
• The hailstones leaped from the road, like maggots when you fry them.
• Long separated, the star-crossed lovers raced across the grassy field toward each other like two freight trains, one having left Cleveland at 6:30 p.m. traveling at 5 mph, the other from Topeka at 4:l9 p.m. at a speed of 3 mph.
• They lived in a suburban neighborhood with picket fences that resembled Nancy Kerrigan’s teeth.
• He fell for her like his heart was a mob informant and she was the East River.
• Grandpa had a mind like a steel trap, but it was left outside and rusted shut.
• Mad cow disease is like the herd shot round the world.
• Shots rang out, as shots are wont to do.
• The plan was simple, like my brother-in-law. It would never work.
• He had a hungry look, the kind you get from not eating for a while.
• He was lame as a duck — not the metaphorical duck, but a real duck that was actually lame, like from stepping on a land mine or something.
• The ballerina stood gracefully “en pointe” and extended her leg, like a dog at a fire hydrant.
• It was an American tradition, like fathers abandoning their kids at shopping malls or chasing them with power tools.
• He loved her deeply. When she spoke, he heard bells, like a garbage truck backing up.
• Her eyes were like limpid pools, but someone forgot to put in the pH cleanser.
• It hurt like the way your tongue stings after you accidentally staple it to your desk.
• He was tall, dark, and on probation.
Bob Huber is a retired journalist living in Portales.