Monday, December 10, 2007

This Message Brought To You...

Pretty Lady had a lovely time in Pittsburgh! Dear Jean, Susan, John and Mary all conspired to make her trip as delightful as possible. It all seemed one big Whirlwind of Lights.

And on the way home, Pretty Lady got to be a Messenger of the Holy Spirit! Her cup runneth over.

You see, on the way home, the Holy Spirit saw fit to shred Pretty Lady's front driver-side tire, on I-80, in the dark and freezing rain.

This was no biggie. Although Pretty Lady discarded that ridiculous spare wheel a couple of years back, since it took up so much space in her trunk that there was no point in even having a 4-wheeler, she has that splendid modern convenience, a cell phone. Plus 24-hour emergency road service. Pretty Lady Remained Calm, and soon the expected angel arrived. The angel's name was Wally. He was prompt, courteous, and performed a quite elegantly heroic back-up maneuver on I-80 in the freezing rain. Pretty Lady commended him warmly. The Holy Spirit had no message for Wally, except 'Keep up the good work.'

Tires, said Wally, should ordinarily not come off in two pieces.

No, as soon as Pretty Lady's tire was safely replaced, the Holy Spirit whisked dear Wally off to another emergency, leaving Pretty Lady alone with an unfinished invoice. "It won't take long," said Wally. "Why don't you grab a meal at the Tannersville Diner?"

The Tannersville Diner, due to the promptings of Fate, decided to close three hours early. "The towing company has an office. You can sit there," said the Tannersville Diner staff, closing the door in Pretty Lady's wet, hungry, stranded face.

Pretty Lady returned to the office, which consisted of a short, grimy hallway, a door marked 'Employees only,' and a window, behind which sat an obese individual. This individual did not look up or acknowledge Pretty Lady's presence. He sat and grunted into a telephone, in an indifferent monotone. His conversation consisted solely of phrases like 'Nothing,' and 'That's not our service area,' and 'We can't be there for over an hour.'

Pretty Lady stood in the hallway.

After about twenty minutes she stated, 'My car is finished. Isn't there a way you could finish my invoice and let me out of here?'

'I can't leave the phone,' was the reply.

'I am perfectly capable of opening a door and fetching an invoice myself,' said Pretty Lady, testily.

Pretty Lady stood in the hallway.

After about twenty minutes more, she stuck her head through the window and stated, pointedly, 'Oh, I see you have an extra chair in there.'

Some mumbling gave Pretty Lady to indicate that she might borrow the chair.

Twenty minutes later, a tow-truck driver entered. 'You are here to process my invoice and release my vehicle,' Pretty Lady informed him. She hustled the man out to the garage, where he engaged Wally on the telephone and torturously made out the invoice.

While he was doing so, the Holy Spirit made some intentions clear to Pretty Lady. As directed, she returned to the dispatch office and delivered the message.

'I have something to say to you. You are a Slob. I have sat here for one hour and listened to you be rude to people in distress; I have watched you be rude to me. It is your choice to be a Slob. You can choose to live your life with grace, to treat people with kindness, to be a good person, or you can continue to be a Slob. It is your choice.'

Pretty Lady exited forthwith, and made her way gratefully back to New York, where her Gentleman Friend had made dinner, cleaned up, lit the candles, and put on a DVD. She has no idea whether the Holy Spirit's admonitions were attended to. This is none of her concern.


Anonymous said...

I heart you, Pretty Lady. Not everyone has what it takes to be a graceful conduit for the Holy Spirit's more . . . unpleasant messages.

Pretty Lady said...

Thank you, Mitzi! It took Pretty Lady herself ever so long to realize that the messages aren't always pleasant, and that Losing One's Temper is not necessarily a failure to heed them.

Chris Rywalt said...

That is one seriously disasterized tire. I don't think I've ever seen one that bad.

Pretty Lady said...

You should have heard the noise it made.

Anonymous said...

I'm no mechanic but you probably want to get your other tires checked out and replaced. Looks like that one was quite worn out.

Not Fainthearted said...

Isn't it awesome to get to be a conduit now and then? Excellent job.

Anonymous said...

I love the photos. I had something related to that tire in high school. In my case the tread came off due to serious abuse and not getting to tending that bumpy symptom. (Me? Neglect my car?) However, I did not see the actual tube under it. Worth a chuckle.

I love your phrasing of his problem. Not a tirade, just a set of accurate facts and some helpful thoughts. Sounds satisfying.


Anonymous said...

Probably made a nasty noise. What is interesting is hearing one from a truck when they blow like that.

Oh, and hi Pretty Lady.. It's been a while, no?

Desert Cat said...

I wrote about the catastrophic loss of tread on my camper a while back.

t is a good thing it stayed in one piece in your case. A flailing tread can do an amazing amount of damage in a short period of time.

k said...

That was one spectacular tire.

And on the other?

Boy oh boy. You done good.