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Guest Columnists

The Case of the Missing Buns

Ginnie had been shopping all afternoon and was abuzz with shopitus when she pulled into the garage. I helped her unload the car as she debriefed, shooing the chickens out of the garage with one foot. She had been to Walmart, Target and Kohl’s, and was full of stories about this-and-that bargain, this-and-that salesperson, and what is she going to do if they close down “my” Target? I listened dutifully, as she directed which sacks went into the house, which stayed in the car for Goodwill, and which were for the girls at work.

“What do you want for supper?” she asked, the island counter top and much of the kitchen floor covered with pregnant sacks. “Cheeseburgers or Sloppy Joes?”

“Joppy Sloes,” I replied, my mouth watering.

“Joppy Sloes it is,” she sang, sorting items for the refrigerator, cupboard, laundry room and pantry.

When the Joppy Sloe mix was ready, she reached for the buns from the breadbox. No buns. “Where are the buns?” she said out loud, while searching through discarded sacks. Still no buns. So Ginnie went out to the car to see if she had left the buns there. Nothing. She came back into the house and went through everything again, including the dishwasher and refrigerator. You never know. She even looked in the bathroom and bedroom.

About this time I joined in the hunt. If I wanted to eat, I should probably help out. The car is usually the culprit in situations like this, so I went out and gave Ginnie’s car a thorough going over. Nada.

At first Ginnie thought the buns were in a gray Walmart sack, so we searched all of those, including the plastic-sack-full-of-plastic-sacks. Then she remembered that she had gotten the buns at Target, so we searched all the white sacks.

When Ginnie saw the white Target sacks beside the washing machine (new towels that needed washed), she said, “Ah, ha!” The missing buns would obviously be there. They weren’t.

“I distinctly remember tossing the buns in the car,” she said. So we gave the car a another going over, including the sacks for Goodwill and for the girls at work. Nary a bun. The chickens were really curious now. “What are those humans doing?”

Ginnie surrendered, her shoulders slumped. “I must’ve left the buns in the cart. Someone’s going to enjoy our buns.”

“No big deal,” I told her. “We will live through this. We can have Joppy Sloes on bread. I had plenty of bread burgers growing up.” (I was actually disappointed, but wasn’t going to show it. Buns make much better burgers, but I was getting hungry.)

While we were fixing our bread burgers, Ginnie kept apologizing. “Sorry about the buns, I don’t know where they got to.”

“Hey,” I said, putting a positive spin on it. “This is still much better than anything I would’ve fixed.” (Which is true.) “Cheggars can’t be boozy. I have a feeling those buns are going to show up somewhere.”

Halfway through the Joppy Sloes on bread, Ginnie strangely jumped up and headed for the bedroom. She came back holding a torn open bun package, with a couple of missing buns and several more shredded. Buddy slunk around the kitchen with his tail tucked, looking real guilty. He had evidently found the buns on the floor, in a sack, and scurried under the bed with them. Ginnie, the good-hearted person she is, couldn’t even scold him. He’s too cute. Buddy had gotten away with one.

The chickens sure enjoyed shredded buns the next morning.

Contact Curt Swarm at

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