Sunday, September 25, 2011

She drives for a relationship, he's lost in the transmission.

By: Dave Berry

Contrary to what many women believe, it's fairly easy to develop along-term, stable, intimate, and mutually fulfilling relationship with a guy. Of course this guy has to be a Labrador retriever. With human guys, it's extremely difficult. This is because guys don't really grasp what women mean by the term relationship.

Let's say a guy named Roger is attracted to a woman named Elaine. He asks her out to a movie; she accepts; they have a pretty good time. A few nights later he asks her out to dinner, and again they enjoy themselves. They continue to see each other regularly, and after a while neither one of them is seeing anybody else.

And then, one evening when they're driving home, a thought occurs to Elaine, and, without really thinking, she says it aloud: "Do you realize that, as of tonight, we've been seeing each other for exactly six months?"

And then there is silence in the car. To Elaine, it seems like a veryloud silence. She thinks to herself: Geez, I wonder if it bothers him that I said that. Maybe he's been feeling confined by our relationship; maybe he thinks I'm trying to push him into some kind of obligation that he doesn't want, or isn't sure of.

And Roger is thinking: Gosh. Six months.

And Elaine is thinking: But, hey, I'm not so sure I want this kind of relationship, either. Sometimes I wish I had a little more space, so I'd have time to think about whether I really want us to keep going the way we are, moving steadily toward... I mean, where are we going? Are we just going to keep seeing each other at this level of intimacy? Are we heading toward marriage? Toward children? Toward a lifetime together? Am I ready for that level of commitment? Do I really even know this person?

And Roger is thinking:... so that means it was... let's see...February when we started going out, which was right after I had the car at the dealer's, which means... lemme check the odometer... Whoa! I am way over due for an oil change here.

And Elaine is thinking: He's upset. I can see it on his face. Maybe I'm reading this completely wrong. Maybe he wants more from our relationship, more intimacy, more commitment; maybe he has sensed -- even before I sensed it -- that I was feeling some reservations. Yes, I bet that's it. That's why he's so reluctant to say anything about his own feelings. He's afraid of being rejected.

And Roger is thinking: And I'm gonna have them look at the transmission again. I don't care what those morons say, it's still not shifting right. And they better not try to blame it on the cold weather this time. What cold weather? It's 87 degrees out, and this thing is shifting like a garbage truck, and I paid those incompetent thieves $600.


And Elaine is thinking: He's angry. And I don't blame him. I'd be angry, too. God, I feel so guilty, putting him through this, but I can't help the way I feel. I'm just not sure.

And Roger is thinking: They'll probably say it's only a 90-day warranty. That's exactly what they're gonna say, the scumballs.

And Elaine is thinking: Maybe I'm just too idealistic, waiting for a knight to come riding up on his white horse, when I'm sitting right next to a perfectly good person, a person I enjoy being with, a person I truly do care about, a person who seems to truly care about me. A person who is in pain because of my school girl romantic fantasy.

And Roger is thinking: Warranty? They want a warranty? I'll give them a warranty. I'll take their warranty and stick it right up their...

"Roger," Elaine says aloud.

"What?" says Roger, startled.

"Please don't torture yourself like this," she says, her eyes beginning to brim with tears. "Maybe I should never have... Oh God, I feel so..." (She breaks down, sobbing.)

"What?" says Roger.

"I'm such a fool," Elaine sobs. "I mean, I know there's no knight. I really know that. It's silly. There's no knight, and there's no horse."

"There's no horse?" says Roger.

"You think I'm a fool, don't you?" Elaine says.

"No!" says Roger, glad to finally know the correct answer.

"It's just that... It's that I... I need some time," Elaine says.
(There is a 15-second pause while Roger, thinking as fast as he can,tries to come up with a safe response. Finally he comes up with one tha the thinks might work.)

"Yes," he says.

(Elaine, deeply moved, touches his hand.)

"Oh, Roger, do you really feel that way?" she says.

"What way?" says Roger.

"That way about time," says Elaine.

"Oh," says Roger. "Yes."
(Elaine turns to face him and gazes deeply into his eyes, causing him to become very nervous about what she might say next, especially if it involves a horse. At last she speaks.)

"Thank you, Roger," she says.

"Thank you," says Roger. Then he takes her home, and she lies on her bed, a conflicted, tortured soul, and weeps until dawn, whereas when Roger gets back to his place, he opens a bag of Doritos, turns on the TV, and immediately becomes deeply involved in a rerun of a tennis match between two Czechoslovakians he never heard of. A tiny voice in the far recesses of his mind tells him that something major was going on back there in the car, but he is pretty sure there is no way he would ever understand what, and so he figures it's better if he doesn't think about it.
(This is also Roger's policy regarding world hunger.)


The next day Elaine will call her closest friend, or perhaps two of them, and they will talk about this situation for six straight hours. In painstaking detail, they will analyze everything she said and every thing he said, going over it time and time again, exploring every word, expression,and gesture for nuances of meaning, considering every possible ramification. They will continue to discuss this subject, off and on, for weeks, maybe months, never reaching any definite conclusions, but never getting bored with it, either.

Meanwhile, Roger, while playing racquetball one day with a mutual friend of his and Elaine's, will pause just before serving, frown, and say: "Norm, did Elaine ever own a horse?"

