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2005-08-29 | 11:59 a.m.

Just woke up from a bad dream. Boy, am I happy to wake up and find that I'm not in all that trouble. But as the dream fades from my freak-out lobe, it occurs to me that I should have known it was a dream all along. Because...

1) Remember that scene in The Graduate where Dustin Hoffman is supposed to be driving back to Berkeley from San Francisco, only he's on the upper deck of the Bay Bridge, and as everybody knows, you can only drive on the lower deck if you're heading to the East Bay from San Francisco? Well, by the same token, if you are driving to Concord from Benicia, you do not have to pay toll. Therefore, Jinx would not have had the opportunity to jump out of the van to pay the toll before I could stop him.

2) Jinx is six years old, and I would never let him drive to Concord, no matter how much trouble I was having with a baby tiger.

3) It is unlikely that I would attempt to transport a baby tiger without a cat carrier. Though, come to think of it, the only cat carrier I own is made of cardboard, which couldn't contain a baby tiger for long. Still, would I have taken in a baby tiger, even if it were running loose, knowing that I would have to go to Concord before I could figure out what to do with it?

OK, maybe I would. But you must admit it's a bit farfetched.

4) Any milk bottle with more than a pinprick aperture, left uncapped on its side between the seat cushions, would have leaked all over the place. That's not just Murphy's Law, that's the law of physics.

5) How did we come to have the tiger's milk bottle, when we found the tiger running loose? That's obviously dream logic.

6) The state does not hire prepubescents to work in its toll collection centers or highway patrol offices.

7) Moving right along, it is not yet a criminal offense, I don't think, to have "Made a bg dl about the troops in Iraq, w/troops in Iraq!!!" Even if I had, which I certainly did not. It was only a single comment, delivered in an even tone of voice, not a "big deal." She obviously did not understand what I was saying.

8) Would a California Highway Patrol officer really be selling jewel-like aphrodisiacs from a wicker basket? Doubtful.

9) Even if I had agreed to babysit an entire student choir, would the director really have stuck me with a violent, mentally incapacitated teen, an unpredictable pit bull, AND a full-grown panther?

10) Even if the Highway Patrol officer was a mother, how could she have known what kind of doll it was in the baby bed? We have tinted windows.

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