Waiting & wondering
10:38 a.m. on April 04, 2005

It is weird to see my brother’s name splashed all over the news 24 hours a day. His name is John Paul and he always says he is John Paul the first. When I was 8 years old and he thirteen, he was none too thrilled when that first pope picked his name, but then that pope died pretty much right away. Then we waited with baited breath to see what name the next pope was going to choose. When he decided to be John Paul II, my parents and grandparents were so pleased, but my brother was furious. He said it was no fun to be a kid in parochial school with the same name as the Pope. Kids called him “your holiness” and the “Pontiff”. In college, my brother started having people call him JP, but I could never get used to that. Anyway, maybe my brother’s tortured existence will take a new turn, but for now we must wait and see what name the new pope will choose.


Should I get a cell phone? I am one of the last souls on earth who does not yet have one; I have fought it for so long. The first time I went to Vancouver BC in 1996, I was horrified to see just about everyone with a cell phone, talking on it at restaurants while their lunch companions sat silently. Then I started to notice them everywhere: people in coffee shops, in their cars, walking down the street, all talking on a cell phone. The most annoying was the people on the bus who insisted on sharing their conversation with everyone by making calls through the entire commute, always starting every conversation with: “Dude, I am on the bus”.

9/11 made me loath cell phones less when I would hear the stories of people able to speak to loved-ones for the last time with the aid of this device.

Now that I have a long commute in my car everyday, I can see a need for myself to have some contact to the outside world. Once I got a flat on the expressway and was just stuck there for almost an hour waiting for help to spot me. I have AAA, but how will I call them for help? Pay phones are near non-existent these days. Should I hold out for as long as I can, or should I finally jump on that bandwagon?






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