Reflections In The Mirror (While Shaving) #33

I haven’t written anything for months… I would like to blame it on illness or a heavy workload but I think my brain just decided to dormicate for a while… (the result of dormant hanging out with a smooth-talking verb).

• The English language guardian’s worst nightmare … a man with a forum whose mind has been dormicating …with no compunction about unusual punctuation.

• After only two short paragraphs, the red and green squiggly lines underlining my misuse of words and punctuation have joined their little squiggles and shouted “we quit!”… good I hope they stay away.

• Gophers are so used to my tactics, they toss lawn parties, sip pinot noir and place bets on whether I get the bomb in the ground before burning myself … I thought of putting a 10 spot on the burn but that didn’t seem the right attitude.

• I worry about the things I worry about.

• Watching a small snake wriggle across the porch sets off fear I can’t control. I hate being the one who deals with the snake but the cat has already determined it isn’t his job and all the adults in the neighborhood are gone.

• In the not-quite-awake state, I began to relive every embarrassing, self-centered, mean act I’ve ever done … chronologically and in vivid color. What the hell is that about? For those of you trained in psychology, it’s a rhetorical question. For those not trained, what the hell is that about?

• It’s a well-known fact our self esteem increases as the wine bottle level decreases. Those inverse relationships have been a pain in my butt forever.

• Two guys standing side by side … the first with a great casting rod and new waders … the other in cut-offs and a line he hurls from a make-shift reel. One for Fun… one for Food. Fun catches fish and hands it to Food … good day… stop me if I’ve told you that before.

• You know I care when I touch your feet.

• Another class reunion … how long can this go on? Ah …wait a minute … I want them to go on, right?

•  With shotguns a poppin’, dogs a barkin’ and wind a howlin’, the little next door neighbor cat is serene in a lap. Cats are pretty darn smart.

• I was told that shaving my mustache off made me look ten years younger … the mirror smiled, “really Slick … not enough … grow it back.”

• The outside world is constantly being vanilla’d by earphones, ear buds, headsets etc. … why do I close out the wonderful noises that abound in around sound to listen to playlists that are becoming less wonderful with each repetition.

• This column is a couple of shades grayer than normal, but so am I. Remember I’m suffering from dormication … I have it from a good source, the cure includes running a marathon, being nice to 10 people with no expectations, and grinning so wide it threatens to break any nearby mustache … I will be cured by the next column… except for the marathon part.

Doug Mudford is a lawyer and partner at Barr & Mudford, with an emphasis on serious personal injury. He may be reached at Barr & Mudford, 1824 Court St., Redding, 530.243.8008. Send questions for “That Lawyer Guy” to

Doug Mudford’s photo illustration by Michael Burke of Redding.

Doug Mudford
is a lawyer and partner at Barr & Mudford, with an emphasis on serious personal injury. He may be reached at Barr & Mudford, 1824 Court St., Redding, (530) 243-8008, or
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20 Responses

  1. Avatar Pamela says:


  2. Avatar Terry says:

    Now I know what's going on in my brain – dormication! Thank you, Doug.

  3. "dormication"…I love it! Better than "staycation"!

  4. Welcome back, Doug. We've missed you!

  5. Avatar mike says:

    Do you mind if I borrow "dormication" on occasion?

  6. Avatar Doug Mudford says:


    I would be honored. I've usually borrowed my thoughts from someone else but I think "dormication" is sorta mine.

  7. "I worry about the things I worry about." Might be one of the greatest lines of all time!

    • Avatar Doug Mudford says:


      I really really hope it's mine because I like it too.

      • Avatar EasternShastaCounty says:

        My mother had this Ralph Waldo Emerson piece framed. I'd like to say it helps me when I'm awake at 2:30 AM worrying about the things I worry about, but, well, it doesn't actually. But for your enjoyment, here it is:

        "Finish every day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt have crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be cumbered with your old nonsense. This day is all that is good and fair. It is too dear, with its hopes and invitations, to waste a moment on yesterdays."

        • Avatar Doug Mudford says:

          2:30 am is one of my best worrying times… like you, I don't think Emerson will help but I'll hang it up anyway. It's a good way to start or end the session.

  8. Avatar Ginny says:

    Good to be able to read your column, again!

    Thanks for the smiles and laughs!

  9. Avatar Aleta Carpenter says:

    My untrained mind thinks … perhaps regret?

  10. Avatar Eleanor says:

    I'm happy to see you back, Doug, and would like to take credit for it.

    I was beginning to think the cat had got your mouse.

    • Avatar Doug Mudford says:


      Your kind comment could not have come at a better time. You were indeed a tipping factor. My mouse is still alive and well…


  11. Well you should let others worry about what you're worried about not worrying about. Then you can worry that they're not worrying enough about your unworried worry-worries.

    • Avatar Doug Mudford says:

      Ok Robb…I know when I'm overmatched. I worried someday I'd be outworried by a worrier more worthy…just know I'm not hanging up my psyche just yet…

  12. Avatar `AJacoby says:

    As I often said about my mother , . . sometimes even to her face … . she'd worry if she didn't have something to worry about. Worry is a fine art, I'm sure. After all, so many people spend a lot of time energy on it. I just could never stay awake long enough . . . .

    And yes, I think dormication should most certainly be entered in that New York Times new word contest thingy. . .

  13. Avatar Steve Fischer says:

    I had a friend in college who once confided that he wasn't worried about his grades – and that worried him.

    I worry about people like that.