Aha! momentsWritten by Tom Morrissey | | email@example.com
Witnessing an array of characters walking Toledo’s streets, parking lots or local establishments has morphed into a twisted pastime for me.
I don’t immediately assume someone is crazy; Bluetooth users have given reason to proceed with caution. More than once I have thought someone was engaging me in conversation, almost responded, then stopped myself, mildly embarrassed after seeing the device in their ear.
Recently, I observed someone walking down Secor Road, carrying on an intense conversation, complete with wild body language. I stared rudely, waiting to realize that some device was providing his ears ample reason to respond in such fashion. To my great amusement, that “Aha! moment” never came about.
With the abundance of Bluetooth users and iPod listeners, the “Aha! moment” — when one realizes that there is more to what one is observing — is expected.
I have been blessed with an abundance of “Aha! moments.” My most recent job was found by coincidence through an online ad. I immediately learned I had been blessed with a job with incredible stability, and that “Aha! moment” was combined with the later realization that I was going to miss the great crew I saw every morning before my sleepy, bloodshot eyes were partially cracked.
Beyond employment, I have been blessed with an incredible, stable family — a model I hope to replicate some day. It wasn’t until I was attending college out of state that I realized that my two parents, who were married before their first was born and are still married after 25 years, were quite a rarity. Today, 41 percent of all American children are born to single mothers. Let the saddening divorce rate complicate the remaining 59 percent, and the “Aha! moment” is not only staggering, but humbling.
To add to my “Aha! ” list, when I married three years ago, I had little idea who I was marrying, despite nearly three years of dating. The moment hit me like a boulder in Wile E. Coyote fashion when I realized after three years of marriage exactly what an astounding treasure I had legally locked up.
Her “Aha! moment” might have been one of agony, possibly realized after I launched a reckless campaign a few months into our wedded life. But as I bragged about her to others with renewed perspective, I couldn’t believe this wonderful “Aha! moment” — a moment only God could have been aware of on (and before) our wedding day.
I wonder if my “Aha! moment” has passed regarding the City of Toledo.
My experience in Toledo has been a full quarter-century. Toledo has it all, and everything else can be found an hour away. The spirit that thrives Downtown during summer baseball game days, the thrill at the Walleye games, the electricity that surrounded Crystal Bowersox’s “American Idol” visit and the excitement of Toledo summers cannot be replicated.
Property prices are incredible for buyers. The cost of living is magnificent. The winters might last too long, but the other three seasons in Northwest Ohio were created to be spent outside. The fabulous Metroparks system cannot be beat. The list of why this area is wonderful outweighs the list of negatives, but I still can’t find my “Aha! moment. ”
In Toledo, anything that has a remote chance of being politicized — from dogs to the YMCA — can and will be politicized to death. Elected goofballs have dotted Toledo’s political landscape, distracting and disturbing the population. The barriers to reality are obvious and boisterous.
Unfortunately, Toledo’s distractions are not the ones carrying on imaginary conversations, waving their arms, and creating harmless, amusing spectacles.
Maybe that’s where my moment was lost.
E-mail columnist Tom Morrissey at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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