Skip to main content

Lost and Found: A play in two acts

The location: automatic carwash at the gas bar
The actors: Matte, 2 black gloves, gas bar attendant
The setting: dirty CRV, cold winter day, line-up of 5 cars for the carwash

Act One: Friday

Scene 1: Matte gets in the line to wash the CRV because it is filthy from winter sludge. It will be a 20 minute wait, so she takes off her gloves, pulls out her iphone, and amuses herself. Her turn finally comes, the door to the carwash opens, and she slowly drives forward. She is careful to keep one eye on the ramp the left tire must hit and the other on the lit-up direction board in front of her that will tell her when to stop. She keeps driving...past the washing mechanism and halfway to the exit and still the direction board says GO. What? Something is wrong! She drives forward and back and forward and back and tries to make the direction board say STOP, but everything has shut down. Argh! What to do!

Scene 2: Matte sets her iphone down, gets out of the car, runs out the open garage door at the end of the carwash and into the attached gas station. She tells the guy that nothing is working. A technician comes in and gestures that she is parked in the wrong place! His expression is one of: silly blonde woman! He says to get another ticket and get in line again. Sigh. Matte drives out and obtains another ticket.

Scene 3: Matte sees the line-up of cars is even longer now and decides to try another day. At this point she realizes that she has no gloves on. She looks, but they are not in her pockets, nor in the car. Matte thinks they probably fell out of her lap when she jumped out of the car in the carwash. The carwash is in use and there is no way to get back inside. Matte goes home, car still dirty, no gloves, not happy. Makes popcorn.

Act Two: Saturday

Scene 1: Matte decides to try the carwash again. There is no line-up! She drives in slowly. At first, the carwash does the same thing, but after a bit of waiting, the carwash finally sees her car, gives proper directions, and the carwash starts. After it is finished, Matte opens the car door and glances out to see if she can see her gloves. Yes! There is one on the floor. Matte gets out and picks it up. It is soaking wet and dripping muddy, sandy filth. The timer is running on the carwash, so she hurriedly gets back in her car and drives out.

Scene 2: Matte decides that one glove is no use, so she goes to talk to the gas station attendant. The gas station is not busy, so he says, "Follow me," and they run to the back of the store, through a locked storage room, and into the car wash. Matte sees nothing at first. The gas guy is asking, "Do you see anything?" He has to get back to his counter. Matte runs up to the tire ramp and looks underneath it. There is the second glove! She yells triumphantly and grabs the dirty glove.

Scene 3: Matte tosses the gloves in the washing machine and half an hour later, they are smelling great and look no worse for wear. Matte is very happy. More popcorn. The gloves are happy, too, because they get to live with Matte again and keep her hands warm instead of decomposing slowly under the wheels of car after car after car.

Epilogue: The gloves: $5. The carwash: $14. The experience of rescuing something that others would have given up on: priceless.

This is a photo of my gloves after they were washed! Sparkling clean!

Comments

Anonymous said…
Great stuff Matte. A really nice read.
Calogero

Popular posts from this blog

the songs we sing

NOTE: I am going to make some pretty strong statements below, but understand that it is my way of taking an honest, hard look at my own worship experience and practice. My desire is not to be overly critical, but to open up dialogue by questioning things I have assumed were totally fine and appropriate. In other words, I am preaching to myself. Feel free to listen in.

---------------------

When I am in a church meeting during the singing time, I sometimes find myself silent, unable to get the words past my lips. At times I just need a moment of stillness, time to listen, but other times, the words make me pause because I don't know that I can sing them honestly or with integrity. This is a good thing. We should never mindlessly or heartlessly sing songs just because everyone else is. We should care deeply about what we say in our sung, communal worship.

At their best, songs sung by the gathered body of Christ call to life what is already in us: the hope, the truth, the longing, t…

the movement of humility

We live in a context of stratification where much of society is ordered into separate layers or castes. We are identified as upper class, middle class, or lower class. Our language reflects this up/down (superior/inferior) paradigm. We want to be at the top of the heap, climb the ladder of success, break through the glass ceiling, be king of the hill. This same kind of thinking seeps into our theology. When we talk about humility, we think mostly think in terms of lowering ourselves, willfully participating in downward mobility. This type of up/down language is certainly present in biblical texts (James 4:10 is one example), but I believe that the kind of humility we see in Jesus requires that we step outside of a strictly up/down paradigm. Instead of viewing humility as getting down low or stepping down a notch on the ladder of society, perhaps it is more helpful to think in terms of proximity and movement.

Jesuit theologian, James Keenan, notes that virtues and vices are not really…

vertical theology

Much of the thinking and writing I have been doing for the past year or so, especially in academic settings, has to do with how hierarchy is embedded in our theology and ways of structuring communities. To me, that's not a g