Rain continues to pour and I know exactly who to blame; karma. Karma is my go-to diagnosis for any set back that ungratefully plops its company onto the cushions of my life. Karma is the most understandable, albeit annoying, victim during the blame game. I think, at least.
I entered high school learning blame placement was not only strategic but vital for times when I wanted a social life outside Mario Kart characters. First and foremost, it needed to be a classmate. Blaming siblings gets messy and in my dad’s eyes, should never be done. I also needed to choose someone with an unassuming name who was like…mmm… a shaving razor amount of disposable. I’d use the newer, guaranteed no-wounds option if it were there, otherwise, the previously used was better than nothing and after, the name would be a toss without a loss.
Michael Stewart. Thanks for being a wonderful, disposable classmate. And thank you for being a drunk. You sculpted me into a character of class when I drove you safely home, disobeying my own curfew and skipping sleep on school nights because you loved that bottle. Unfortunately, I did nothing for Michael’s unknown sacrifice besides waste gas while I attempted to experience what the thrill of sneaking out was all about. In the end, it wasn’t the sneaking out that provided the thrill but the donut and the 35 cents I saved purchasing it at half off that made my heart beat. Eventually, I realized my parents would figure out that Michael Stewart didn’t actually drink this much because anyone I’d make an effort to save in the middle of the night, they’d surely have already met. I could have spent effort ensuring they thought he did drink that much but that would risk my parents feeling guilty they raised a daughter that was blatantly being used.
So I just started blaming anything and everything on my in-class friend Alex Swift hoping that if I blamed him enough, karma would make him my real friend and I’d adjust my parents opinion of him from there.
In the end, I continued to blame him even after my parents met him. “Swift made me do it” was my easiest way out of trouble. I think my mom understood after I showed her his sophomore-year yearbook picture. She couldn’t be mad at him because he talented-ly took a picture that charmed both girls and mothers from a two-dimensional, one-inch square. And his white t-shirt said he wasn’t even trying. Simultaneously, my mom also couldn’t be mad at me because she pitied the pathetic state I encompassed with hearts in my eyes filtering my logic into what I established as my new logic. Anything Swift did, I did too.
But I’m 24 now and although my mom still maintains that ‘Swift could light our house on fire and I couldn’t stay mad at him’, I thought blaming karma was a more grown up move. It’s about time, actually, it’s probably 10 years past ‘it’s about time,’ that I start taking responsibility for my own failures and mishaps. But that’s where karma fits in even more. You see, I experience a lot of those, and if I took direct blame for each one right away then well, I’d die. Truly, I would die. In biblical times, at least. They’d chop off all my phalanges and limbs and probably even my head claiming it equal punishment for the plethora of “getting drunk and ____” phrases applicable to my life or gluttony or correctly assuming the bad driver in front of me was Asian. And all that they’d leave me with is my torso. (The fact I am convinced I could go on living with just a heart and a set of lungs will not be implied here. This story is already way off topic…and don’t think I don’t know that). The good thing about being punished in biblical times is that I don’t live in biblical times. I live in a time where karma exists.
Karma, works like a credit card. You pay later. Allowing us to take blame for unreasonable splurges only this time your character owes good deeds and not your checking account. And I’m old enough to know that money is more important than my character right now. It really makes the blow a lot less acute. Sometimes I think karma was invented specifically to keep me alive and moving ahead with dignity. Seemingly keeping up with my peers but all the while cutting a deal with the man above.
This whole post was supposed to be about the rain falling and how if the rain continues to fall all summer then I won’t be going on the river because it will be too dangerous. Which is karma because the river is the 3rd thing in my life so far that has kept my attention longer than two consecutive months and I’m determined to follow through because the first 2 I’ve already given up on. And I guess karma really doesn’t like people who don’t follow through and give up because I was willing to do the rain dance I learned during motorcycle class which on one side consists of keeping your rain gear on to stop the rain and the other side of taking it off to begin the rains. I was going to live in my rain gear all summer when I recalled the lesson, but then I discovered that I left all my rain gear strewn about the motorcycle trailer like some kind of chump. So now I don’t know what I’m going to do about stopping the rain. Maybe, maaaybeee…I could pause this notion of paying for my own failures, and you guys could go back to helping me out and sit around in your rain gear all summer? Or we could just blame Swift, look at his sophomore year school picture, forgive him, and move on from this set-back.