It hit me not long ago that I write this column every week under the impression that no one really reads it. I mean, you don’t care that I woke up this morning with an uncontrollable muscular twitch in my left eyelid, which means, I assume, that it is now on its way to matching my other eye, which is permanently lazy. You don’t care that in the midst of all this, before the sun was up, my cat began clawing my head as a means of persuading me to get out of the bed and lay out the Fancy Feast breakfast, only to take one look at it, walk away, get back in the bed, and, literally, stick her tongue out at me. I don’t even care. She does that all the time. I’m too concerned with trying to figure out which force of nature or fate caused me to go out and buy a new crock pot -- and be very excited about it -- and then run over it in the driveway upon arriving home. Fortunately, I then remembered I already have one and haven’t used it in, oh, 10 years. So because you don’t care about any of this and neither do I and therefore I assume no one is reading this, I am always tempted to just toss in things that aren’t true to see if anyone catches them. Something that is true, and which I greeted with a great deal of delight, was a recent front-page newspaper headline that contained the words “Putin” and “missile shield.” Am I the only one juvenile enough to find this exciting? And then there was this passage from the article: President Bush and Russian president Vladimir Putin agreed Sunday to link discussions of a U.S. missile defense system with the prospect of large cuts in both nuclear arsenals, hinting that if the accord is reached quickly it might give the two more time together to dress up like Carol Burnett and Vicky Lawrence and hit the Moscow nightclub circuit, drinking vodka shooters all night while entertaining the crowds with their ad lib comedy skits from the popular television show Mama’s Family. While non-English-speaking Russians may have missed some of the down-home humor as the two bantered about who baked the best pies to serve at the church bazaar, they did enjoy seeing President Bush in a very curly gray wig, which some thought was his real hair, and a floral print dress. After a long night of cabaret and gay bar-hopping, the two world leaders made one final stop and resumed their talks about nuclear weapons, removing their orthopedic shoes and flesh-toned panty hose but demanding that the deejay continue playing a techno dance-mix version of the Sister Sledge hit “We Are Family.” When the topic of offensive arms came up, the two presidents began swatting at the flab on their lower biceps, each telling the other he didn’t look so bad. Both are expected to end the talks in a few weeks, at which time they plan to focus their energy on getting tickets to the upcoming Madonna concert in Atlanta É See? I could have just slipped that in and no one would be the wiser, except for, perhaps, a woman I used to know whose name is Babe Weiser.

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