Only on Vashon – The Weekly Rundown 1/7/22

We’ve revived a post from two years ago complaining about people whistling off key in Granny’s.

Many of us love to whistle and sing in public. We cite the old saying,  “Sing like no one’s watching, dance like no one’s listening, just assume no one is ever paying attention to you ever.” This philosophy is either liberating or deeply lonely, I can’t decide. 

We’re reminded that some people are sensitive to certain noises, especially high pitched ones. The high notes on a saxophone make me twitch, but if someone were playing “I Will Always Love You” on the saxophone in Granny’s, I’d just walk in a different direction. 

We speculate that maybe some people just don’t like seeing public displays of happiness. This is such a heartbreaking and grim assessment of modern life.

Luckily, we see plenty of examples of people being publicly miserable. And we can use a few simple life hacks to induce misery in others. For example, if you’re driving, simply don’t use your turn signal! (I thought that we could leave complaining about driving behind us in the old year, but we’re still doing it. You guessed it, we’re complaining about people not using turn signals again.)

But wait, what if there are cases where we shouldn’t use turn signals? Sometimes you need to enter stealth mode in your car. Like when you’re on I5. If you put on your blinker to change lanes, the cars in the lane over just speed up so you can’t get in. Best not to signal then. checkmate. 

And speaking of making people miserable, someone thinks we’ll trigger PTSD if we wear masks after the pandemic is over. 

I have a few thoughts on that.

1. It will never be over.

2. Have you ever been in a subway station, and the subway car pulls up, and the windows are clouded from the humidity that they’re dripping, and then the doors open and it’s crammed full of people? That humidity is people’s breath. It’s all breath! So gross!  We should wear masks on public transit forever.

3. My face is ugly. I’m doing this for you.

How I plan to dress on the bus from now on

A deer unicorn has been spotted. What is a deer unicorn? It’s an asymmetrical buck with just one antler. 

The islander didn’t get a picture of the cryptid, so they made this image to give us a sense of what they saw. 


How did this come to pass? Usually it’s because bucks shed their antlers one at a time. 

But there are other possibilities. One islander, who seems to be an expert observer of deer as evidenced by the fact that they name the deer in their backyard, described how bucks tussle and sometimes lose an antler that way. (If you’re wondering, the mom dear in their yard is named Elsie and she rams her kids if they’re playing too rough.) 

But if the unicorn deer was seen on the north end, it might be the guy who injured one antler in his youth, and it never grew back. I wonder if anyone’s named him yet? If not, dibs on naming him. He’s Butterball now.

Okay, now that we’ve cleared up how a deer becomes a unicorn, that leaves the question of how magical they are. One islander tells us, “Most of the magic stays in the deer but a small portion remains in the antlers when they fall off so it’s pretty precious when one finds some.“

We are informed that there’s a slide blocking the offloading lane of the north end ferry dock. 

Apparently they meant a landslide, but I pictured the bouncy slide from the Strawberry Festival. It turns out I wasn’t the only one. Thanks to an an intrepid islander with photoshop skills, we have this artist’s rendition: 

This should cut down on boat loading times.

Turns out the truth is not so fun:

Not even a little bouncy

We give a shout-out to the people who get a call in the middle of the night and go out to deal with the mudslides. We appreciate you. 

And speaking of fallout from all the rain, Quartermaster is flooded. 

We’ve gone a bit stir-crazy from all the snow. Most of us stayed home, even if our pets were dangerously low on crickets. Some of us ventured out and promptly slid into ditches. A few dauntless islanders did donuts in the Vashon Island Community Church parking lot, which roughed up the lawn.

In the comments, someone pointed out how out-of-control the youth of today have gotten. When we were kids, we had the good sense to do donuts in empty school parking lots so we didn’t damage private property. 

Finally, here’s goats eating your old Christmas trees.

Anna Shomsky
Author: Anna Shomsky

I'm a former teacher and a data engineer living on Vashon Island. My writing has appeared in Five on the Fifth, Women on Writing and on the Post-Culture Podcast. I wrote and produced the radio show Whispers of Vashon for 101.9 KVSH. I’ve had short stories published in the anthologies Island Stories and Chicken Scratchings, as well as through the Open Space Literary Project.

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