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On Benji and Karma

February 4, 2010

My car broke down on the way home from the ski hill Tuesday night.  Fortunately, I was able to safely drift  into a well-lit gas station parking lot.  (This was extremely fortunate, since I was on a HIGHWAY, you know, with BIG TRUCKS, which SCARE THE CRAP OUT OF ME when the car stopped working.)

Oh boy, was I annoyed.  And cranky.  And so was Jason, even though I told him that he couldn’t be cranky because it was my turn to be cranky.

And I remained cranky most of the day yesterday.  So I figured I should hold my silence instead of blogging something crazy and ranty.  Because it’s been a rough couple of weeks here in the country – each week we’ve encountered a new and surprising challenge, most of which require a) patience, b) money, and c) (most importantly) a glass of wine.  Sick of looking on the bright side, I held myself a little pity party and invited the dogs.

Do you ever have that feeling like sometimes you just. want. to. pout?

So I pouted.

And then, I reminded myself that this is insane.  As much as it sucks to have to replace a car part that I JUST replaced in December (gah! timing belt! why is the labor to replace you so expensive!?), I’m pretty lucky that that’s the biggest issue in my life right now.  I mean, what kind of awesome life do I lead that the biggest thing I worry about is that our old car had a breakdown (only the second time in the 10 years that I’ve owned it that I’ve had any issues with it)?  Honestly.

Pity party over (but the wine can stay).

And somehow, that reminded me that I forgot to tell you about Benji, and how my mom and I rescued a 5 lb curly haired doggy from certain death on the busy roads of Wauwatosa, Wisconsin.

Those of you that knew my mom and I before we became “dog people” are going to love this.

When I was in Milwaukee 2 weeks ago, my mom and I saw a little 5 lb curly haired doggy dash out onto the super-busy street near my grandmother’s new apartment.  My mom STOMPS on the breaks, and we both look at each other, deciding that we have no choice – we have. to. save. it.  So I hop out of the car, IN THE MIDDLE OF THE BUSY STREET and begin to chase this tiny doggy, who begins to run away from me.  Cars are stopped, people are staring, and this itty bitty doggy is running faster than the wind.  Yikes.

He runs into a neighborhood, where my mom and I car stalk him.  Two other vehicles join the chase.  At one point, it looks like he’ll dart back onto another busy street, and my mom, in a maneuver that can only be described as police-chase-esqe (only with less tire squealing) manages to block him from the street.  I hop out and chase him another couple of blocks on foot, which is ridiculous because I haven’t run that fast or that long since the seventh grade (or college, actually, which might as well be the seventh grade since I graduated from college 8 years ago.  And if you can figure out how that happened, a million bonus points for you, because I sometimes still think I’m in college – only without the bunk beds and shots of Mandarin Orange Vodka – and today I got mistaken for a college student, so apparently I’m still dressing like it).

Anyways, I ran.  And when the little dog outran me, I hopped in the car, panting like you wouldn’t believe.

Meanwhile, my mom was looking for dog treats, or really, food of any sort to lure this little doggy to us.  And, for the first time in my entire life, there was no food to be found in my mom’s car – no stale, stepped on MacDonald’s hamburger, no bag of half eaten potato chips, not even an M&M melted into the carpet.  (Sorry to out you on the blog, Mom).  It’s like I moved out and grew up and she decided to get clean?  What is this?

Anyways, to make a long story, well, less long, little doggy ran into a fenced in back yard, where he was trapped.  A lady that was in another one of the cars in pursuit of little doggy informed us that his name was Benji and that he belonged to one of the elderly women that live in the same apartments that my grandma lives in.  She was happy to take him and return him to his owner, and we informed my grandma that she HAS to make friends with Benji’s owner so that we can see him again.

And that is the story of how I risked life, limb, and lungs to save an elderly woman’s dog from being squashed by oncoming traffic.

And that is why I declared to my mom, “We’ve got some good karma coming to us.”

Which is when she rolled her eyes at me and said, “You don’t really think that’s how it works, do you?”

And the answer is not really.  But a little bit.

I like to think that when we do good things to help other people, when we’re happy and positive, we can inspire those around us to do good things, too.  To help others without being asked.  To spread goodness and cheerfulness.  And maybe, if I do my part to spread a little love, then it will spread back to me, too.  Because I get warm happy fuzzies from helping other people.  And maybe I can get other people to help me in return?  Like, for example, the gas station worker who helped me push my broken down car out of the way.  Or the mechanic, who happened to stop into the gas station just as I was checking the oil to help me diagnose the problem, even though it was clear that we’d be taking our car elsewhere to be fixed.

So I don’t really know where I’m going with this, but maybe I could summarize in bullet points since, based on the powerpoints I’ve been prepping for my upcoming class, that is now my specialty:

  • My car broke.
  • I drank wine.
  • I’m not in college anymore.
  • My mom has a clean-ish car.
  • We saved a little doggy.
  • Don’t worry, be happy.
10 Comments leave one →
  1. Mom permalink
    February 4, 2010 3:46 pm

    I don’t know what you are talking about; my car is always clean.

  2. Mom permalink
    February 4, 2010 3:47 pm

    btw, it occured to me that your “Lessons Learned” category must be pretty big by now!

  3. Mom permalink
    February 4, 2010 3:49 pm

    I still haven’t located the elusive Benji at Luther Manor, maybe he was a figment of our imagination sent to give you the opportunity to earn some “good karma”? ;0

  4. GGG permalink
    February 4, 2010 5:44 pm

    Yes, it sure does feel good to do something for someone. Let me tell you about my good deed this week. I went to the Boston store to pick up a few things and each time I bought something I got a 10 dollar ticket to be used the next day. Well, I had bought everything I was about to buy for the next few months so on the way out I saw a little lady coming in that was freezing and shaking and I gave them to her.The look on her face was priceless and she said she would go home and come back the next day. I saved her 30 bucks! The look on her face was well worth it!

  5. japortma permalink
    February 4, 2010 10:41 pm

    hmmm I also had myself a pity party today…just listen to Bob Marleys “Three Little Birds” and all will be good. I listened to it a good 12 times today! haha!

  6. Brian permalink
    February 5, 2010 9:28 am

    Did I ever tell you about the time Jackie and I chased a Llama through our neighborhood? The best line of the day came from the owner of the Llama….”Look out, its going to SPIT”

    • February 5, 2010 9:41 am

      A llama!?! That’s so awesome! I’d love to have video footage of that…

  7. Jackie permalink
    February 5, 2010 11:21 am

    I can so picture you chasing this little fur ball and your mom squealing around in the CRV….. I had a good laugh, thanks!! 🙂

  8. February 5, 2010 11:33 am

    good- glad to hear you have pity party’s too –
    except i usually eat chocolate not drink the wine –
    maybe i should try it your way?

    Have a great weekend where only
    good things happen to you!

  9. February 5, 2010 11:59 am

    True heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic. It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost, but the urge to serve others at whatever cost.
    Arthur Ashe

    Call it Karma or what ever…. none the less to do the “right thing” is ALWAYS the right thing to do. I am very proud of who you have become!

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