I am temporarily staying in the home of my sister and brother in law, and I don't suppose I really need to tell anyone that I am most unhappy about it.

There was a time in my life when the presence, at bedside, of this thing called a "salt lamp" would have elicited no more than a simple chuckle and maybe some gentle mockery. I can't say where she got the thing or how much money she wasted on it, but the fact that she left a copy of the marketing material there for me to read indicates that she really seems to have bought into the marketing claims.

A salt lamp is a largish clump of salt, hollowed out to allow for the insertion of a small light bulb. If you are doubting that the lamp is really made of salt, you can test-lick it. I did. The idea is that heating the lamp up will release "negative ions" into the atmosphere, thereby balancing out the positive ions released by dangerous things like computers and telephones, and 'naturally' cleaning the atmosphere in whatever room you place the thing. Some day, perhaps I will take the time to copy out the entire text, maybe scan the thing.

One of the "benefits" of this negative ion thing is that it is supposed to help you relax. It also claims to help you think more clearly.

The other comment I want to make on my sister's house is this: I went upstairs (I'm sleeping in the 'man cave [her words] she made for me in the basement) for a bowl of cereal. She asked me to move into a different chair, because she didn't want me to sleep in David's chair. The chair I was to used was squeezed between the table and the food-prep island in the middle of the floor. I said, "Oh. I thought David went out for breakfast." He did, but she didn't want me to use his chair.


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