Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Other People's Stuff
Dear Fellow Mortal, Stumbling Through,
Last week, when the Matron left her 20 minute meeting at College XX (where she will soon have an actual bona fide office!! her first!!), and looked for her van, she was stymied. You see, she depends upon those two big bold Peace signs, a neon flash of goodwill on each door, to guide her. Only when squinting into theMazda and checking the plates (she is SO trusting that way!) did she realize -- you stole her Peace signs!
Fellow Mortal, the Matron's first impulse was to rip you from limb to limb. Those were HER Peace signs! And for Heaven's sake: steal a peace sign? So she rode that rage all the way home where she found the parent of one of Stryker's friends. He's a minister. Oh boy, she didn't waste a minute, complaining about you.
The minister? He laughed -- a very happy non-ironic laugh which initially annoyed the Matron - and said: "Whoever stole those needs them much much more than you do. May he benefit."
Well, hot damn, that sort of sunk in and saved your sorry ass, Fellow Mortal.
The Matron wonders now, where do you keep her peace signs? How do you feel when you see them? Maybe you still snicker over how incredibly clever you are ("poor sucker who lost her peace signs! I'll show him peace") or maybe, you feel guilty. Maybe you gave them to your girl/boyfriend or brother or sister. Do they know you're a thief? How do you define peace?
She has new magnetic Peace signs on her van and they are just as big and bright and beautiful. Sometimes when they catch her eye, she thinks about her old ones and wonders: how are you doing? She hopes --indeed, even visualizes -- her peace signs serving you, moving you forward, into a better place.
Dear (different) Fellow Mortal, Stumbling Through,
The Matron doesn't know you very well even though you lived on her block! Indeed, just a few doors down. When your old dog died last year, she noticed, though, and she noticed (with approval!) when the new dog arrived.
She wondered if something was amiss when you talked about buying the new dog on an installment plan, tiny payment by tiny payment.
Some time passed and the "For Sale" sign appeared in your yard. Fellow Mortal, she felt badly for you as the desperate "No down payment!" and "Cash Back at Closings!" signs followed. When all your stuff started appearing on the boulevard under "FREE. MOVING" she imagined just how worried you were, how scared.
Then one day, you were gone. You, your wife and her mother. Gone. She doesn't even know your real name, just the general condition she shares with you (and everybody else).
That day, John came home with booty from your boulevard, three perfect sundae cups for our children. "Look! Aren't these great! One for each kid!"
Fellow Mortal? She hopes things are better now. She will probably never know where you went or what your name is since nobody else seems to have that story. But she has no plans to use your sundae glasses. They're yours. She'll just hold onto them for you, as a memento to a life you had, once.
We will all say good-bye to our stuff, eventually. The glasses help remind her. Thank you!