Fly Surprise

As strange as the incident in Waikiki was, it wasn’t the first time I had a fly flying in my mouth.  It was actually the second time.  The first time was during my pre-walking “Bunky” period in our modest Red Bank, New Jersey house.  I crawled around the floor like a pre-historic Rumba vacuum cleaner, licking up any scrap that didn’t move.  If I didn’t like the scrap, I would grunt and spit the foul thing out.  I gradually became very choosy about the scraps I licked up.

There was one place that always had good tastes, though.  It was the wooden Coca-Cola case under the kitchen sink.  I guess my parents drank a lot of coke because every day I would find new empty coke bottles in the case.  Of course, the bottles weren’t completely empty—there were always a few drops left inside that I pleasantly sucked into my mouth—always so sweet, and never a bad-tasting drop.  Until one unforgettable day—the day that ended my empty coke bottle sucking forever.


It was a typical afternoon under the sink.  I crawled up to the Coca-Cola case, pulled out an empty bottle, raised it above my head, and pressed it to my lips.  But before I could suck the sweet droplets out, before the cola left the bottle—something else did. And it flew all around in my mouth!  I screamed my head off.  My mother rushed into the room as that something rushed out of my mouth.

“Oh, my poor Bunky,” said my mother as she picked me up, “you had a fly in your mouth.”

I think my first baby word was "fly."

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Robert Red-Baer

1950-Went to Tinton Falls Elementary School, N.J.
1962-Went to Monmouth Regional HS, N.J.
1964-Graduated US Army NCO Acadamy, Germany
1971-Graduated University of Hawaii with honors
1973-Red Heart Follies (Hawaii)
1975-Japan Prime Minister's Award (Video), among many
1985-Professor Edogawa University, Chiba Japan
2010-Retired in Japan