Sam’s Father’s Head


When I was in my early 20’s, I helped my friend Sam move out of his condo.

There was a bunch of folks helping with the move.  We had quite a crew.

I remember that Sam’s father was helping.

He and I were carrying a couch out to the truck and when he got up in the bed of the truck to start positioning it, his head hit an I-beam that extended down from the low ceiling of the parking area.

His head hit that I-beam and the i-beam just RANG.

It was kind of like his skull had thumbed a massive tuning fork.  It was a horrible sound. Actually, that’s probably hyping it up a little.  It sounded like a big melon hitting a stainless steel table.

It was a really bad sound.

I know that if it had been me, it might have been a real vocabulary expander.  It sounded like it must have hurt a great deal.

But I’ll always remember Sam’s father’s response.

He just said, “darn it.”

And that was it.  No yelling or cussing or blaming….just a quiet and well-mannered “darn it”.

“Well mannered”….that’s the description I like the best for his response.  It was a kind and mature response that I’ve used as an example of a “good reaction to an awkward or painful situation” many times.

There are things that our own parents do during our lifetimes that we carry with us.

There are things that we carry that our friends and their families do that we also always remember.

I don’t want to have to see Sam’s Father hit his head to learn my lessons…but his response taught me something good.

It was a good lesson.

The day before yesterday, I got up early to write a couple of blog posts….

and the computer was screwed up.

So the time that I would have used to write, I used to troubleshoot and try to get the computer back up and running.

I didn’t hit my head.  There wasn’t anything painful going on.  It was a minor irritation.  It was a very minor irritation in the big scheme of things.

Even though no one else was up and could see me, I pitched my own quiet version of a desperate hissy fit.

“How could this happen?  I keep my ducks in a row…I plan and persevere.  I’m a good person…why is my computer messed up?!!”

There was probably a lot worse going on inside my head while I was working at getting my precious blog back up and heading out into the world.

Where was my “well-mannered response”?

Even though no one was up to see it, I know that I should be embarrassed about getting upset over something so minor. It wasn’t anything that deserved getting overwrought about…it was just a machine that didn’t act right.

That’s pretty common, really.

I’m glad I have the marker of Sam’s father’s response to refer to.

Now if I can just mature enough to consistently emulate it.


image from here.




About Peter Rorvig

I'm a non-practicing artist, a mailman, a husband, a father...not listed in order of importance. I believe that things can always get better....and that things are usually better than we think.

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