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Saturday, January 1, 2011

Ahh, Never Mind. I Still Love Humans.

I enjoy humans. I really do. Humans are some of my favorite things.

But sometimes, humans are annoying.

Take, for example, the woman in the mall parking lot who not only laid on her horn but gave me the finger as she drove by. Apparently my reverse lights were enough to convince her that she was in imminent danger. Had she been as observant as she thought she was, she would have seen that my car may have been in reverse but that my brakes were on.

Or how about the woman behind me at the grocery store? She matched me, aisle for aisle, speaking to herself. She chose the moment I was pulling eggs from the cooler, however, to go from talking to herself to talking to me, announcing in an aggrieved and disrespectful tone, “Excuse me! I said, EXCUSE ME!!!”

Never argue with anyone crazier than yourself. “So sorry,” I said, stepping aside.

Yes, there was a time there, Friday afternoon, where I felt my love for my fellow human beings wane.

Back at home, soup and salad for lunch, I sat out on the porch on the second floor and stared into the park across the street. Every winter, the Parks people set up two full-sized hockey rinks, complete with boards and nets. Neighborhood children pushing folding chairs, twenty-somethings playing broomball clutching beers, hysterical dogs chasing stray snow clumps are visible at various times during the week. And because the fire department is less than a mile from my place, it’s not unusual to see firetrucks pull up, handsome young men falling out of them, skate-shod, hockey sticks in gloved hand.

Today it’s the firefighters on the ice. I pick out my favorite and invent the many ways we meet…

And then I saw Mirelle. Mirelle lives next door, rents from us. She’s a tiny woman, a friendly and funny woman. She is sprinkling Ice Melt on the sidewalks on the park side.

I open the window.

“Mirelle!”

Like the drug dealer I interrupted last year, she quickly spins around, looking everywhere but up.

“Up here!”

She looks up, finding me in the window. “Hey, Pearl!”

“Hey,” I shout. “Are you seriously Ice Melt-ing the park?” I can’t help but laugh. I know that she buys the stuff that not only melts the ice but is safe for dog paws. It’s not cheap.

“Yeah,” she said sheepishly. “I just hate the thought of some of our more elderly neighbors having to walk on these sidewalks, what with the weird weather lately.”

“Did you see the little ice balls it was raining earlier?”

“I did!” she said.

“Well, Mirelle. I gotta tell ya. You’re my hero!”

She laughed. “Sometimes it’s up to us, you know what I mean?”

I smiled at her. “Sometimes it is. Happy New Year, Mirelle!”

“Same to you,” she said.



And the same to all of you.

Happy New Year, everyone. And remember: Sometimes it’s up to us.

34 comments:

Simple Dude said...

In the midst of all the.. well.. morons in the world, it's always nice to bump into a Mirelle who gets it, and actually tries to make her little corner of this place a little better.

Happy New Year!

SD
simpledudecomplexworld.blogspot.com

Sioux Roslawski said...

Pearl--You have to appreciate the Mirelles of the world, because they are outnumbered by the whackadoos and the meanies...

By the way, I made your cream cheese-artichoke-red pepper-parsley thing for party last night. It was delicious! Thanks for the recipe. (My hips especially thank you.)

Mamma has spoken said...

The world needs more Mirelles in it. And fit firefighters who love to play hockey for our entertainment.
Happy New Year Pearl!

Gigi said...

Mirelle is so right, sometimes it is up to us. Because if we left it to *those* people, then we'd all be screwed. Happy New Year, Pearl!

Ponita in Real Life said...

Yup, a lot of the time it is up to us. Mirelle knows that.

Wishing you and yours a very Happy New Year, Pearl!

Oilfield Trash said...

Happy New Years!!

And yes it is up to us sometimes. Which is why this year my brother made me drink at home instead of in public.

WrathofDawn said...

I have to say, Pearl, it was very nervey of you to put your car in reverse before the Lady was finished driving by you. Very nervey indeed. *ahem*

That level of insanity always puzzles me. And they're everywhere... There's a middle-aged woman who routinely rides a bicycle on the sidewalk of the street where my office building is located. One day I was waiting for a break in the traffic so I could pull out of the driveway and she rode down the sidewalk, crossed in front of me, (I was stopped far enough back that the entire width of the sidewalk was clear) and just as she cleared the driveway, turned around and shouted, "F*** off, you f***ing b**ch!" in my direction. Well, that was me told. Imagine! Wanting to leave my work parking lot at the very same time she was riding down the sidewalk! And the nerve of me just sitting there... WAITING PATIENTLY...

Yes, some days it's only the Mirelles of this world who keep the rest of us from putting our head in the oven.

