Saturday, January 05, 2008

Smoking and the Cross...

Life is strange -- and sometimes it's stranger than at others. Like this afternoon. Nancy and I drove into town to attend some friends' 60th anniversary celebration. Of course, not a card was to be found around the farm, so we had to stop and buy one. Rather, I had to stop and Nancy had to buy the card -- she doesn't trust me to always get something appropriate!

So while she went in to get the card, I sat in the car and read the mail that we'd just picked up. The usual -- credit card offers, mortgage offers, pleas for money. A beat up old Chevy pulled in next to me. The driver was smoking a bedraggled cigarette clasped in his teeth by a cigarette holder. Franklin Roosevelt-elegant he was not. After a few seconds, he yanked the smoking butt from the holder, rolled down his window, and flicked it toward our car. It rolled into a puddle and sizzled out. Then he climbed out of his car and made his way toward the drugstore.

I was peeved. I mean, I don't care if the guy smokes. That's his business. But if doesn't want to stink up his car with a smoldering butt, why's he think I'd want it in the parking lot next to mine? Littering. What a clueless bozo! Shaking my head, I watched him amble across the parking lot headed for the door. As he approached the front of the store, he paused at the back of a vacant van parked there. It's been a rainy, gloomy day here, and the back-end of the van was covered in road dirt. The man paused and drew a cross in the dirt. He admired his handiwork and headed into the store.

I was more than bemused. This doofus litters and then makes the sign of the cross on other peoples' dirty vehicles. What in Heaven's name? And then I thought -- indeed, what in Heaven's name ... does Brent do that's just as goofy and never sees himself? Too much, I'm afraid. I try not to litter and I don't make the sign of the cross or fish or anything else on other people's cars, but I'm sure my sins could find me out just easily in the eyes of people watching me.

So thanks for the lesson, Mr. Cigarette Smoking, Litterbugging, Cross-drawing Guy.


PS If you haven't been to that amazing website in a while, you might check it out -- especially the "Other Good Books" and the "Brent's Books and More Store" pages. Both have been updated and all the books, CDs, and DVDs in the store have been hand-picked by your's truly -- no automated stuff from Amazon!

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