It was about 6 p.m. on a Friday night and I was as exhausted as I have been in a long time.

It was about 6 p.m. on a Friday night and I was as exhausted as I have been in a long time.

I'm not really sure why, but I have been tired a lot lately.

Looking at the clock, I thought about all the things I needed to do. My mother was coming for a visit Saturday evening, and I needed to finish cleaning the house. Thistle is waging a war on my garden, and it looks like the weeds are winning.

I need to run around and pay bills, too, I thought. For a moment, I just needed to drop on the couch.

I was in a prone position for about 10 minutes when I decided I could not stand it any more. It did not matter how tired I was, I needed to move, I needed to do something, even if it was wrong.

I picked up the portable phone next to the couch and stared at the blurry letters.

Darn, I thought. I left my reading glasses in my office beside my computer.

I must have collected a dozen pairs of reading glasses in the last six years -- a sure sign I am getting old -- but they are never where they are needed.

My friend, Carl, who has loaned me his glasses more than once, threatened last week to get me one of those chains, which I recall being worn by my fifth-grade teacher.

I scanned through the numbers on my phone, trying to look for the appropriate one. I have never been able to mentally retain numbers of any sort, and my mother and brother find it remarkable that I am capable of recalling my own phone or Social Security number, so I rely on my phone or planner to help me when I place a call.

Straining to make out a couple of letters on the caller identification, I looked down my nose at the screen.

"Ah, there it is," I said, seeing a short name which ended in a double T.

I hit redial and waited for my friend and neighbor to pick up.

It was too late in the day and week to call my walking partner, Lynne, to ask if she wanted to head to Blacklick Metro Park. Lynne typically likes to spend her evenings with her husband and daughters, and if I had a husband and daughters, I would assume the same attitude.

My neighbor, Debbie, like me, is not married. Debbie's son is married, and like most settled males of the species, does not spend much time at his mother's house.

I knew she was home because we share a driveway and I could see her white Buick through the hedge.

What I did not know was if she had to work. Her work schedule is as strange as mine.

When I heard someone pick up the receiver and say hello, I launched first into questions rather than introductions. I know it is rude, but I have never been one for chit-chat or standing on formalities.

"Do you have to work tonight?" I asked.

"No," was the answer.

"Do you want to walk?" I asked.

"Who is this?" she asked.

After seven years as my neighbor and friend, I expected her to know both my voice and my rude behavior.

"Who is your walking partner?" I asked, laughing.

"Cathy, I think you are going to have to walk by yourself," said the voice, "I am still doing my filing."

All at once, I burst into laughter.

"Oh, my gosh, Denise!" I said, hardly able to catch my breath. "This is what happens when you reach upper middle age and you try redialing without your glasses."

Earlier in the day, the president of the Hilliard City School District Board of Education returned one of my calls, so her number was still on the phone.

Rather than seeing Triplett, I was seeing Bobbitt -- not that they look anything alike when you have spectacles on your face, but the only letters I recognized without my glasses were the two T's.

"Sorry, Denise," I said, not sure rather to roll off the couch and under a rock or have a good laugh at my own expense.

Not able to find a boulder big enough to crawl under, I was still laughing when I hung up.

What can I say? I have gotten old, fat, tired, deaf and blind.

Ain't middle age grand?

The embarrassment and ridiculousness of calling the wrong person with redial at least got me off of the couch and into my office. Putting glasses on my face, I scrolled down to "Triplett."

"Debbie, is that you?" I asked, chuckling as I heard the uncertainty in my voice. "Do you have to work tonight?"

Cathy Wogan is a staff writer for ThisWeek.