Saturday, September 19, 2009

The Dance...

I witnessed a funny little interaction the other day as I was sitting on the patio of my local Starbuck's sipping my latte and contemplating life.  A Fed Ex truck pulled up and parked illegally in front of the Starbuck's.  The driver jumped out and flew across the street to pick up a package.  In the meantime, a police officer came by and started writing up a ticket.  

So, I'm figuring that the Fed Ex driver is going to come back and be irate about the ticket. Instead, he calmly returns to his truck, approaches the police officer, who is still in the process of writing his ticket, and gives him a big smile.

"Hey Frank," the Fed Ex driver says to the cop.

"Oh, hey Joe," the cop replies, "How's your day going?"

"Good, good.  How's the family?"

"Oh, they're great, thanks."  The cop finishes writing the ticket and hands it over to the Fed Ex driver who accepts it graciously and puts it in his pocket.

They part with a smile and a, "Have a great day.  See you later."

The whole scene reminded me of the old Looney Tunes cartoon with the wolf and the sheepdog who clock in every morning to their respective jobs; Ralph the wolf goes after the sheep that Sam the sheepdog watches over. Ralph uses all manner of Acme gadgets and his wily ways to outwit Sam and steal the sheep. But he never prevails over Sam's calm, cool sheepdog skills. 

The funniest part of the cartoon though is how they would suspend their rivalry when the whistle blew signaling break time and sit down and enjoy lunch and a cigarette together.  And then once break time is over, they'd be back at it again. When the workday ends, they go off to their respective homes with a "Good night, Ralph,"  "Good night, Sam."  

Ralph and Sam are not so different than the cop and the Fed Ex driver.  We all have our roles to play in this life.  It's not personal.  We do our dance and when it's done, it's done.  

It's all so very entertaining.

tall penguin


Phaedron Rising said...

You're absolutely right.

Too bad that story's such a rare thing. Most tend to make a catastrophe out of every little event.

Either that, or the FedEx driver doesn't pey for the tickets himself, and he doesn't want his boss to look good after the next expense report.

Phaedron Rising said...

I just misspelled "pay."

No more hung-over commenting for me.

tall penguin said...

Ya, I don't expect that the Fed Ex driver pays for the tickets. I'm sure it's a company expense. But still, many people would take the opportunity to bitch at a cop if given it.

And it was the beauty of the dance that so enthralled me. I love watching life unfold like this. Those rare, sublime moments when people can see other people beyond the roles that they play.

Jon said...

some say that all of life can be explained by the simpsons... I say that they're too young!!! it's all in looney toones!!!

but as a side note... I just wish that the coyote would just get one sheep!!!