Tuesday, August 5, 2014

If you don't have anything nice to say, try listening

There are some things it's good to hear, sometimes, such as:

Are you really forty??? as uttered by your 29-year-old dental hygienist and new mom who "just happened to glance" at your chart while cleaning your teeth

We still can, as asserted by your best all-weather friend, in response to your lame sad excuses and attempt to bail on hanging out one fine summer evening, which we did anyway and which was good regardless and for which I am grateful

What's above our house? followed up by What's below our house? as pondered by your three-year-old niece, to her mother, during one of her routine bedtime philosophizing sessions

If [me, myself and I] can do it, then I can, as put forth by a dear old college friend who was divorced in the last year and recently decided to try meeting someone online and has now been on several dates since we last saw each other in June, after perhaps a decade (in a sweet surprise reunion arranged by my brother-in-law, for my sister, at my niece's birthday party)

Ah, it smells like Mother Nature's Pantry in here, as proclaimed by my sweet and thoughtful sister upon entering my kitchen, with memory of the thickly scented stairway up to the old apartment over the co-op in our college town, where I and others I am fond of once lived.  We sat out on the patio and plucked basil leaves over beers, and then enjoyed a fine dinner of rice pasta with chicken and red and yellow pear tomatoes with parmesan, fresh mozzarella with tomatoes and basil drizzled with olive oil and balsamic, topped off with incredibly delectably possibly perfect pesto on fresh bread or (argh...ok! fine) in my case, just mozzarella and fingers. 

Someone still will, as stated in all seriousness by my mechanic, looking me straight in the eye and without missing a beat, in response to my saying that I'd rather hoped someone would be willing to take on my Volvo as a Labor of Love, before I learned that I have a burnt valve on cylinder two.  Both he and his son had assured and subsequently explained in detail to me that, regardless of my oil issues, this was neither my fault nor my doing.  He went on to say that there are lots of men who work on cars these days--and lots of women, too--and actually suggested without any hint of nonsense that I could fix it myself, just get the parts from that one well-known retailer in WI, go online and learn how it's done and then take it very, very slow, and he even went so far as to tell me on my way out the door to give him a call if I decided to do so and needed any advice. This man is not quite old enough to be my father but I appreciated his slightly paternal and mostly unwarranted yet clearly well-informed and honestly inspiring sense of confidence that I could tackle that repair and succeed. As it stands, after telling me the bad news and letting me know that it would cost a grand to fix the cylinder, they just disabled the fuel injector for a mere $100, a workaround that most shop-owners would not divulge to their clients, much less offer outright as the most viable option. These guys are honest, serious, kind, and not full of shit, and do I appreciate that. And the truth is, though I am ready at this point to retire her if I must--and I must, and I do have a replacement in my sights or at very least my imagination--I would fix every broken part of my little red brick-wagon, myself, if only I had the tools, even if it took years.  For now, I guess we'll just keep on truckin'...even if it is for just a little while, and we don't get anywhere fast.

Good night, happy dreams, which was the beginning of what my mom used to say to us as kids every night, with the end always being I love you, see you in the morning

Peace and gratitude.

P.S. Just for the record, I do realize that I have changed person/voice freely in these paragraphs but this blog is not a grammar lesson, it's just a half-assed online journal so we think it's OK to write as we want.

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