Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Long Live

The checkout line at the grocery store was long. The list of things-unsolvable banging around in my head was long. My face, a little on the long side anyway, was maybe a bit longer than usual.

The gentleman in front of me, as he finished gathering his bags, leaned in to the clerk and said with a nod towards me, "I'll reward her with a joke since she's been waiting so long." Or something like that. And he turned to me with a smile. "What animal has more lives than a cat?"

I could not even pretend to have a clue. "Frogs. They croak every night." He grinned. The college student behind me was clearly amused, and the cashier, too. We all smiled, exchanged looks and smiled some more. I cannot remember if I thanked him, but I hope I did. I can at least pass the moment along. Because long live kindness and generosity. Long live laughter and compassion, and what Youngest recently referred to as softness, as in soft-heartedness. Long live taking the high road. Long live truth and honesty. Long live seeing the good in the mess, or at least seeing what it could be.

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  1. Oh, I love this. Boy is it hard these days. I feel as if we're all plodding along under a cloud of awfulness. It's in the air, in the atmosphere, it's waiting every morning when I open my eyes. Awful, unmentionable things, things we wouldn't admit to thinking, let alone proclaiming, have been given legitimacy. But here is the lovely man with his funny little joke. And here also is your funny little comment: "My face, a little on the long side anyway. . ." Thank you for the softness. XO

    1. Thank you, Mailizhen! Yes, you've said it perfectly. I have been feeling overwhelmed by that cloud of awfulness. Nearly paralyzed. This is the only way I can think of to fight back right now.


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