Monday, January 12, 2009

Choices

I was reading a story this morning on the toilet from Chicken Soup for the Soul at Work. It's not really my kind of book but it seemed weird to take the cereal box in to read instead so there you have it. I read a story about Jerry who was always in a great mood. He would say things like "If I were doing any better, I'd be twins!" I have no idea what the hell that means but I'm going to guess that Jerry was doing good enough for two. Whatever Jerry. So Jerry makes a pretty rookie mistake at work one night and leaves the back door open. Some dudes come in to rob him at gunpoint and Jerry, abandons cheer for abject terror and shakes so much opening the safe, the robbers get pissed and shoot him. Jerry is fortunately rushed to the hospital pretty quickly after but is in pretty bad condition. The faces of the doctors and nurses aren't exactly conveying 'everything is going to be okay,' so Jerry, quick thinker that he is, decides to break up the funeral with a joke. When they ask him if he has any allergies, he says yes. They all stop and look at him waiting for him to provide an answer to the obvious follow-up question, 'what', and he tells them...wait for it.... He tells them he's allergic to bullets. Ha! That Jerry, delaying critical medical care to pull a zinger! He then lets the staff know that he intends to live so they should operate on him as if he's alive, not dead. Jerry believes that life is about choices and more importantly on how you chose to interpret and respond to the things that happen around and to you. Jerry credits that attitude with his survival.

Jerry is absolutely right about choices, but the twins business, that's just f-ing annoying. Jerry is choosing to annoy the hell out of everyone around him because everyone knows he's choosing at least some of the time to make yummy noises when eating a shit sandwich instead of acknowledging that it really sucks. Then the bit about being shot, that's pretty bad but again, I think Jerry is attributing just a little too much of his non-dying to his ability to crack jokes and inform the medical staff about his living/dying intentions. Peeling the onion further, maybe Jerry's determination to always be happy, always find a broad silver lining in a crap cloud and then announce it to everyone, maybe that is evidence of Jerry's inability to process other emotions. I'm just sayin...there is a reason people like Jerry annoy the hell out of most of us. It makes us feel like expressing anything other than goodwill and cheer is wrong. That the natural range of human emotion is wrong to express to the world around us. Like emotional PDA. Get a room, no one wants to see that. Don't mean to pile on Jerry but he won't see it that way anyway.

Speaking of piling on, this evening was just spectacular. I got two checks in the mail, and I finally got to meet this guy I keep running into. He has a dog and I usually see him when I have my dog so that means one of us crosses the street and that's that. We tried to let them meet; it was a lot of 'no! sit! sit! no! I'm sorry!' But tonight I decided to pick-up my dry cleaning without the dog and ran into him. I even had a little makeup on and I wasn't dressed like I was homeless or recovering from the flu. I got to learn his and his dog's name and love on his dog, so maybe he won't think I'm as big a jerk as my dog can be. Then I checked my e-mail and my renter is interested in buying my house! Because I'm not Jerry, I'm wary of what the rest of the week can hold given this banner evening. But tonight, I choose to be joyous because circumstances demand it. It's been awesome.

1 comment:

Good-Grace said...

Way to roll with it girl! Bask in the goodness while it lasts... and enjoy it. :) Glad you got to meet "the guy" ... I'm so intrigued.

Oh yes ... I loved your last lines there about not looking like you were recovering from the flu. You always nail it... that's what I look like on most days. haha!

((hugs))