A Piece of Thread

“Oh, here she comes.  She said she had a good story to tell me and I’m excited to hear it.  We know the people involved.  She looks nice today in that blue dress.  Fits her well.  Oh wait!  Right shoulder, I see a white piece of thread.  How could that have gotten there?  From a scarf she wore to work or her coat?

She began her story awhile ago but seems to think her back story is important to hear when it has nothing to do with the juicy part I’m waiting to hear.  Dates, times and the surrounding moods adds nothing to the plot when I’m waiting to hear the plot.  Why do people think lengthening a good story makes it better.  Just makes me bored while I stare at that attached thread.

I could pat her shoulder, that’s okay with a woman in the workplace, then I could grab that darn white thread.  It wouldn’t make sense now because there’s no reason to affirm her by a shoulder touch.  I could sneeze or cough real hard in the hope that wind would drive that damn thread off her shoulder but then I’d never hear the end of her story and she’d be mad at me for weeks.  Yet she ought to really thank me if my gusty cough did the trick and rid her blue outfit of that terribly annoying white thread.

She’s still setting the stage for a story that should have ended a long time ago.  Is my attention span shortening or is that tiresome thread going to stay on her shoulder all day?  Would someone else tell her about the white thread?  Who would that help?  Is it because I’m bothered by it or because it detracts from her blue dress?  What distraction is it to her when she doesn’t know that it’s there?  You know, maybe she put that white thread there just to see if I’d tell her about it.  But there’s no point in telling her now because I don’t think she knows what a period is or taking a breath while speaking.  Still no point to her story.  How can someone be so intense in telling me this story and not care about her appearance?  Didn’t she use the bathroom and discover that damnable white thread?  I thought women go the bathroom a lot!

I wonder if she placed that thread on herself on purpose.  Just to get attention.  I’ve heard stories about her.  With that thing people might notice her more.  Boy, what low self esteem.  I doubt she’d do that, it’d just be weird.

Now we’re inching our way to the good part of the story.  Boy, she really loves details.  If she asked me to repeat any of it, I’d be at a loss but still remember that irksome white thing that doesn’t belong against blue, unless of course there was another white thread on the other shoulder.  That could work, I think.  Some symmetry or army epaulet kind of thing going on.

Her birthday is coming up.  I could always wish her a ‘Happy Birthday’ and while hugging her use my teeth to rid her of that irritating thread.  She sure gestures a lot, you’d think the beastly thin thing would just fall off.  She needs to raise her right hand more, she must be left handed.

Finally, in her story somebody did something to someone but I missed the names and can’t ask her to back up.  I wonder if it’s just the way the light hits that nasty white piece.  If I could turn one of these lights off, it wouldn’t be so galling.

Wow.  She stopped talking awhile ago and saw my stern stare at the single white addition.  I can tell that she thinks I’m mulling over her completed story when I couldn’t tell you much about it.

She smiles and turns away from me and that horrid white thread gently floats to the ground.  She leaves and I look at the now-thing-from-Hell and wonder if I should pick it up and throw it away.  I walk in the opposite direction and wonder what story she wanted to tell me.”

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About Rev. Joe Jagodensky, SDS.

A Roman Catholic priest since 1980 and a member of the Society of the Divine Savior (Salvatorians). www.Salvatorians.com. He is associate pastor of partnering parishes, Christ King and St. Bernard parishes in Wauwatosa, WI.
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