Different strokes for different folks
I was driving down the interstate to South Carolina when I saw a woman holding a child and standing on the side of the road. Her left rear tire was flat, so I pulled over.
I asked the woman if I could assist. She told me she had a flat tire. I tapped on the trunk lid and told her, “Pop the boot, and I’ll change the tire for you.”
She replied, “That’s so kind of you,” and tried to hand me her child. I told her I don’t hold children. “If it doesn’t use a litter box, I don’t hold it,” I said.
“She, not it,” the woman said before she went into the car to pop the boot.
I found the spare tire and jack, lug wrench and jack handle in the trunk.
“Don’t you have any children?” she asked.
“God, I hope not!” I replied without thinking. “My ex-wife had children and grandchildren, and that was close enough for me.”
“You never had to baby-sit or change them?” she persisted.
“I watched the granddaughter while she slept in the crib for short periods,” I said. “When she started to smell bad, I put a box of baking soda in her crib. Wow, these lugs are tight.”
It was clear to me I wouldn’t win this conversation, so I changed the tire, stowed everything where I found it, wished the woman safe travels and attempted to make a break for my truck.
“What do I owe you?” she asked.
“Nothing,” I told her. “Buy a small teddy bear and give it to a police officer; he’ll know what to do with it.” I gave her my card and went on my way. Maybe next time I’ll pretend to be deaf.
Otter, Milton, VT
Thanks for the poignant slice of life. Let’s face it, people are different. Some people like to make small talk, and some people prefer the sound of silence. Some people ask questions that are none of their business, and some people have smarter answers than the questions tossed their way.
I say, “vive le difference!” Actually, that’s what the French say, but you catch my drift. I like to think I’m different. I love cats, dogs and babies (especially my one-year-old granddaughter), and I hug and squeeze them every chance I get. I ask questions that aren’t any of my business, and I give smarty-pants answers to questions, which, in the case of this column, is my business.
Think how boring the world would be if we all looked, talked and acted the same. For one thing, Murphy’s World would probably stop spinning and ol’ Murph would be out of a job. No, Otter, don’t turn a deaf ear on your fellow man and woman. Instead, keep listening to every word…and then write it all down and send it to Murphy.
Murphy and Lucky Dog