Sunday, November 18, 2007

"Wisdom comes to those who pay attention"

Coined by Kathryn Evans, Sunday, November 18, 2007

I was thinking about several people who have recently asked me "how did you know that" and while I am always tempted to say "cause I'm old," I just decided that's not it - at least not entirely.

I have always felt that I learn more than some because I pay attention. Particularly as a child, my relative shyness allowed me the opportunity to observe and learn from the mistakes other people were making around me.

I wish I could do more of this. I feel like as we age, our egos take over. It becomes harder to listen. We want to talk. Harder to learn. We want to teach.

But maybe I can change the tides just by being more mindful. Here I am wanting to learn, ready to learn - now I just need to pay attention.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Taxicab Expressions

I was very late this morning. I overslept by over an hour, so I had to do everything quickly... even with my breakneck speed, I missed my "walking to work buddies," I missed the bus, and since I've been late alot and leaving early even more - I needed to get to work on time.

Flush with cash from my recent paycheck, I decided on a tiny luxury: a taxi halfway to work. My good fortune continues - as usual - and I not only got a ride to work, but I got a lesson in philosophy from Claude, cab driver and sage.

Here are his bon mots for the day:

"There are three kinds of crazy people:

Those that are just naturally crazy.

Those that were poor and become rich.

And those that were rich and become poor.

So consider yourself lucky. Being positive will be your best defense against crazy

Thanks Claude. You rock.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

The End of an Era.

Anyone that ever has lived with me will recognize this towel. It's been a constant presence in my bathrooms since 1991. I am sad to report today was it's last official day of service. It now resides in the trash can.

It was given to me by my first real bosses: Paulette and Teddi Friedman. They owned an upscale retail store in St. Louis and they were the first people ever to hire me. There were a hilarious couple. Paulette was known far and wide for changing her clothes mid-day in the middle of the store... oh, and its noteworthy that Paulette wore neither a bra nor underwear, only pantyhose. It is an unfortunate image that will live with me longer than this towel.

They gave it to me as a departure present. I moved from St. Louis to Alexandria, VA in my Senior year of high school, and they knew how nervous I was. This present was intended to make me excited for college - just one short year away.

Away with me to college it went... I even bought plastic crates in the same color teal as the writing. I was so very coordinated! It's been with me ever since. Countless apartments in several states. It's been there when I lived at home, when I lived alone, and when I lived with roommates.

It's the most enormous towel you've ever seen - a bath sheet really and has kept me modest despite my weight struggles, regardless of the potential viewers for over a decade and a half. It stayed white for a very long time... only recently have I realized it's graying.

Maybe that's why this towel has me nostalgic... it's graying is reminiscent of my own. This object has intimately lived with me through my late teens, through college, through my twenties, to where I am today.

Perhaps I'll get another monogrammed one that will have a similar lifespan. I know that I hold these sentimental objects very close to my heart and I am loathe to replace them. Visit me someday and start asking me questions... nearly every object that surrounds me has a story. Much like the people I love, if I hold you close to my heart, you are truly remarkable - and I will sing your praises to anyone and everyone that will listen.

I'll stop here... I'm sure I lost most people a long while ago. "What's up with the ode to the bath towel?"... is what you all must be saying.

Alright, alright, I'm done.