The arrival of yet another phone book in my driveway unnerved me.
I found it so offensive that I disregarded the inky intruder for several days, letting it just lay there, getting bleached by the sun, ignored but not forgotten. I kept imagining it would somehow be swept away with all the other debris that lands in my front yard. But, no. It sat there, taunting me, wrapped in its evil plastic bag, hermetically sealed and completely infuriating me on my own damn property.
“Phone books are outdated and wasteful. And it seems like every week brings another sneaky ink-and-paper trespasser. No one under 50 even uses them anymore!” bellowed one of the voices in my head. I remembered how my 30 yr old son looked at me when I asked where he kept his phone book. “You’re kidding, right?” he smirked.
So I did the unthinkable. I took it to Facebook.
I did a little rant about the evils of unsolicited phone books in my driveway, curious as to what the response might be. Do my fellow citizens join me in my fury over the phone book? Um, not so much. One well-meaning friend, in defense of the unwanted tree-killing-advertising handbook, reminded me about the valuable coupons in the back. To which I replied, “You’re kidding, right?”
The odious epic paperback has been relegated to the trash bin in my alley where it will get recycled. Unopened. Unused. Virginal.
In the three days it took for the phone book to hit my driveway to its eventual landing in my garbage can, there was some deep debate going on in my head. Even as I felt the heat of righteous indignation rising, I also heard the cool voice of reason whispering, “Really? A phone book on the driveway? That’s all it takes to send you into orbit? Well, you might want to take a look at that, dearie.”
I began to see the phone book as guru. Ah, yes! My guru had shown me just how easily I can be agitated. It’s a phone book, for goddess sake, and yet, it can also be catalyst for self-study……just like anything else. So the phone book becomes my teacher – without saying a word.
After contemplating the brilliance and wisdom (and subtlety) of my new teacher, I did a walking meditation to my alley where I opened the lid to my trashcan, looked into the dark where my guru lay, and whispered, “You’re kidding, right?”
I can hardly wait for the next phone book to hit the drive…..