The title which begs to be used is: Blank checks are a girl’s best friend.
However, that would be totally misleading.
(Not that I’ve hesitated misleading you before…big grin…)
I have two stories to tell you this deliciously melting 42 degree (5.5 C) February afternoon. Heavens, we haven’t seen 42 degrees since autumn, I swear it. We’re now experiencing three blessed mid-winter days of slippery slidey icicle-melting delight before the weather turns ugly at week’s end. At least that’s what those blizzard-forecasters are mumbling beneath their radar breath.
Heck, you should have seen us attempting to shovel four feet of snow off our woodpile this weekend! You should have witnessed us buried in snow attempting to load the wood room. It wasn’t pretty.
So, instead, I’ll tell you a funny happening.
As many of you know, I’m a tax collector and sinner. (Ha ha–love using that line.)
I’ve collected property taxes for this township-in-the-north-woods since you wore diapers. I’ve taken checks and money orders and cash for taxes for so many years…well, never mind. Let’s just say over a quarter of a century.
Last week something amazing happened. A fellow mailed me a blank check.
OK, that’s a slight misrepresentation. He actually sent two checks for the appropriate amount. Then he included a blank check–with attached business card–for adding his penalties and interest.
I stared at that blank check, befuddled, for at least two minutes.
Suddenly, dreams of escaping for the tropics surfaced. Where might a snowbound northerner travel with a blank check?
I sighed and called the phone number on the business card.
“I sent you a blank check!” acknowledged the fella on the other end of the line after our introductions.
“I’m headed for Mexico!” I smartly replied, attempting to alert him to what less-than-honest people might do.
He laughed. I laughed. I told him the amount of his penalty and carefully penned it in the empty space.
“Awww, I know your township supervisor and all you guys,” he explained. “I knew it was safe to send the check.”
I raised my eyebrow. Trusting fellow.
OK, he was right. It was safe. I’m not that much of a sinner to embezzle money. In fact, can never figure out why people steal without imagining they’ll be caught by an auditor or boss or bank somewhere along the line.
The blank check is history.
I can’t take my best friend on a trip to Mexico or Nicaragua.
(Blogger is now laughing to herself at this silly segue between two disparate subjects.)
What do best friends have to do with blank checks?
I simply must share that one of my stories about a childhood best friend was published here on this fair Internet this week. It’s called Fear and Reconciliation.
Miranda Beverly Whittemore features a website dedicated to friend stories. She’s recently published a novel called Bittersweet and friendship lies at the center of the book’s theme.
She explains that girlhood friendships can be passionate, secretive, playful, brutal, and more. They are how we discover who we want to be.
FriendStories is a home for these memories.
Laurie Buchanan, over there at Speaking from the Heart, urged me to submit a story, and one fine day recently I typed out an essay.
Will you click your mouse (only once, mind you) and read the story? Please and thank you from your blogger who didn’t cash that blank check and flee to Mexico.
But that’s not all.
You writers, bloggers or friends with a story of your own–please consider submitting your own friend story. Miranda truly wants to share these once or twice weekly. Don’t be shy! Many of you have stories wanting to be hatched, to be shared, to launch from thoughts into paragraphs.
I’m sure Miranda will not be sending you a blank check. I know I shall not. But it might be fun.
Here are your questions. 1) If someone gave you a blank check and it was oh-so-legitimate, what would you do with it? Would you travel? Pay bills? Shop? Do tell. 2) Did you have a childhood best friend? Are you still in touch?