Thursday, August 7, 2008

Blowing Smoke Rings in the Dark


I always find wisdom in the strangest places. One of my closest friends, Hiram, is probably the wisest person I know. His wisdom is in the simplicity of how he sees the world. The other day I called him and asked him what he was doing and he said he was watching the tv, "but mostly, it's watching me." I called him today for some advice and he said he usually just sits back and waits for a situation to unfold before making a decision. If only I wasn't so reactionary. I asked him how I can become as wise as he is and he said, "awe, I just share my experience and hope someone gets something out of it." Truly wise. My friend Paul is the same way. He always seems to be able to translate the world to me in a way that I need to hear it at that exact moment. Today I was complaining that I had been thinking about things too much lately and that sometimes it felt like a curse. He said I was a deep thinker and that wasn't a bad thing. But then he said, "You know, there's some poor girl, pregnant and working at Hardee's all day. And she can't wait to go home to her husband who's smoking and drinking a beer and they'll have bologna sandwiches for dinner. And she loves him. She really loves him and she's happy because she doesn't know any better." And I commented that sometimes I wished I was that girl. "No you don't" he said. And he was right. Because as much as it hurts to be reminded of all that I've gone through and all that I've learned and will learn, it's the bitter and the sweet that makes life so wonderful. So, I was sitting around bored tonight and I decided to go and get a cup of coffee at the gas station. And there's this kid that's always working in there on third shift. When I walked in, he was making new coffee and I poured some of the old into my paper cup. I took it up to the counter while he was asking me how I was doing. I said fine and started to get out my money. He said, "No smokes tonight?" and I shook my head. "Man, the coffee's on me, it's been sitting there since I got in anyway." And I smiled. Bologna sandwiches, right. But it made me really happy, because, truly, there's a lot of wonder to be found in a hot, day old, free cup of coffee late at night. And it was the best damn cup of coffee I've had in a long time. I came home and turned off the lights, lit some candles, turned on the classic country station and lit a cigarette. And I slow danced around my place, blowing smoke rings in the dark, just dancing and remembering...and smiling...

1 comment:

Krissa said...

The pregnant girl at Hardee's isn't happy because she doesn't know any better. She's happy because she knows more than the rest of us.