Former columnist for the Los Angeles Post Examiner, the Baltimore Post Examiner, and Gatehouse News Service

Thursday, April 21, 2011

You Gotta Laugh...

Okay, so it has not been the best week.  Last week I was a chaperone on a middle school field trip, where I may or may not have "misplaced" two kids.  Then this week, it was school vacation week, spent begging my sixth grader to pick up his book and read a little, removing and then replacing my winter clothes in my closet (curse you, New England weather patterns!). I spent the week covered in sweater fuzz.  In between lugging clothes around, I went to work and called home 50,000 times to see a) if my son had eaten, b) if he had read, or was he still playing street hockey, and c) could he please put his dad on the phone, and yes, he had to go all the way upstairs to his home office and get him - NOW.  It was a long and exhausting week - I was also up early thinking and shedding some tears over a few recent losses my family and a particular close friend have gone through, that I can only watch and be there to listen to; helpless to stop pain.

So, I dragged myself in today, grabbed a coffee from Dunkin Donuts, and put my key in the lock of my building's front door, then went up the stairs and turned to go into my office.  The long week was almost over, and soon maybe spring would come and this weird dark patch would begin to lift.  My usual positive disposition was winning again, and I was happy to see it return a little bit.

When I turned to go to my office, I saw that there was splintered wood all over the floor of the small upstairs lobby, and my office door was hanging at a funny angle.  I was standing with my beautiful hot toasted almond Dunkin Donuts coffee staring at an office that had recently been robbed.  All the offices on my floor had just been robbed.

Standing in a conference room with other building tenants, we waited for a detective to come and interview us.  It was just like "Law and Order", but without the suspense, or action, or glamour.  I mentioned to my co-tenants that I had to go to the bathroom, but the detectives would not let us move or leave the room, and I was REALLY needing to boogie to the closest bathroom stall..  My friend Dino, from the office next door, dealing with the fact that a 62-inch TV had been ripped right off his office wall, grinned and grabbed a nearby empty coffee pot with one hand, and a Rubbermaid trashcan with the other.  "Your choice, sweetheart," he said, his Italian accent heavy as usual, one eyebrow arched at me in sly delight despite our circumstances.

I don't know if it was Dino's grin, or the absurdity of the day (not to mention the scariness), or the comfort of friends newly-made, but I started laughing, and could not stop.  You just never know what life will throw at you, so you've just got to hang in there.  You've got no other choice, and the clouds will drift away, some day.

Happy Holy Thursday, everyone.

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