Hello Kitty sez, "Sorry about your bumper!"


I was supposed to be spending today getting bits of yesterday pummeled out of my crickety back and neck, followed by a long, windy walk around one of my favorite parks in Los Angeles.

But last night, as I walked out to my car after what was headed for the title of World's Longest (but still Most Excellent!) Day, I spied a wholly unnatural thing: a denuded driver's side door. As in, no mirror with which to see whether objects are, period, much less whether they are closer than they appear.

I confess to a split second of mental mayhem and fury. In my defense, I was tired. Very tired. Probably too tired to be bucking for Survivor of World's Longest (but still Most Excellent) Day, but my Bonnerooski was doing a signing/reading/thingamajiggy for 600 of her closest friends which I very much wanted to attend, as I'm a supporter of (a) the excellence that is Bonnie Gillespie's output in virtually every arena she seeks to play in, and (b) free drinks, and (c) potential meetups with some friends I've not seen in too long. (Plus, you know, FREE DRINKS.)

Almost as quickly, it slipped away. Mirror was gone; not much to be done until tomorrow. And bubbled up, but...but...BUT...

And then dribbled away again. Miraculously, I could not get too worked up about it. Not like Colleen of yore might have, anyway, with the fireworks and the fury and the cartoon steam coming out of my ears. Yesterday it was more like, "Mirror gone. Boo hoo," and done. I have money in the bank to buy a new mirror (in the morning) and free time in which to do it, yay! for lucky, lucky me.

Plus, even if it wasn't safe for old-lady-eyeballs to jump on the freeway at night, they could certainly lead me to The BF's, which drive I could likely do at this point had I no eyeballs at all.

So I popped open the door, heaved my stuff onto the passenger seat, and spied it stuck on the windshield.

A sweet, petal-pink buckslip of Sanrio-flavored goodness, with an explanation ("I TOOK YOUR MIRROR OFF TRYING TO SQUEEZE BY A TRASH TRUCK"), an apology ("STUPID MISTAKE I WILL PAY YOUR DAMAGES") and a name and number. Both of which worked. Made the appointment this morning, part ordered, friendly neighbor paying my mechanics* and sending me a check for time and gas money. Hel-lo, Kitty!

Sure, shitty stuff happens all the time, all over, every ding-dong day of the week. But great stuff happens, too, and it's worth noting when it happens. To me, the great stuff was not only that earnest little slip of girly stationery some grown man used to own up to a little (but at $298.97, plus tax, not incidental) goof; it was that somehow, with the aid of external events, much patient love and help from many dear ones (amateurs and professionals alike), and the steady application of new and better patterning, a 25-year-old angry fireball of dismal fury and perpetual sorrow could get to a 47-year-old place of joy and relative peace. That, my friends, is the miraculous alchemy of choice and time in action. This stuff works; I'm living proof, and fully intend to see how much farther (further? dammit!) it can take me.

In the meantime, may you enjoy this weird and sometimes wonderful world we live in, every second of every day...


P.S. If one of you smartypants types has a foolproof way for me to remember "further" vs. "farther" without having to look it up on the Google each time, you win a prize. Seriously. I have a prize here that I will send you. But FOOLPROOF. Something along the order of "My Very Elegant Mother Just Sat Upon Nine Acronyms that Used to Work Until Pluto's Planet Status Was Revoked." You know.

*Reed and Mike, of RM Automotive, who have taken excellent care of me and my two past Corollas for nigh on eight years. Highly, highly recommended for you Angelenos with a Japanese-built auto. (They work exclusively on Hondas, Acuras, Toyotas and Lexii.)

Image by mtl2tky via Flickr, used under a Creative Commons license.