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IT’S ABOUT TIME TO CLOSE THE DOOR ON `CLOSURE’ STUFF

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It seems every decade has its buzz words. We went from "meaningful conversation" to "entering into a relationship" to "bonding" and "quality time." I don't have a clue what any of them really mean, but if you say them with enough authority, people think you do.

The latest word to pop up in every conversation is "closure" - the bringing to an end of something, a conclusion. You can't get out of a "relationship" until you've had "closure."These words don't stay in vogue long. Next week it will be something else, so you have to get mileage out of them while you can. That's why I've been closuring myself to death.

I told my husband I wanted a closure on his closet. He'll never be able to turn the light on in there until he has said goodbye to bell-bottom jeans and fishing waders with a hole in the toe. There has to be an end to saving all those skinny ties and running shorts with safety pins in the elastic waistband. He has to ask himself, "When was the last time I snorkled with one fin?" Do it!

I sent a message of closure to each of our kids and told them they had to bring to an end their love affair with old report cards and attendance ribbons. If they're not ready for closure in my closets where they store this stuff, then they should take the stuff to their apartments to think about it. I told them it was time to stop living in the past and clinging to old achievements. Get a life!

Ed, a mechanic at the garage I go to, was next on my closure list. For the last few years, Ed has been trying to find out why my car squeaks when I put on the brakes while it is in reverse. It never happens when Ed puts the car in reverse - only when I'm at the wheel alone. So far, Ed has vacationed in Palm Springs and bought a Stairmaster for his wife trying to find my squeak. If it is not found within the next three months, I suggested to Ed, he should accept the fact that he cannot find the problem and let me go. I have a leak in my water softener and a grinding sound in my disposal that need my attention.

My husband regards all of this closure business as if it is some kind of a joke. He threw open the refrigerator door the other night and said, "If you're really serious about getting on with your life, you should say your final goodbyes to this bottle of Tabasco sauce that's been in the door for eight years or this leftover that lunges at me every time the light goes on."

I need time to heal first.