(So just as an author’s note – I know our movie reviews are due this week. I detest anything that smacks of a book report; so far as I’m concerned, it’s nothing more than a way of proving that yes, you actually did do the assignment. I’ll get it done, no fear. Thing is, I can actually spot the requisite keys – DMP, PMA, POA, MMA – in just about every movie I see these days; once you’re conscious of the fact those elements exist, you see them everywhere. But the story below is the important bits of this week.)
I have issues with the concept of ‘give more, get more.’ When interpreted a certain way, the principle seems to suggest that giving is essentially selfish. If we must give in order to get – and everyone wants to get something – how then are we not being self-serving in giving, knowing we will be given what we desire (so long as it does not take another’s good) in exchange? It seems to reduce the spiritual choice of giving to a cold, rational equation. And that, quite frankly, is not why I give my time, my feeling, my thought, and yes, my money, in an effort to find or create gifts other people might like. And I can’t help thinking that giving because you can’t get unless and until you give will contaminate whatever the Universe tries to give you. Intention counts. Intention always counts.
But. There is no question that an exchange is taking place.
My buddy Ivan is a great guy; generous, inclusive, supportive. He’s also quietly imaginative, self-contained, somewhat… hmm… antisocial definitely isn’t the right word; he enjoys being around people who are upbeat, don’t constantly complain, have good senses of humor, but he also very much enjoys solitude – particularly when he’s working on a photography project. Introverted, maybe… though that doesn’t really ring true, either.
Anyway. Ivan is the reason I and my brother Ted have a place to go hunting; Ivan invited us both into the hunting group, and his family owns 300+ acres here in southern Minnesota. Well, Ted found a CD that Ivan has always wanted and gave it to him for Christmas – because he knew Ivan wanted it, and he was grateful for Ivan’s friendship and the long-standing invitation into the hunting group. Well, like I said last week, Jerry and I (and Ted and Mom and Dad) all went out east to visit family for the holiday; it snowed about six inches while we were gone. Jerry and I were on our way home, I was fairly sure the township road we live on had been plowed, but I wasn’t looking forward to needing to snowblow the driveway – particularly after nearly a week in seventy-degree temperatures!
But as we turned up the driveway from the township road, I saw that the driveway itself had been plowed, all the way up to the garage. I was thrilled. Seriously, there is nothing like that feeling; seeing the cleared area, knowing I won’t have to deal with the snowblower, excitement as I wonder who might have done us such a wonderful kindness!
(Ivan said it was the snowplow fairies.)
Well, as I was shoveling the deck, I was thinking about my folks, still out east until after the 31st. They live about twenty minutes away, so more than likely their driveway needed doing, too. I thought about the lovely surprise Jerry and I had been given, and thought, we should give my folks that same gift.
So we took a trip over to their house, only to find their driveway had been plowed out, too!
I’m still going back tomorrow to check the mousetraps, snowblow the sidewalk, and create a path to the propane tank for the LP guy. Because I like to be kind to the people who deliver the fuel, and if I were them, I’d rather not have to slog through the snow to get to the tank. And because I know my parents like to have the sidewalks clear and I would rather Dad not have to do it – because he’ll be thinking about needing to do it in ten-to-fifteen degree weather after being out east for a week of seventyish-degree temperatures.
And that is harmony.