When Jeff and I first met I didn’t know he was, what I lovingly call, time conscious.
It was a few months later when we had plans to meet some friends for dinner that I got my first clue. I caught sight of Jeff in the driveway waiting on me. He paced back and forth behind the car, holding his clenched fists to his side while mumbling to himself.
I flung open the door and ran out to meet him. Right in front of my eyes he transformed into calm, non harried Jeff, a man without a care.
I gave him a quick nod and smile. “I’m ready.” And we walked to the passenger side of the car.
I dipped down into my seat and Jeff shut the door. That’s when I heard him say, “Thank you Lord.”
He plopped into the driver side and I tried to mirror his calm facade. I said, “Would it be better for you if next time we left fifteen minutes earlier?”
Smooth as can be, he said, “Whatever you think honey.”
After awhile the fifteen minute leeway wasn’t enough. One day I spied him standing by the door, keys in hand, and his head hung down between his shoulders.
I grabbed my coat and bag and rushed to him. “You know, maybe we could leave thirty minutes earlier than we scheduled.”
A gush of wind flew from his mouth as the red color faded from his face. “Whatever you think honey.”
Now twenty years later, when we get ready to go somewhere we start planning early in the day. For example, last week, we decided to go to the Time Warp Tea Room, a casual hangout in the old part of town, a five minute motorcycle ride from our house.
I gave Jeff a sideways glance. “What time are we leaving?”
“Five-thirty.” Jeff sounded so sure but I knew better.
“Five-thirty? For real five-thirty?”
“Uh, yeah, uh… five-fifteen.”
I put my hands on my hips and cocked my head to one side. “What time do you want to be there?”
“I’d like to be there at five-thirty.”
“So you want to leave at five?” I should get points for teasing this out of him.
“Yeah, okay. Let’s make it four-forty-five.”
I laughed and threw up my hands. “I’ll be ready at four-thirty.”
“Oh, no hurry. Four-thirty is fine.”
I don’t really mind showing up at places early or in our case, extra early. But I can tell you what happens after our early arrival. We wait on everyone else to get there. And then, we wait on everyone who is running late to get there.
Today's Featured Cartoon - ODDS & ENDS by Doug Sanders
A Guest Editorial by Jeffrey Kaufman
President / Producer / Writer - Big City Comics
All day I’ve wanted to say something about what’s going in Baltimore. I spent too many years as a criminal defense attorney, and about the same amount of time as a writer. People used to ask me what it was like trying cases and representing some of the worse people our society produces. I found that most the people I represented fell within three categories, the stupid, the crappy and the evil.
Most of the thousands of people I represented just made stupid choices, and if g...iven ten seconds to think about it would have chosen differently. Then there are those who commit crimes because they are truly evil which is rare. In my career, I only met two people who fit into that category. While they still haunt me, they are not the reason why I’m glad that I no longer handle criminal cases.
What wore me out were the insanely crappy people out there. They were the ones that whether through DNA or poor parenting were selfish and delusional in ways where logical reasoning does not exist. They blame everyone else for why they are where they are, and not where they think they deserve to be. They live lives full of excuses to explain away their poor choices.
The question here is simple. Are the images we are being shown, actions of desperate protestors, or criminal acts by those just using this person’s death as an excuse? Whether we like it or not, our country was founded on civil unrest that most of us believe was a valid response to being treating poorly by The British. The problem here is that some of what we are seeing doesn’t feel like justifiable discontent. The smiles, the poses, and the stealing remind us of children acting out behind their parents back.
The truth is that people should protest injustice. It is so important that The Founding Fathers made freedom of speech our most important right. If our government through its agents, kills one our citizens, everyone should be on the streets until an answer is provided. What’s really sad is that because of those people that are using this man’s death as an excuse to act poorly, we are being distracted from what this was supposed to be about…A citizen of ours died and we still have no explanation.
To those in Baltimore, I hope you remain safe.