Sea, Me Sides of Life

ISLE OF PALMS, South Carolina -- During a long walk on the beach, I noticed a phenomenon I had never seen before: live starfish. What was curious is the creatures -- and I observed dozens on this sizzling hot day -- had apparently buried themselves in the wet sand to remain cool and camouflaged.

When I snapped the photograph, it was low tide and this star (nicknamed Joan Crawford for those tiny feet and encyclopedic knowledge of "Humoresque") was slowtailing it back to the ocean one foot away.

I looked up to share my discovery with my wife and saw this startling picture....

I thought the world was out-of-frame, being the retired movie projectionist I am, but, no, and lo, I'll be damned if my Donna wasn't returning to the sea, too.

I begged her to come back to me. I confessed I knew I was not as cute as primordial ooze, but I would do better and floss an holiday assortment of tooths, and -- shudder -- let her use the remote control to see doilies on Home Shopping Club.

She caved. Sheesh, do I have it or what?

We reunited and -- I dare only now to speak of the passion -- spooned, and I felt my way lovingly up her torso to the Cheez-Its in her bag.

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