Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Feelin' Salty

For much of the month of December I was in a jolly and generous mood. As usual, I bought gifts I could not afford, baked hundreds of gingerbread men, sent about ninety Christmas cards, decorated the house inside and out, and wrote and called elderly relatives and friends. This mood fell over into my school life where it's practical effect was that I gave people rides. I had a strong urge to buy Christmas presents for everyone -- and their kids -- so it's kind of a good thing I no longer have (what I now refer to) as "New York Money." But I digress... Back to the rides. Most of the women I'm in school with are transportation-challenged. They take the bus. Or they have an old, beat-up, unreliable car. And when you're taking the bus because it's what you can afford, it's not like taking the bus (or the train) in New York (where you take it because it's the fastest way to get where you're going. In fact, last week (when I was in New York) I noticed several women in mink coats and people reading kindles on the subway -- that's new... People with big "New York Money" on the F train. But again I digress.) Taking the bus in Cincinnati is a real pain in the ass because the bus does not go where you're going; so you have to go way out of your way, and then change buses to get where you're going -- which is usually to work. So in addition to going to school twenty-five hours a week, they're working twenty-five to thirty hours a week. I don't know how they do it. Especially when you factor in the freakin' bus. And kids! I can drive from school to Hyde Park in about twenty minutes. On the bus it takes about an hour an a half (cause you have to change busses down-town).

So in my happy, generous Christmas mood I started giving people rides. Rides to their second bus stop, rides to work, rides home. I actually enjoy the time with my new friends. But there are also people I don't like very much who ask for rides; and abuse my generosity. And now it's January and I'm all salty (see post from 11/10/09) and I don't want to give rides. I need time to do my own stuff. I start thinking things like "well if you'd stayed in high school," "if you hadn't had a baby when you were 15," "if you did have SEVEN children," "if you weren't stoned all the time....." So I'm all salty and getting saltier because the bus stop in front of school got moved about a quarter of a mile up the road and with all the complaining you'd think it was two miles away. "Hell -- In New York, I walked to the station from my house, and from Grand Central Station to my office five city blocks away -- in the rain, snow, heat, cold. And it was nothing, nothing! And you're NOT EVEN 30 YEARS OLD -- GET USE TO IT." I've been thinking.

Then just a few hours later, as I sat down to teach CCD to second graders, I was struck by the opening Bible reading from Matthew 25:40

Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these
least brothers of mine, you did for me.

So now I feel like a total shit, and am trying to be more like Jesus. And really, the new bus stop is on my way home anyway.


Kelly Bean said...

Cynthia!!! It's been three days since you posted. That's too long! BTW...I was feeling salty myself today, although before I read your post I never really had a word for that feeling. So, "salty" is now my new favorite word.

Decar8ishMom said...

C'mon...let's be honest...that walk from Fleetwood home was NOT nothing to you for a long, long time! yes, be more like Jesus. And "salty"?? I guess that's a cranky "spicy"?? :-)

And that redhead...I think she will be considering brunette in the future!!

AdMom24 said...

Hey, I'm not complaining about the walk to Fleetwood -- just the opposite. "It was NOTHING..." Well, except in the extreme heat and cold. .. and it really was the thing that finally drove me out of New York. So I guess you are right. There's an article in this week's Newsweek that lists the commuting times for different states -- New York has the highest at just over half an hour. What they don't say is that that 32 minute commute is the time it takes to get from Eastern Long Island or Connecticut or Pennsylvania to Mid-Town combined with the commuting time of the guy who lives two blocks away and gets to his workplace in four minutes.