We're not talking about different wavelengths here. We're talking about different planets, in completely different solar systems. Elaine cannot communicate meaningfully with Roger about their relationship anymore than she can meaningfully play chess with a duck. Because the sum total of Roger's thinking on this particular topic is as follows:


But the point I'm trying to make is that, if you're a woman, and you want to have a successful relationship with a guy, the No. 1 tip to remember is: 1. Never assume that the guy understands that you and he have a relationship. The guy will not realize this on his own. You have to plant the idea in his brain by constantly making subtle references to it in your everyday conversation, such as:
-- "Roger, would you mind passing me a Sweet 'n' Low, in as much as we have a relationship?"
-- "Wake up, Roger! There's a prowler in the den and we have a relationship! You and I do, I mean."
-- "Good News, Roger! The gynecologist says we're going to have our fourth child, which will serve as yet another indication that we have arelationship!"
-- "Roger, inasmuch as this plane is crashing and we probably have only about a minute to live, I want you to know that we've had a wonderful 53 years of marriage together, which clearly constitutes a relationship."

Never let up, women. Pound away relentlessly at this concept, and eventually it will start to penetrate the guy's brain. Some day he might even start thinking about it on his own. He'll be talking with some other guys about women, and, out of the blue, he'll say, "Elaine and I, we have, ummm... We have, ahhh... We... We have this thing." And he will sincerely mean it.

The next relationship-enhancement tip is: 2. Do not expect the guy to make a hasty commitment. By "hasty," I mean, "within your lifetime." Guys are extremely reluctant to make commitments. This is because they never feel ready.

"I'm sorry," guys are always telling women, "but I'm just not ready to make a commitment." Guys are in a permanent state of nonreadiness. If guys were turkey breasts, you could put them in a 350-degree oven on July Fourth, and they still wouldn't be done in time for Thanksgiving.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

The Girl

WARNING: a result of post nap delirium

Hair cascades down the table like a waterfall.
Dark curls, full and round.
Soft as a robins feather, beautiful as an angel.
Her head, tilted sideways.
Blushing cheeks, red and round.
A slight smile, on the edge of her lips. Like a secret is there, waiting to be told.
Her arms are elegantly crossed under her head.
Her flowing gown reaches the floor, grazing her petite bare feet.
Her eyes are closed.
And not one breath escapes her lips.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Betcha didn't know...

I like my cookie dough BEFORE the chocolate chips are put in.

Sunday, September 11, 2011


I was in second grade. It was a normal day. I was walking to the bus stop. As I walked up, all the other kids are talking.
"Did ya hear?" A wise 5th grader asks.
I feel like this is a joke. I'm gonna ask what they're talking about and they'll make fun of something I said.
"What ya eatin' under there?"
"Under where?"
"Ha! You're eating underwear!"
"Heard what?"
"The towers. A big plane crashed into two towers."
I don't know about you, but as a little girl in 2nd grade, I automatically hear the word tower and think of a castle. Like, a princess locked in one.
"They're on fire."
My confusion rises. Don't dragons set towers on fire? Planes don't even produce fire.

Our bus comes.

"Did you hear did you hear?"
There's a buzz on the bus as everyone talks about the planes.
The bus driver isn't listening to country music, instead she's listening to a man talk.
I get bored and look outside.

In class Mrs. Holbrook explains, "A plane crashed into some buildings in New York."
New York?
Why had I heard that before?
Chad. Chad was in New York a few weeks ago.

The TV is on mute. we see images of fires, people crying, and fire trucks.

"Mrs. Holbrook, why did the man do that?"
"I don't know."

The summer before 5th grade.
We are in New York on a church history tour.
"Alright guys, we have one day, what should we do?"
I'm the baby. Somehow the decision was made that we would go to ground zero.
What the heck was a place with no ground?
We went and Chanelle and I were holding my daddy's hands so we wouldn't get lost.
We looked out big windows. There was a big lot. Full of ash and charred wood. People were crying.
"Aubs, you see that over there? That's the World Trade Center. This is where 9/11 happened."

It suddenly clicked. 9/11 was suddenly very real to me. Before it was just pictures on TV, letters to the fire fighters I had written. Songs about freedom I had sung. Everything was real.
This was where some people died. I looked at my brothers and sisters and imagined what it'd be like if they were gone.

"Mom, do you remember where you were?"
"I was in the kitchen. That phone rang. It was grandma. I didn't believe her. I thought she didn't know what she was talking about. It seemed too crazy."

A poem by Chanelle, 5th grade.

Thank You

When I first heard what happened I didn't understand. Then I watched selfless Americans.
I'd like to say,


I watched so many people help, rescue, comfort, and recover. All the firefighters, policemen, and doctors. They are all great heros brave and strong.
I'd like to say,


To all the people that were on the plane that sacrificed their lives, to save many others.
I'd like to say,


To the people who are helping dig through the debris recovering bodies. Never giving up.
I'd like to say,


Thursday, September 8, 2011

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

"I march to the drum of no one, other than God"

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Inspired from a Facebook conversation

One thing that bothers me is how people fail to realize how superb they are.

In these times, it's easy to dwell on what you aren't.
"I'm not in A Capella"
"I'm not in that AP class"
"I'm not pretty enough"
"I'm NEVER getting asked to Homecoming"
I desire so much to go up to everyone.

To stare into their eyes.

Eyes are the biggest give away to anyone. They can say they're fine, but you look in their eyes.
And just a ting of regret

Oh but when they look back. When they open their heart to you. You can see it.

The light of Christ.

I wish I could walk up to one of my brothers and sisters in the Gospel. To hold their hand and say, "You are extraordinary. God has blessed you with unique and wonderful talents for you to bless someone's life. You are a child of the divine creator, and therefore, so talented and amazing."

That's what makes me the saddest. When you see someone, a friend, colleague, a.q. And they have forgotten who they were, and let Satan tell them who he wants them to be.

Oh everyone, please do not forget your infinite worth. Please love, and respect this beautiful gift of life.

And please, know that I love you, and my arms are forever open for a hug.