When is it time to give up?
June 8, 2019

sunset on the cruiseOnce upon a time I watched a fascinating conversation unfold between a couple of colleagues. The woman had interrupted the man in the breeziest, most matter-of-fact way to tell him it wasn’t necessary to keep explaining something to her because (1) he’d already explained it, and (2) she’d remembered. At which point the man…kept going.

Strike one. But, hey. Maybe he hadn’t heard her, registered what she’d said, whatever. So she repeated what she’d just said, thinking the man would acknowledge it this time. He did not.

The woman asked what was up. They’d both been talking, after all -- but she was responding to his part of the conversation and he was proceeding as if she wasn’t even in the room.

Now she had his attention!

“It isn’t the law,” he told her, “that I listen.”

To her credit, that was the end of it. With him. But since she knew I’d listened to the whole thing, she waited until we were alone to tell me she knew right away he’d done her a favor. “Which was?” I asked, incredulous.

“I haven’t figured that out yet!” she said. That’s one reason I love her. She knows everything’s a gift, even -- or perhaps especially -- when it isn’t immediately obvious.