FOR SALE: My landline phone. The phone company looks upon the in-house models as antiques that they’d rather not mess with. Their mantra, “We’ll get to you sometime this season … or next. Heck, just get an iPhone and stop bothering us.”
FOR RENT: The strip of lawn between my house and the road. At certain seasons of the year, my lawn is the only piece of geography without a campaign sign, yard sale placard or raffle ticket promotion. My bare spot makes it look like I don’t believe in anything. And I’m still trying to figure out the philosophy behind campaign signs stuck in yards unless it’s simply a way to irritate your neighbors who belong to the other political party. In my entire life I’ve never known anyone who has chosen a candidate by cruising the neighborhood to see who had the most signs.
WANTED: Someone to save me a parking place on the square. There’s now a time limit on how long you can park you car there but I’ve not seen any restriction on people wanting to pitch a tent overnight to save me a spot.
YARD SALE: No, I don’t have any household goods or clothing to sell you. I’m simply selling off a piece of my yard that seems to stretch halfway to Chapin. When my lawn-mowing guy takes off west, I send a sack lunch with him in case he doesn’t make it back before sundown.
WANTED: The instruction booklet for the game of “Where are they blocking off Morton Today?” It’s a fun game, but I seem to have misplaced my list of clues designed then hidden by the Illinois Department of Transportation. My car does have some sort of built-in homing device that brings me face-to-face with road construction no matter which route I choose.
WANTED TO BUY: A work schedule and location of the traffic cops in Ashland, Bath and Dosh.
WANTED TO BUY: The hidden and secret traffic pattern of traffic exiting to Morton Avenue where the cars heading out of Home Depot, County Market and Jacksonville Savings Bank all converge into one confusing conversation of “You go,” “No, you go,” “Do I have the right of way?” and “Let’s all go at once!”
PRICE REDUCED: In order to supplement my meager teacher’s retirement, I sold the farm and bought several truckloads of golf carts to be driven on the streets of South Jacksonville. Bummer.
HELP WANTED: Using a cooking stove for the first time in 40 years I’ve started baking cookies and still can’t find a way of getting my top done without burning my bottom. Apply with potholder.
WANTED: The home phone number of the little fellow with the Mid-Eastern accent who calls me at suppertime to tell me that I’m being investigated by the IRS and that agents are now approaching my home with an arrest warrant which will be served unless I give him my credit card number. I just want to find out what he’s having for supper tonight. In fact, I may call him again tomorrow … and the next day, and the next.
LOST: That thing-a-ma-bob that goes on the bottom of the what-cha-ma-call-it on the underneath side of the doo-dad on my cable TV box. I called the cable company, but they didn’t seem to know what I was talking about.
FOUND: In my yard shortly after moving to Jacksonville, the handle off a small bicycle. I keep looking out the window for some youngster weaving madly out of control coming down Sandusky, but so far, nothing.
FOR SALE: A parking permit for events at Illinois College. That’s the good news. The bad news is that the closest parking is in Murrayville.
WANTED: Someone to help me cross the traffic on the downtown square after dark. Some of the drivers regard the pedestrian lanes as bull’s-eyes and I not as quick as I used to be.
WANTED: A glow in the dark tracksuit, in case no one answers the above ad.
FOUND: A Midwest town with great eateries, stock car races, a county fair, Oktoberfest, plenty of shopping, block upon block of history, ice cream socials, steam shows, Chautauquas, Dancing with the Stars, downtown concerts, art galleries, a great hospital, arts balls, bass tournaments, three colleges, auto shows and more theater, movies, dance, music, golf, baseball and good-time venues than towns twice our size. Apply at the office of any local realtor.