30 July 2009

Real life reality

I am convinced that enough human drama and ridiculousness exists in every person’s life to generate an endless array of reality programs. All you need is a handful of quirky personalities, a backdrop of stress, and a few generally entertaining situations. Take my own life, for example. The cast of characters in a recent episode of my own real life reality program include my neighbor, a funny friend, a realtor and my girlfriend. The backdrop of this episode involves going out of town for a few days of rest and relaxation.

45 minutes after departure: cell phone call from unfamiliar telephone number.


“Hi Diane, this is Ann (not her real name), your neighbor. I found your kitty this morning in the alley and she is dead.”

“Oh no! Oh my goodness, this is awful. Ann, I’m not even in town right now.”

“Well I could wrap her in paper if you’d like.”

“That sounds like a good idea. I would really appreciate it.”

“What do you want me to do with her after that?”

Well, it is not easy to answer this question and the truth is I have no answer, so I reply:

“I need a few minutes to figure this out. So let me call you back if that’s OK.”

After 3 more telephone calls, and in only 5 minutes, my girlfriend and I have made arrangements for cremation and a very generous friend agrees to transport the recently departed to the veterinarian’s office. Within 30 minutes, 1 more telephone call and 6 text messages the episode concludes with confirmation: “The deed is done. That was one heavy cat.”

The backdrop of our next episode occurs the following morning. My girlfriend and I are enjoying a cup of coffee out on the porch overlooking a lake. Immediately below us is a street. As we are looking at the lake, a truck approaches and our gaze follows its path as it approaches. The truck slows and we catch a complete and unfortunate glimpse of the driver, sans pants. To make matters worse, this bottomless pervert is steering with only one hand because his other is occupied elsewhere.

Shocked and speechless, we both stare at each other in amazement for what seems like a full minute. The truck is long gone and we still cannot find words. We are both thinking – did we really just see that?

The backdrop of our next episode occurs the following afternoon. My girlfriend and I are returning home and have set up an appointment with our realtor to visit an active listing. The house is gorgeous. We both love it. The house is also huge and we are intimidated beyond description. We are almost tiptoeing through the property. We depart and immediately start discussing the possibility of extending an offer.

Ten minutes later we are home again and our realtor calls. Just making sure that we are considering both sides of the equation. As if we don’t have enough doubts on our own. Spoon on the stress.

Fade out - cut to station break.

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