Call off the search party! Or maybe keep the party, not the search

Yes, those are my legs. Sorry about that...
Yes, those are my legs. Sorry about that…
You may have noticed I’ve been “missing” from the blog-o-sphere since last Friday. Then again, you may have noticed a weird spot on the kitchen ceiling that could be either maranara sauce or cranberry chutney from Thanksgiving, and therefore completely oblivious to my absence.

And who could blame you?

I had every intention of writing a short post for Friday morning, explaining how I would be off the grid and away for a family reunion (Mine, not just some random family), and how when I got back it would be on a deadline day (today) — which is like walking into the middle of a circus fire.

But I didn’t get the chance to write that post. Instead, I just disappeared without a word and left everyone in state of panic, wondering: My GOD! Will cranberry chutney leave a permanent stain?!?

So, I’d like to offer a sincere apology to everyone for what may have appeared to be a thoughtless act of self indulgence. The truth is, I put a lot of thought into indulging myself. So much so, that I ran out of time to write a post before I left. But I did bring you back a few photos and a short video. There’s also a T-shirt in the mail to all of you from Sun River, Ore.

And by that I mean one T-shirt, so you’ll have to share…

My son and daughter, along with my Mom, moments before a wild squirrel attack.
My son and daughter, along with my Mom, moments before a wild squirrel attack.
Competing in our family’s traditional “Washers” tournament, which is sort of like “Toss Across” with large, metal washers. Yeah, the DeHuff side of th family is a wild bunch…
A group selfie along the Deschutes River, mostly because “Deschutes” (De-shoots) is just fun to say…

Unfortunately, my lovely wife wasn’t able to make it. Having her around always makes things better, so my laughter wasn’t quite as deep, and the beautiful surroundings were a little flat. On the other hand, after seeing me in this golf video wearing socks and sandles because of blisters on my feet, she wouldn’t have wanted to be anywhere near me anyway.

[Warning: Sun glasses are recommended due to the glare from my legs]

Again, my apologies for the disappearance. And also for those legs.

As I mentioned earlier, it’s deadline day. So I really need to pretend like I’m working…



(Ned Hickson is a syndicated columnist with News Media Corporation and a member of the writing team at Long Awkward Pause. His first book, Humor at the Speed of Life, is available from Port Hole Publications, or Barnes & Noble. Disclaimer: Even if you choose Ned’s book for summer reading, you should still use sunscreen.)

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Ned's Blog

I was a journalist, humor columnist, writer and editor at Siuslaw News for 23 years. The next chapter in my own writer’s journey is helping other writers prepare their manuscript for the road ahead. I'm married to the perfect woman, have four great kids, and a tenuous grip on my sanity...

71 thoughts on “Call off the search party! Or maybe keep the party, not the search”

  1. Well, at least the socks weren’t the classic blue-and-yellow stripes at the top, white athletic socks, pulled up to your knees.

  2. Ahhhh, I can feel a release of tension in your writing – analogous to the smooth flawless delivery of the mini-putt ball to the hole. You are on top of your game, in the groove – I feel like the little guy watching with awe from the side of the mini-putt. No doubt the vacation was just the ticket. It may have been the “washers” game – although I’m not sure why you don’t use dryers, they are lighter and don’t require plumbing.

    Fun post Ned, great pics of the family and relatives

    1. I look so forward to these reunions, Paul. And not just to play washers. Although I think you have a point about the dryers. A lot lesss back strain.

  3. Did Skippy stow away in your suitcase? Your family didn’t disown you after the thong video?

    Those are the burning questions of the day.. which reminds me that I have to get that prescription filled….

  4. I want to know how on earth you played washers on concrete! When you play washers, the first thing you do is walk off the distance and dig three holes in a bare patch of dirt for each side. Unless you have some way of making concrete soft enough to dig…. 😜

    1. We have a set of special boxes, with carpeting on top. Each has three holes. You throw from one box, then to the other until someone wins.

      We’re too lazy to dig holes…

  5. All these years, I’ve been calling something completely different “Deschutes”…although the water volume looks the same. Although in my case, the water velocity was a bit more like the firehose scene from Weird Al’s movie “UHF”.

  6. Despite the fact that upon your disappearance we called in the troops to find you, and the blinding legs, and the socks and sandles (Sigh). What the heck is with the “wife beaters?”

    You were missed. The smell of bacon disappeared. Hope you had a great time. Oh and you rock at golf or is that mini golf?

  7. I just love family reunions! As long as it’s not MY family.

    Great video. You look awesome, and I’m not a fan of socks with sandals couture.
    I particularly liked the kid in the background wondering if you had lost your mind…

    1. One of my cousins said it takes a “special” man to carry off wearing socks and sandles like that. But I don’t think her idea of “special” was the same as mine.

      And yes, when I saw that kid while watching the raw video, I knew he was going to be the star…

  8. When you get sick of saying “Deschutes,” you can concentrate on Lake Butte des Morts. (You can say Lake Butt and laugh, but that’s not the correct pronunciation.)

  9. Ned, I’ve been reading the comments and making a note of the thrashing you are taking for wearing socks with your sandals. Your detractors are obviously mis-informed. The Roman Legions – arguably the toughest, meanest, most professional, most successful army that ever walked the face of the earth – wore socks with their war sandals. Their culture was so pervasive that our numberingsystem came from them, even our language is based on their Latin.

    “Rome left cultures, customs, government, politics, and religion, contributions that to this day have greatly influenced Western Civilization. As Rome expanded on the ideas of the past and bettered them, so should the people of this world expand and elaborate on Rome’s genius.” –

    There you have it, you are a man amongst men Ned and wearing socks with your sandals iust just a sign of your manliness and anyone who disagrees should take it up with the Roman Army.

    1. I always love seeing your little typewriter pop up. At the same time, it reminds me I need to spend more time making my ugly mug show up other places 😦

      By the way, absent or not, that camaraderie is always out there in the blogosphere 😉

        1. “Me” time seems to work in cycles, and not always in our favor. I have a tendency to fill my time to quickly with commitments — something I’m trying to get better at NOT doing so I can make time for more poking.

          Wait, that sounded wrong. Or not…

  10. man rule#1 – if you have blisters from sandals, wear flip flops, if no flip flops are available, wear cowboy boots with daisy duke shorts and a crop top as it is less distracting…do not ever…ever wear socks and sandals as the image burns itself onto the retinas of womens eyes and makes it physically impossible for them to consider sex with a man for a minimum period of 3 days after seeing it. you just sock blocked your fellow man, Ned.

    1. Haha! Would it help if I said it was a large pair of socks? Probably not. I suppose it’ll work out OK since it’ll take me three days to find Daisy Dukes…

  11. BAHAHAHA! I don’t even know where to start!
    Congratulations on making that fabulous putt (perhaps, Tiger should stop in for lessons) and for playing that music – a blast from the past! I still have that song in vinyl form.
    not.even.kidding 😉

    (Welcome back – you were missed!)

    1. Thanks, Michelle! Tiger just left, actually. And he didn’t even hit a tree! I love that theme to Kubrick’s film. Whenever I put it on, my wife knows it’s time to play “The Monolith and the Monkey.”

      Yep, “50 Shades” has got nothing on me…

  12. Nice putt! Looks like a great family vacation. We just had ours as well, but didn’t make it to the putt putt place this year. Welcome back and thanks a lot for the t-shirt.

    1. Thanks, Susan! And it’s probably just as well that you didn’t make the putt putt course. When I asked for a driver, everyone left anyway.

      Glad you liked the T-shirt. I’m not sure who gets it next, but I’m sure they’ll be in touch 😉

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