It has been wonderful hearing from everyone this week, either by comment here on the blog, or by FB, or email. So we are off to a good start. I hope that many of you did things this week that would make your Mama’s heart “go thump.” I did, and am doing, a number of things….I’m taking care of a friend’s house, plants, and mail while she is out of town. Earlier, I made a fresh pie for a neighbor who had lost her mother and 17-year old dog within the same week. I gave free tickets to some neighbors who had never been to a UT Lady Vols basketball game. Just a few of my “heart thumpers” this week. So little things can make a difference – they don’t have to be BIG actions. Since last week’s blog was a little sad, I thought we might have a lighter story and challenge this week. AND this is a New Year’s story, so I have to get it in the blog this month. So, here we go…
I need to give you a little “background” for this particular story. Although I am a public speaker and communicator by trade, my close friends and family know that if anyone has a talent for saying the wrong thing, and putting not one, but two, feet in their mouth…..well….that would be me. Now, on to the story…
If you are from the South, you KNOW that black-eyed peas MUST be eaten on New Year’s Day in order to have “good luck” for the coming year. If you were to ask most Southerners “why” we eat black-eyed peas for good luck, not many would be able to give you a rational answer. We just know that if that black-eyed pea does not cross our lips on New Year’s, all is lost, and gloom and doom will surely follow us the entire year. My Mama used to always call me on New Year’s Day to wish me well, and she would always begin the conversation by saying, “Have you had your good luck yet?” And of course, I would always respond, “yes, I ate them at lunch.”
This particular year, I was out of town visiting with friends over the holiday. Most of us had not had very good “luck” the prior year, so it was pretty much a unanimous decision to include black-eyed peas in our New Year’s menu. As “luck” would have it, we did not have any peas at home, so a trip to the grocery store was required. My friends sent me into the store (by myself), knowing that I cannot go into a store without talking to everyone in the building. (They waited for me in the car.) As I finally located the aisle containing the black-eyed peas, I started walking down it. I saw a man walking up from the other end of the aisle, and for some reason, I came to the conclusion that he was also looking for black-eyed peas. I smiled at him from a distance away, and he returned the smile. As we got closer to each other, within “talking” distance, I gave him a great big ole’ smile and said….”Hey, are you looking for some good luck?” The minute the words were out of my mouth, I KNEW they were the WRONG words! The man smiled at me, started at my feet with his eyes, going slowly over my body to my head, and said, “I might be…” I raced out of the store before he could go any further! I hopped into the car and said the words my friends have heard on more than one occasion…”leave rubber!” They peeled out of the parking lot not saying a word. Several blocks later, they all turned to me and said “what did you do??” Of course, New Year’s rolled around the next day, and my phone rang. It was Mama. The first thing she said was, “have you had your good luck?” I said, “Mama, don’t even go there.” The phone line got really quiet, and then she said…”what did you do?”
So, JUST FOR THIS WEEK, I am going to realize that I cannot read peoples’ minds, and know what they are thinking, or even what actions they might be thinking of taking. I’m NOT going to jump to conclusions!! I’m going to let people communicate their thoughts and actions to me with no bias or anticipation on my part. In other words, I AM GOING TO LISTEN….just for this week. Won’t you join me?
Well Cuz, that’s one story of yours that I hadn’t heard. Liked it though. Message received! ; )
Oh, unfortunately, there are probably quite a few you’ve not heard. Keep reading….Ha!
I plan to read everyone of your stories. I printed them and plan on making a notebook of the articles.. I remember this story very well. By the way, I did have the black-eyed peas for good luck this year. I did buy my black-eyed peas at the supermarket. I did not have to burn rubber after leaving the store. You rock my world!
Well….as you know, if you stay around me very much, you will have to learn how to “leave rubber…”
Cat, I too can be bad about saying something very innocently that does not come out that way. This was very funny! Thanks for sharing it and making me laugh today!
I think it happens to all of us….some, more than others! Glad I gave you a laugh. There will be more…