a lesson in faith

i got a twitter direct message from a young lady who said she wanted to meet me.

that’s nothing new. look how handsome and successful i am!

she said she had been reading the busblog since 2003, was friends with Moxie, and wanted to make an authentic Indian dinner for Amber and I and then tell us a great story.

apparently somewhere i said online that i liked to hear great stories. (which is true)

the problem is all of that could have been lies. anyone can say theyre friends with anyone. who knows.

meanwhile i am meeting more than my fair share of strangers on my secret project and one weird little quirk about me: i don’t like plans, planning, or having to be somewhere at a certain time and place. i would much rather someone be spontaneous with me and say yo tony tomorrow we’re gonna blah blah blah come over.

but truth be told id probably figure out a way to avoid that too because deep down im a very shy person who wants to move to central oregon and live on a farm and raise weed that i can sell and give the profits to orphans and invest in half way houses for drunks and drug addicts.

but somewhere i read someone saying that she was going to start saying yes to things. and i thought that was an interesting approach at life. i know how frustrating it is to have a well of brilliant ideas and have one person after another say no to me for a variety of reasons.

so i said yes to this internet stranger who i had never met and amber said are you crazy, theyre going to kill you and bury your remains in the backyard like they did with that wall street journal guy.

i said, i have never said anything bad about the saudi royal family! she said yes but you regularily berate trump and moxie is a republican which means this young lady is probably republican too which means theyre digging a hole right now for you and they’ll torture you too if you go there.

so she was out. plus she was feeling sick.

i Googled “what wine goes well with Indian food?” i went to the store, bought two bottles and drove to the address. (Google said white!) on the way i called my mom who said “ive raised a fool. text me when this is over so i know youre not dead.”

got to the house and weirdly it was about three blocks from the Academy in beverly hills, on a street that i had walked maybe 100 times on my way to my favorite chinese joint. the house was colorful and beautiful. i was introduced to her soft spoken brother, his beautiful wife, and their youngest son, a teenager attending beverly hills high school. i couldn’t have found a nicer family to be murdered by.

he offered me an IPA and i accepted. would it be poisoned?

earlier i had told my mom that if things had worked out differently i would have been a monk or a priest and one of the things youre supposed to do is eat, when invited, at the homes of the parishioners. and they are supposed to invite you over since you are penniless. of course i said this on blue tooth through the most expensive iphone apple has ever made while in a mercedes benz. but still the principal remained: in life we should ask for the things that we want, and if someone asks something of us, we should do our best to say yes.

especially if there’s nothing in it for us.

im not a monk. i can pay for my own meal. i can find plenty of people to break bread with. why do it with strangers? simple: they asked.

her name was Sunana, but because i had never met her i didnt know how to pronounce it. on the way  over i practiced: sun-anna? sue-nana? Google was no help. neither was Siri. but fortunately through conversation i heard her sister say it and i was in the clear.

both her brother and sister in law are doctors and the teen wants to be one too. Sunana is a fantastic cook and the only republican of the bunch. but everyone loved her for good reason. she is very sweet and brought me there not for evil, but to see if i could help her brother.

help? thats what a monk loves to do most of all!

because everyone was so smart the conversation went from sports to politics to medicine to education to LA to the midwest (they’re all midwesterners) to my secret project and finally to how i could help.

i heard the fascinating story. i agreed to help. i gave them three names. but later i decided to reach out to a fourth and a fifth. we chatted for maybe four hours. Sunana sent me home with a tupperwear of three of the dishes we had eaten and i have to tell you

i loved every second of it.

it was a warm, beautiful home, inhabited by warm beautiful people who have spent their lives serving strangers via garnering as much education that they could collect. her brother is a cancer researcher, for goodness sake, which i always considered a lost cause because lets get real, how many times have we heard of someone getting cancer and it kills them? but unlike me, bro is no quitter. he sees challenges and accepts them. he is met with a problem and says ok how do we fix this? which is what i am all about too. (sometimes) (rarely)

one of the funniest moments was when he mentioned the bible and Jesus and i said “oh so you are Christians?” and the ladies said. “no we are Hindu, this is the first we’ve heard him mention Jesus!”

when the Cubs won the World Series two Octobers ago a few things happened to me and a few of my friends. one of them was we had to re-evaluate our life goals. little had we known but having the Cubs win was our #1 goal. even though we couldn’t really do anything about it. and once they won, and the immediate euphoria had passed, some of us felt confused and a bit depressed and rudderless.

me, i started not giving a crap about anything else. wanna kill me and bury me in your backyard? who cares, we won the World Series.

but the good news about not giving a crap is you are free.

whatever this new chapter is about, is truly new and truly unique because it is not anchored to anything else.

what do you do when the monkey is off your back?

go apeshit.



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