Another Lesson Unlearned

When I was nineteen years old, I got a letter from my high school girlfriend, my first real love. She’d met someone else at college, someone who meant more to her than me. It was over.

The story was a complicated one, and involved a considerable amount of hypocrisy on my part (which my father called me out on). But one of my friends kind of set things in perspective for me.

“The person who is there will always mean more than the one who isn’t.”

She was in Colorado, I was in Florida. What shot did I really have?

It’s been 41 years, so I’m mostly over it. I’m standing alone in a pizzeria; one of the employees walks out from the back to take my order. But then he decides to answer the phone first. Then he takes another call. I could hear the voice of my 19-year old buddy, with a slightly modified message:

“The person who isn’t there will alway mean more than the one who is.”

So what cellphones have done to personal relationships, takeout has now done to customer relationships. People who are actually there have become the least important people we know.

As to my old high school girlfriend, she’s still married to that guy, so she chose wisely. When I came home, I was going to tell my wife about what happened, but she was on the phone. That, and nothing really had happened.

Another hard lesson unlearned.

3 thoughts on “Another Lesson Unlearned

Leave a Reply