SpongeBob SquarePants doesn’t always live in Bikini Bottom
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
“Honey, are you missing a ball?” I screamed to him upstairs, while covering the mouthpiece of the phone with my hand.
There was silence for a few moments before he answered.
“Not that I’ve noticed,” he yelled back down. “As far as I can tell, everything is still there.”
“Nope,” I said, returning to the phone. “He’s still intact, although the dogs haven’t been in 10 years.”
The person on the other end of the line was my veterinarian.
“I mean are you missing a ball – like one of those things you throw to your dogs,” she clarified.
For the past month, our big yellow Lab, Weber, has been quite sick and nobody could figure out what in the world was wrong with him. His blood cell counts were way off and while we were able to make some improvements with lots of medications, we still weren’t sure what was the cause.
I stood at the kitchen counter the other evening doling out a fistful of pills. Some had to be taken in the morning, some in the evening, some every three hours, others every four hours and some every other day.
This was in addition to all the heart medication pills that Husband-Head has to take every morning and evening.
But at least I don’t have to stuff his into a hot dog.
“I think I’ll switch careers and just become a pharmacist,” I announced to Husband-Head as I sorted out the multi-colored little pills. “Although, to be honest, I don’t think I’m very good at this.”
My biggest fear was that I was going to give the dog the heart medications and give the Husband-Head the dog’s pills.
And then there is the little matter of remembering if I had given the dog his pills or not. I go into the pantry and can’t even remember why I’m there, for the love of Pete. Instead, I had to make a little note for myself that indicated when the dog needed his next dose.
In the midst of all this, I was naturally a little puzzled when the vet called and wanted to talk about whether we were missing a ball.
“I took some X-rays of his chest and his abdomen,” she informed me. “His chest looks fine, but it looks like there’s a ball in his stomach.”
“Like what kind of ball?” I demanded to know. “A golf ball? A tennis ball? A bowling ball?”
“I’m not sure,” she admitted. “But I think you need to go to a specialist and have it removed.”
My beloved canine companion had already cost me and arm and a leg over the past month and now he needed some expensive surgery.
But he’s our baby, so we made the appointment for the next morning.
The surgery was going to take several hours and I paced around the house waiting to hear the outcome.
Finally, the specialist called.
“The surgery went well and we got it out,” he told me. “Do you want to keep it or not?”
“Well first, why don’t you tell me exactly what ‘it’ is,” I asked curiously.
“It was a SpongeBob SquarePants golf ball,” he said – amazingly without laughing.
For those who aren’t familiar, SpongeBob SquarePants is an animated television cartoon character sponge who lives under the ocean in a city called Bikini Bottom with his buddies Plankton, Mr. Crabs and Squidward.
I knew the nice doctor wasn’t kidding around because I’d seen some of them around the house – the golf balls, not the cartoon characters – and besides, why would somebody make something like that up?
And anyone who has ever been to our house has seen all Husband-Head’s SpongeBob paraphernalia in his mancave, including the refrigerator he painted like a giant SpongeBob, dolls, a mouse pad and other knickknacks.
“Ummm … honey,” I called out to Husband-Head once again. “Are you missing a golf ball?”
“Actually yeah,” he admitted. “One of my three SpongeBob SquarePants golf balls is gone.”
When I told my concerned friends the story about Weber’s illness and subsequent surgery, they were sympathetic, but they all asked the same question.
“Who in the world has a SpongeBob SquarePants golf ball in the first place?” they wanted to know.
Husband-Head. And the dog.
– “Fried Rice” appears every Friday. Heidi Rice is a staff writer and columnist for the Post Independent. She lives in Rifle. Visit her website, http://www.heidirice.com for more columns and her book. Contact Heidi at email@example.com.
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