Eva Gallant said...

May the Mirelles of the world save us all!

Willoughby said...

Happy New Year, Pearl!

You're so lucky to have Mirelle in your neighborhood! We have the anti-Mirelle in ours. He shovels his snow off of his propery and into the street for the rest of us to deal with.

powdergirl said...

Huh, all I get on my backyard ice rink is a buncha noisy, hungry kids. maybe I'll invite the fire department out for a skate?

Yup, just when you think the worlds gone completely uncivilized, you meet a Mirelle. Nice.

ellen abbott said...

I like the idea of humans. the reality? Not so much. although Mirelle may just sway me over to the good side.

Kay Dennison said...

Happy New Year, Pearl!!!!!

Flea said...

OMG. So it wasn't just me? We spent the better part of yesterday out and about and ALL the loonies were let out of the bin, let me tell you. And driving. Scary movie.

Happy New Year, Pearl!

Rene/ Not The Rockefellers said...

Thank God for Mirelle...and for everyone who keeps feet and harmony in balance.

Jhon Baker said...

nice story to start the year off with - thank you Pearl - Happy New Year.

Camille said...

Now there you go again Pearl, making me puddle up for a moment. Thanks for the reminder with a good story attached. Wishing you a Happy New Year!

alwaysinthebackrow said...

Yay, Mirelle (nice name, too), and Yay Pearl for thanking her. The good ones so often are being good with no recognition. Happy New Year.

The Vegetable Assassin said...

A great new year to you too miss Pearl! And Mirelle, good samaritan and guardian of the elderly (and dogs). May 2011 be full of sparkle and crazies on the bus. :)

who said...

My father used to advise me to never "sleep" with a woman crazier than you (you meaning me so in telling it I should say he told me never to have sex with a woman crazier than myselve)

I thought about this for a second and asked him "But father, what about the woman twelve blocks north, Dorothy? you see her to change the oil in her car every 5 days and I still see her at jiffy lube getting said oil changed"

he tried to play it off like he didn't understand what I was saying.

I said "you know, Dorothy Parker Edgar Allen in Real Life!"

"Oh!, well son the exception to the rule is when she doesn't know where you live, doesn't have your phones number, and is blind folded hand cuffed and gagged prior to my arrival, to change the oil in her vehicle"

I am never listening to that idiot again.

Bossy Betty said...

And we still love you too!

Hope your New Year is a wonderful one!

a Broad said...

"And because the fire department is less than a mile from my place, it’s not unusual to see firetrucks pull up, handsome young men falling out of them in skates and hockey sticks.
Today it’s the firefighters on the ice. I pick out my favorite and invent the many ways we meet…"

OK ... this is why living in your neighborhood trumps living in mine.

Douglas said...

At this, the most appropriate time, I would like to wish you and yours a Very Happy New Year. It's gotta be better than the last one, doncha think?

becca said...

good idea about not agrueing with some one crazier then you the could win the agrument then where would you be and have a happy new year

Tracy said...

Pearl,
Mirelle is right; it is up to us...we often ask, 'why doesn't someone do something?' but realizing that WE are that someone!
love the post...

Smart Mouth Broad said...

Happy New Year, Pearl!

David L Macaulay said...

Happy New year, Pearl - you have some interesting characters up there, I blame the weather...

gayle said...

Happy New Year!! I love ~ sometimes it's up to us!

Chris Phillips said...

We got the little iceball snow this week too. I disagree with your philosophy of not arguing with people crazier than yourself. I say never let anyone be crazier then you. For future reference you should have looked her in the eye and said, "If you go get the taco shells and cheese this would go a whole lot faster. We'll never make it home before Next Top Model at this rate."

24 Corners said...

Happy New Year to you and Mirelle (and possibly to Kitty too!)!
xo J~

Tempo said...

Yeah, people are so damn weird eh? but what ya gonna do! I had this conversation with my daughter today.. we agreed, people (other people) are just weirder than us.

the walking man said...

You don't like, live in Michelle Bachmann's district do you? Or are you just trying to foment seditious revolution?

Roses said...

Happy New Year my dear!

Here's to another crazy year. May 2011, be marginally less bonkers than last year (which blowed, big time).

Here's to Mirelle for being our hero. You, for sharing everything.

Here's to firemen...mmmm.....

Louisiana Belle said...

The world needs more Mirelles! Happy New Year!!

Deborah said...

Miss Pearl, may I steal your Mirelle? And a couple of those firefighters? I agree with that commenter above, your neighborhood truly trumps mine.

Happy New Year and yes, sometimes it is up to us.