Sunday, May 14, 2017

Sunday Stealing

 Sunday Stealing: The Getting to Know You Questions

1. What is your occupation right now? How long have you been there? I am an advertising writer. I've done it a very long time. My first ad was for Granny's Rheumatiz Remedy back in December 1861.
2. Favorite rock band. Ever.

Look how cute!
3. What are you listening to right now? George Stephanapolous is about to interview Ken Starr. Considering that George worked in the Clinton White House, this could be very weird.

4. Last person you spoke to on the phone. What was it about? My friends in Key West. They just took out their marriage license! YEA!

5. How old are you today? Or make up a question. This one bites. Do you believe Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone?

6. What is your favorite sport to watch on TV? Go, Cubs, go!

7. What is your favorite drink? Coke

8. Have you ever dyed your hair? I did it myself for decades. Right now I have highlights, and they're professionally done.

9. Favorite food? Last night I had shrimp and it was very good. So I'll say grilled shrimp with lemon butter.

10. What is the last movie you watched? Union Pacific (1939). It was fun -- a little too long -- but it was entertaining. Robert Preston and Joel McCrea reminded me of Newman and Redford.


11. Favorite day of the year? My birthday.

12. How do you vent anger? I drink and swear.
13. What was your favorite toy as a child? My Lassie dog. We were inseparable.

14. Living arrangements? (Of course your pets count. Geez!) Me, Reynaldo and Connie share this 2BR condo.

15. What was the last thing that you cried about? I thought Reynaldo was sick. He wasn't.

16. Who is the friend you have had the longest? I've known my oldest friend for 55 years.

17. What did you do last night? I saw Union Pacific and then went out for dinner with members of my movie group.

18. What are you most afraid of? Airline travel.

19. In how many areas of your country have you lived? What's your favorite? Just this one. Obviously it suits me.

20. What is your favorite flower? (Ugh. Quite the note to go out on. But hell, we steal the questions. I guess you get what you pay for.) I like carnations. They're pretty and they last.


Why I'm mad at myself

So far this year, I've spent $300 on Cubs tickets.  $100 for a seat for the game I'm going to with John in June. $200 for two seats for the game I'm taking my nephew to in July.

And that's for the tickets alone. I'll spend more on hotdogs, beer, Cracker Jack, etc.

I am stunned by how expensive it is to go to The Friendly Confines of Wrigley Field. I get it, of course. My team is crazy popular* and it plays in one of the smaller parks. Intellectually understanding it doesn't mean I accept it emotionally, especially as I'm trying to economize.

And this is part of why I'm mad at myself over Friday. I stopped at the ATM for weekend cash. A woman approached me -- invading my space and making me uncomfortable -- and started to tell me about how little her job at Walgreens pays her.

"Ma'am," I said, cutting her off, "I've had a long week and I've got a train to catch. Here." I gave her the dollar I had in my pocket. I'd intended to add it to my transit card, but I figured it would help her more ... and make her get away from me.

She just stared at George Washington but didn't thank me. "If you don't want it, give it back," I snapped.

"I want it," she said, "but it's not enough."

"Then give it back," I repeated.

"Oh, I want it."

"Look, I didn't have to stop for you," I said, walking past her.

"Thank you, ma'am," she called after me.

"Finally!" I said, over my shoulder.

Look, I didn't have to stop for you. Oh, listen to me. I'm such a fucking saint because I broke my stride and acknowledged a fellow human being.

Did I have to cut her off and put the dollar in her hand? Maybe she wanted to be heard.

And haven't I just spent $300 on Cubs tickets? If I can afford that, why shouldn't I help the less fortunate?

I worry about my finances and my future. I hope if I'm ever in her position -- and I may well be -- I hope I meet someone who has a kinder heart than I did Friday.

I know that it's done. I know that I can't undo it. I know that many people wouldn't give her anything at all. And I know her aggressive approach and attitude added to the situation. All of this is true, and I can't change any of it.

But I can change my heart.

Someone once asked my what I "got" from being a believer, from being a Christian. Yes, I believe in Eternal Life and His unconditional love. But there's also this: I want to make choices that would make Christ happy. I didn't do that Friday. That's why the incident has been a constant discomfort, like a pebble in my shoe, ever since.

*Though my heroes aren't doing so well in the standings just now.