Friday, February 08, 2008

Momma Said
by Vicki Rogers (my momma)

Stale Mate

Sometimes when you come to the end of a chess game there just isn't any other way to move without putting yourself in jeopardy. You sit staring at the game, wondering how you got into such a position. If you move one way, you lose; if you move another way, you’ll lose. You do nothing. Thus you are involved in a stale mate. You don’t actually lose but you don't actually win either. Life with a comfortable partner can be like the end of every interesting chess game that ends in stale mate.

When you can see how your comfy couch has become the chess board and you and your partner slide from one cushion to the next over and over again for the best position to watch yet another TNT presentation of “Bourne Identity”…

When you can see how your verbal communication about where to eat dinner turns to simple grunts or eventually telepathic strategic meanderings…

When you can see that you can pick this game up in six weeks from now and nothing has changed…That's when you know you have a "STALE MATE".

I remember growing up we had a tin bread box in a corner of the kitchen that was used for just one purpose, storing stale bread throughout the year. This bread would be used to stuff the turkey for Thanksgiving. The ends or heels of a loaf of bread would be put into this box to shrink and shrivel while they dried out and waited for rebirth after being seasoned and crammed into the private cavity of our holiday bird.

Somehow, when I come home to my comfortable partner after a hard days work and I’m greeted by my mate in a pair of his stale-looking, saggy, white, "day old" underwear, it makes me think of those wrinkled pieces of dried up bread. I skipped the dressing this past holiday season. Instead, I sat on the couch and wondered why I kept sitting next to my stale mate.

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