(Editor’s note: to my buddy Angel…thank you, thank you.)

Mary, much to the surprise of her family and friends, to say nothing of her doctor and the medical profession in general, had a little lamb. The surprise of her delivery of the small creature was further compounded by the fact that she had been expecting an alpaca.

However, the song doesn’t work near as well as “Mary had a little alpaca, little alpaca, little alpaca”; in wanting to give Sarah Josepha Hale, the lady who wrote the poem on which the song was based, a workable rhyming scheme, Ma Nature provided Mary with a lamb instead.

The father of the lamb has never been determined and conjecture on the subject at this juncture would be pointless and inappropriate, given that the song was written in 1830, putting the issue WAY past the statute of limitations for filing a paternity suit.

Now that I have that out of the way, I would like get on with this week’s post.

In addition to my duties and responsibilities as the Captain and Master of the good ship Lollipop, er, excuse me, the good ship the R U Kidding, I am also employed by the Publix Supermarkets chain of grocery stores as a part-time Front Service Clerk, which as I have said on a number of occasions is a ten dollar title for a three dollar job; a much more accurate (and earthy) description of my job is “bagger”. As such, I have from time to time browbeaten a number of my fellow “Associates” (more corporate jargon) into reading the Welcome Aboard The R U Kidding blog, and periodically, mostly to shut me up I suspect, they have done so. And periodically, they have provided me with feedback on what a spectacular, top-notch job I’m doing as a “humor blogger”. None of them has ever told me, geez, you really suck as a writer; whether their lack of criticism is from politeness or reticence I have no clue, but I’m grateful nonetheless.

This past Saturday, in a short break between customers, my good friend and fellow co-worker, an extra-special lady named Angel who reads “the Cap’n” from time to time, exclaimed to me rather breathlessly that she had really enjoyed reading my post from back on 2/20 and that “the ending made me laugh right out loud”. Of course, having been raised properly, I immediately thanked her and then offered her ten bucks, which she declined, saying that $5 would be plenty. (Actually, she said that a buck three eighty-five would be sufficient, but I didn’t want either of us to appear cheap.)

After we gotten the negotiations out of the way, I told her how much I appreciated her kind words and that she had, inadvertently, stumbled onto the very reason why I write the WATRUK blog, that is, to give my readers a few minutes of what I hope is a humorous tale each week that causes them to forget the world and its tribulations for a brief time and just have a good laugh; that I had succeeded in doing this for Angel was, for me, a major achievement. We got busy again right about that time and I didn’t have the chance to follow-up with her and ask her to do something for me, something that I am now going to ask all of you.

In fact, I’m going to beg, although not down on one knee…this isn’t a proposal of matrimony.

Please, please, please, if you enjoy “the Cap’n”, if the stories and reports and all the rampant frivolity you see here on the WATRUK website gives you a moment of laughter or makes you think in a different way about some subject I’ve written about, please, please, share your good fortune with the people you know or who you think would benefit from a good dose of “Cap’nisms”.

Please share with your family, your friends, your co-workers, your workout partner, the members of your church, your yoga class, your therapist, your gynecologist (if I had to stare at ladies’ you-know-whats all day long I know I’d sure as hell need a good laugh now and again), your buddies down at your fave bar, your ex-mother-in-law, who hopefully isn’t as surly as mine was, your neighbors, anyone you feel might think, hey, this Cap’n John guy is pretty funny, in a convoluted and occasionally disgusting way.

I so desperately want the WATRUK blog to succeed, not for any monetary gain that I might realize, although that would be nice, but because I truly believe in what I’m doing here; in a world fraught with wars, killings, strife, Donald Trump, hunger, pollution, Donald Trump, disease, slavery, hatred, Donald Trump, racism, the Houston Astros, horrors unimaginable and human fuckery of every stripe and kind, if I can provide a few moments of humor, of good cheer, a brief respite from their day-to-day worries for my loyal readers, I have seen my duty and doed it.

Please, please share the good news of the Welcome Aboard The R U Kidding blog and Cap’n John.

Please, please, please.

You can follow “the Cap’n” on Facebook, on Twitter and on Instagram; I post a new column every Thursday, and announce it that same day on all of the above.

My friend Angel is a positive, upbeat person who loves to laugh, does so easily and is a joy to be around, so to thank her again for her support and kind words, later that same day I told her the following story…

I ran into my downstairs neighbor out walking her dog one day several weeks ago, here at the Torpid Whales Senior Living Complex, and she mentioned to me that Mitzi, her dog, seemed to having some trouble recently with her hearing and that she had an appointment to take her to the vet the next day. I wished her luck and asked her to let me know how it went.

Several days later I ran into them again, and asked my neighbor what the vet had told her about Mitzi. Oh, she said, you won’t believe what happened.

She went on to tell me that when she explained the problem to her vet, the man opined that it looked like Mitzi just had too much hair in her ears and that it was an easy thing to cure. He took a bottle of Nair out from under a cabinet, put a little on a Q-tip and applied it to Mitzi’s ears, let it set a few minutes and then cleaned it out. Mitzi immediately responded in a way that indicated that, sure enough, she could hear a great deal better. The vet told my neighbor to do this for the dog every few weeks and that she should be fine.

So my friend tells me that, on the way home from the vet’s office, she stopped at a local pharmacy. She approached one of the clerks and asked the lady where she could find Nair, and the lady directed her to the correct aisle. When she got to the front counter with her purchase, the same clerk asked her if she was familiar with the product, and when my neighbor said, no, not really, the helpful lady told her that, if she was going to use the product on her legs that she wouldn’t need to, and shouldn’t, shave for at least 4-5 days afterwards. Oh no, my friend said, I’m not going to use it on my legs. Before she could say anything further, the clerk said, oh well, if you’re going to use it on your underarms, same thing, no shaving for several days. Oh no, said my neighbor, I’m going to use it on my Schnauzer.

Oh, said the pharmacy lady, then you’ll need to stay off your bike for at least a week.

(Insert rim-shot here.)

Remember, if you don’t share “the Cap’n” with all the people you know, you’re depriving them of hearing about my neighbor and her Schnauzer, among other things.

You guys are the best…thank you, thank you.

Love and little lambs,

Cap’n John