December 16, 2003
Quit Your Bitching, Already!
One would think that my recent failed-attempt to quit smoking (and my subsequent six pound weight gain in six-and-a-half days), my flat tire (car – not gut), my being way-wicked behind at work, my oven dying and my perpetual poorness would be fodder for yet another tale of woe and commiseration…..but I’m an a strangely optimistic sort of mood.
Of all things, the thing that boosted my spirits was Jury Duty! Tomorrow, I’ll step into the court house, juror number 54, and do my part to ensure that justice will be meted out in a fair and impartial manner. Or at least, that is my hope. I think I’ll make a very fine juror, indeed! Last time I had jury duty, I was almost empanelled on a capital case. The plaintiff was mildly retarded, the victim was blind, one defense attorney had a skullet, the other was a walking Target/Ikea/Anne Klein model and the prosecuting attorneys were scary white dudes. I smarted off to one of the scary white dudes, who asked a very dumb question.....and I was all tabula rasa, "I take my directions from the judge and not from you....I have no pre-formed ideas...." and was eighty-sixed from the juror box (where I actually sat, for, like...hours!)
So, back to the not bitching thing….while I was sitting in Firestone this evening waiting for that flat tire to be fixed, sitting next to a child that really needed to blow his nose, I ruminated on life and liberty, the pursuit of happiness and all that jazz. Actually I was thinking about something my mother said to me earlier in the day. My mom told me that my niece and nephew are practically giddy that I’ll be home for Christmas next week. In fact my nephew said it would be “unbearable” if I wasn’t there. Unbearable? A very grand word for an eight year old....but he's a clever child. That kinda made me feel all, oh-I-dunno, sentimental and human for a few minutes. It also felt really good to say, “No, mom….I’m not calling for money…I’m actually just calling to say hello…..Really…..Yes…Really…..No…I’m just calling to say hello…..”
I guess it all boils down to feeling wanted. Isn’t that, really, just the silliest thing? I’ve been very prone to being so dour and bleak and cynical lately, that I’d forgotten about my many blessings. That’s all new-agey, crunchy-munchy, Oprah-istic, but it’s very true. Now, I don’t expect to go out and start buying placards and positive-affirmation mantras……but not letting a bunch of irritations weigh me down feels like a very small accomplishment.
Anyway, that’s enough talk about feelings. At least for today.