Sunday, February 11, 2018

The Question

Todd got out of bed. He looked in the mirror, shook his head. “How could I have gotten this way”, he thought to himself. “I used to be… well I used to be younger, that’s true,” he thought to himself, “…but now? Oh dear, I look like an unmade bed.”

He went to the bathroom, took a shower - a nice long one because it was his day off and he decided he would get dressed up in his best clothes. It had been a very long time since he got dressed up although when he looked at his wardrobe he was concerned that he wouldn’t fit into any of his nicer clothes anymore.

“Well,” he thought, “that’s what elastic waists are for.” He took out some of his old pants that didn’t have much wear because he bought them when he had put on weight and then he took it all off but in recent years he put back some of it - he was pretty sure he didn’t put it all back on. He tried on the elastic pants and wonder of wonders, they were loose! “This is wonderful,” he thought. And he tried on the next smaller size - still loose - and the next size.

You see, Todd is the sort of person who gains weight and looses weight and gains it again and looses it again. Some of you might know someone like that. Some of you might even resemble that but that’s alright, it’s part of life.

After a while, Todd found the size that fit him. It was somewhere between his biggest and his smallest so he didn’t feel too bad about it. Okay, it did have an elastic waist but not the whole waist, just at the sides. “So, that’s okay,” he thought with a smile.

He looked at his shirts and discovered that he did have several shirts that still fit him comfortably. He thought, “I can look nice today. I don’t have to be all rumply as I normally am in my old clothes.”

You see, Todd didn’t have to get all fancied up to do his work because his work was as a woodcarver. As a woodcarver - and he was a very good one - he didn’t have to look fancy but today was a special day. Today was the day he was going to ask his friend, whom he had known all his life - he was going to ask her out on a date. He was a shy person and never had the nerve to do that before but today was the day!

“She won’t be expecting me to look this nice”, he thought. “Normally I just look like, well, that unmade bed.”

So, he got his shoes out and polished them and brushed them to a bright shine. He thought, “It’s probably silly going to the repair shop but still…” nervously mumbling to himself getting ready but adding, “…gotta try, gotta try.”

He drove over to Crumple Repair, excited and nervous, to ask Shelly out on a real date. Everyone at the auto body repair shop knew him and called out to him as he was walking up the driveway.

Slim said, “Here comes Rumply!” “Hi Rumply,” others said and waved. Jack, who’d worked there the longest and worked for Shelly’s dad when he’d started the place, called to Shelly by her nickname at the shop, “Crumply! Rumply’s here only he looks different. Wonder what’s up?”

Shelly looked up from the dent she was pounding out, gave Todd a big smile and said to him, “You look great! What’s the occasion?”

Todd said, “I’ve known you all my life. Your my best friend in the world but your more than that to me.” Nervously, he continued, “You’re much more than that to me. Would you come out on a date with me? A real date, not just hanging out?”

Shelly got up slowly from the car she had been working on and walked up to Todd. She spread her arms out and they hugged each other. “Oh Shelly, I don’t want to complicate our friendship but I’ve loved you for a long time and just didn’t know how to say it.”

Shelly laughed and said, “I’ve loved you for years but I thought you didn’t feel that way so I made do with friendship. I love you too.”


Valentine’s Day is a time to be reminded of the value of love. Hope you have a most benevolent and lovely day. Goodlife

(photo: Photo is © B. Kim Barnes, used with permission and can be found at

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