• Bridge Ladies

    Bridge Ladies Sometimes I think a meteor could strike the earth and wipe out mankind with the exception of my mother’s Bridge club — Roz, Bea, Bette, Rhoda, and Jackie — five Jewish octogenarians who continue to gather for lunch and Bridge on Mondays as they have for over fifty years. When I set out to learn about the women behind the matching outfits and accessories, I never expected to fall in love with them. This is the story of the ladies, their game, and most of all the ragged path that led me back to my mother.
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And (and) (and) you put the load right on me

Yesterday, on the way back to my office after a lovely lunch with one of my favorite editors, I saw a young woman waving a clipboard. We made eye contact and she had a big smile. “Shit,” I thought. I don’t want to stop. I don’t want to hear about saving whales, the environment, supporting NPR, Planned Parenthood, etc. I want to get back to my office and do more email. As I got closer, she took a few steps closer to me and started her pitch. And I went down. I don’t know if I tripped, or caught my sandal on something, or blacked out, or was abducted, but I went right down the sidewalk on my hands and knees.

I’m writing from my tv room watching the season 2 finale. My foot elevated, my big toe iced. Do you believe in karma?

16 Responses

  1. Yes. I believe in Karma. I told her I’d marry her. Then I reneged.

    Been payin’ for it ever since.

    (As for sidewalked accostations in any free enterprise zone, a clipboarded and vested doer of many goods thought to stop me on my way to the El (what we call the subway ’round here) by stepping between me and a green-manned crosswalk light and saying, “You look like a nice person,” to which I responded, as I stepped around him, “Fooled the fuck out of you, didn’t I?” The karma bill hasn’t come in on that one, yet.)

  2. Clipboards, firefighter boots, 5Ks and cardboard signs and those bell-ringers outside the stores in December. Whatever the cause, I tend to capitulate immediately, and not because I fear the cold hand of karma but because I’m imbued with that good-girl laziness that makes saying yes the easier response. Any survey-taker can have his way with me.

    • Ah, dollar bills in my pocket (during the season) allows me passage through the gauntlet of giving. At that time of year I figure Karma wears a red suit and has a bushy white beard.
      As for taking a header, Karma carries a big stick, scatters banana peels and builds unpainted speed bumps. When it infiltrates humans, like the ones with torches that surround your castle, that’s the worst.

  3. No, but sometimes it’s really hard not to.

  4. Yep. Absolutely. Mine usually appears like yours–immediately. And then more later so I’ll really get the message.

  5. Yeah, sure. Like if you toss coins of golden goodness out to the world they come back manifold. What goes around comes around, right? People get what they deserve, isn’t that so? I try to be a good person, just in case…

  6. I do, because I can’t help but think of the “timing” of various events in my life. Maybe it’s luck. Maybe it’s karma. Maybe it’s nothing but pure coincidence, only sometimes what happens is so very timely, I can’t help but think it’s more than that.

  7. No, I don’t believe in karma. It strikes me as one of the earlier attempts to base morality on a supposed metaphysical dimension, and it runs into the same problem as other such attempts: there’s no way to demonstrate it. Can it not suffice to recall Auden? “What all schoolchildren learn, / Those to whom evil is done / Do evil in return.” Or we can learn from our own experience; as I think Stanislaw Lem put it in a story (which I don’t have time to look up), anything that diminishes consciousness is, on the face of it, wrong.

  8. I heard a Christian fundamentalist say ” Those people that believe in karma are gonna get what they’ve got coming to them on judgement day!” I still chuckle about that.

    I don’t worry much about anyone, myself included, getting what they’ve got coming to them. But there’s no shortage of pain and cruelty, and the cosmos needs none from me.

    Finding a course and steering through the shoals can be a bitch, but it’s what we do.

  9. Pretty sure it’s the first law of physics. Bad karma and the shit comes down.

  10. Yeah, and somehow it’s connected to the twins, Hope and Despair. Hope saw you coming down the street, happy, tripping the light fantastic. Trying to side step instead of pirouette, Despair tripped you up. With any Luck, Kindness helped you to your feet, battered, bruised, but still truckin’.
    Did you ever find out what cause the young woman was drumming up support for? I mean, hopefully it wasn’t to save the Tangiers TOEwhee, because that would open up a whole different can of worms.

  11. Not Karma, per se. But signs & wonders? For sure! I think FALLING is one of the biggest signs of all. You have to fall in order to rise. So, I see falling as a wonderful thing. You’re on your way, Betsy!

  12. Yes, in some form. But, more importantly—have you got to OMAR yet?

    ps sorry about your foot; she will get hers !!!

    Sent from my iPhone


  13. Sounds like payback from the whales. Still, it’s an opportunity to power through Season 3. Season 4 was, for me, the high point, equally tragic and poignant. Great tv. Great anything. I too wonder if you’ve gotten to Omar yet. Now whenever I see Michael K. Williams in anything, I want to stand up and shout “Omar coming!”

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