Gritty Chocolate Chip Cookies

***

Without fail, every autumn, the crisp air and bright foliage cause me to recall the time in 1979 I went with my girlfriend Carol and two of her friends—a married couple, Greg and Dorinda—on a day trip to Philadelphia.  We lived roughly 150 miles from the city, on Long Island, and Carol’s friend, Greg, drove.

 ***

I well remember that period in my life—my late teens; I had a particular fondness back then for strolling about big cities—especially on clear, bright autumn days such as this one.  And in Philadelphia, I recall how the crisp October breezes formed colorful whirlwinds—leaf devils—that skated through intersections and up and down the sidewalks—how the immense cumulus clouds, caught in 30-mile-per-hour winds, pushed massive shadows in their wake, down the streets and up the sides of buildings.

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It was interesting to see how the Old World existed alongside the New.  Buildings that might have been built in 1770 stood beside structures from perhaps 1970.  We ambled along a cobblestone road where a plaque in the ground informed us we were also traversing the roof of someone’s house from the late 1700s.

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***

Carol and I had been arguing (as usual), and (as usual), there were some hard feelings between us that day.  And although I was silent and morose as we walked from one historic place to another—learning new things about Ben Franklin and George Washington, seeing the Liberty Bell and all the touristy stuff—Greg and Dorinda were used to ignoring the tension between us.  And Carol, as was typical for her, had a great time with them—while ignoring me.

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I was nineteen, and although I worked full-time, I never had much money in my pocket.  I’d started the day out with maybe $10—but I knew I wouldn’t need much.  Most of our activities were free, and if we did pay an admission fee to anything, it wasn’t more than a dollar or two.  But everything cost me double because I also paid for Carol.  By late morning, Greg was a little peeved that I no longer had enough money for certain spontaneous activities or admission fees.  Greg and Carol were close friends, and so this created a kind of solidarity between them; now they could both be angry with me, and I could be angry with Carol—and now I could be a little peeved at Greg for being peeved at me.  Dorinda was never angry with anyone.

***

We grabbed a table at a pretty decent restaurant for lunch, and I found something on the menu that I really wanted that cost $6.  And although I was now down to about $2, I knew that Carol had a twenty, recently earned from her new job—her first steady employment.  So naturally, I figured that even though I was almost broke, like any long-time couple—friends—who are “there for each other”, she’d be there to pick up the slack.

When I gave my order to the waitress, Carol looked at me and asked, “Do you have any money?”  The waitress paused, Dorinda looked up at the ceiling, and Greg smirked.

“You do,” I said.

“Yeah, that’s mine,” she responded.  Thoroughly deadpan.

“Wow!”  (I actually said, “Wow!”)

Despite all the money I’d spent on her that day—indeed, over the past two years—all the gifts I’d lavished upon her—Carol clutched that twenty bucks as if her life depended on it.  It was hers.

And this was incredible.

I calmly asked Greg for his keys, got up, and politely told them I’d be waiting in the car.  I was so angry, I didn’t want to be anywhere near her.  She actually let me go hungry that afternoon when it was within her power to do otherwise.

The three of them took their time while I waited outside; it gave me time to think of all the times I had treated Carol to lunch during the past two years.

***

Later, at a museum, while the three of them watched a short film about the city’s history, I sat alone in a common area outside the small indoor theater, fuming and brooding—and trying to comprehend my girlfriend.  Unbeknownst to me, the architecture was such that the audience exited from a place below the balcony where I was sitting, and when the film was over, I was unaware that everyone was leaving.  While Greg and Carol walked (hurriedly, I presume) toward the street exit, I heard Dorinda’s shout from somewhere below me, “Eric!  We’re leaving!”  Had it not been for her, I would still be sitting there.

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***

So … long story, short … Philadelphia is one of my worst memories—but it’s also one of my best.

And it’s because God designed us so that time would smooth the rough edges of our less-favorable times in life—causing even the terrible experiences to somehow seem “not so bad, after all”.  We tend to gloss over the bad parts—and extol the good ones—so that in our minds we end up with an amalgam similar to sand in chocolate chip cookies.

***

Still, I hope my old girlfriend has better learned how to treat people who love her.  And I hope she has realized by now that I didn’t deserve to be abandoned in a city far from home—with no transportation—hungry—and without even enough money to buy a sandwich for dinner.

***

And every autumn, I reminisce about the events of that day—over and over.  I gleefully indulge in my gritty chocolate chip cookies.

So I guess it wasn’t so bad, after all.

 

Those Pesky Red Lines

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Hey, Obama, this one’s for you.

Mideast: Tehran told U.S. diplomats to tell Israel to “await the consequences” for killing one of its generals. This is the radical state that our gangsta-in-chief thinks will abandon nuclear weapons development.  Tehran’s Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian, while speaking to the official Iranian news agency on Tuesday (January 27, 2015), said sarcastically, in a reference to  Obama’s called bluff on chemical weapons in Syria, “the Zionist regime has crossed our red lines.”

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Now make sure I look really mature and presidential in this one, okay?

C’mon … why all the fuss?  Just because we have a president with no real interest in the job?  What’s wrong with having a ceaseless appetite for celebrity adulation, endless vacations, and a lifestyle that royalty could only dream of?

I never thought I would live in a country where the so-called “commander”-in-chief would actually degrade the Office of the President by hangin’ with his hoodies and getting in on some selfies.

I’m so glad that he’s planning to (someday) “degrade” those ruthless Muslim animals in the Islamist State.  They’re going to be so humiliated when this clown gets done “degrading” them.

It’s going to be a very long two years.

 

Climate change falling so far off the public radar, a major polling house didn’t even bother asking about it this year

Watts Up With That?

89094-boringGuest essay by Eric Worrall –

Climate Change is so low on the list of corporate priorities, that in Price Waterhouse Cooper’s latest survey of chief executive officers, climate concerns didn’t even make the list of questions.
According to The Guardian;

“In a critical year for action to prevent runaway climate change, one would hope the issue would rank high on chief executives’ list of business risks to worry about.
So it comes as a shock to discover that climate change appears so low on their list of concerns that professional services group Price Waterhouse Coopers did not even bother to include it in its global survey of business leaders.

PwC’s 18th annual global CEO survey, released Tuesday to coincide with the opening of the World Economic Forum in Davos, failed to even ask 1,322 business leaders about their global warming concerns after only 10% registered concern the previous year.

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Islam in the Workplace

For an unapologetic, articulate commentary on the “bloody nuisance” that Islam is, I strongly suggest that you go to this URL and watch Richard’s video essay: http://boodel636.blogspot.com/2015/01/islam-in-workplace.html?showComment=1421941893358#c4629707759240809259

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Another “arse in the air” showoff. “Look at me! Look at me! I’m SO devout. Aren’t you impressed?”

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What next? A Prayer Room in every place of employment? Here’s an idea: You work at a gas station? Go pray in the bathroom.