He breathed deep the scent of the dying leaves as he left the house and walked toward the curb. The faint howl from a distant dog echoed his sense of dismay upon discovering that the paper boy had yet again deposited his morning paper directly in the middle of a large mud puddle.
He credited himself for having remembered to adorn slippers before leaving the warm haven of his home but his sense of pride was quickly lost as he recalled with a jolt that he had opted for his wife's powder puff pink slip-ons instead of his own gray loafer-styled slippers. Hearing the disappointed voice of his long dead father chiding him for being slack, the man sighed and advanced upon the troublesome puddle.
Bending at the waist he proceeded to grab for the stranded paper lying just beyond his stretching reach. Wriggling his fingers and holding his breath as a means of extending his stout form into a more elongated and graceful one, the man's fingers skimmed the plastic sleeve in which the paper lay entombed. Trying ever so persuasively to lure the floating news into his eager hands with promises of coffee stains, toast crumbs and undivided attention, the man was startled into awareness at the sound of his neighbor singing out a sugary sweet "good morning".
It was at this moment that the cheep plastic sole of his wife's slipper chose to escape him. Hurtling itself into a nearby rosebush in a last ditch effort to avoid muddy splatter, the slipper landed unscathed as his body lurched and splashed with great aplomb into the depths of the menacing trench. As he lifted his muddied face, pinched and spitting from the puddle, he could not help but smile as the mutt from up the road howled again.