Thursday, September 20, 2012

Master of the Universe

Steve was safe because of my magical powers
OK, since it’s just you and me here, I’ll share a secret with you: I have ultimate power.  I can make things happen.  I can also keep things from happening.  How do I do it? Simple: I wear my lucky earrings. I sleep on the left side of the bed. I eat the same yogurt breakfast every day. As long as I stick to these rituals, all will be well. 

Do you want your sports team to win? Do NOT allow me anywhere near the field of play. One glance from me is enough to send the opponent’s score skyrocketing. Do you want your beautiful outdoor wedding to go off without a hitch? Remove me from your guest list or prepare for a deluge.

 On the other hand, make sure I’m concentrating on you, and am clad in my lucky sweater, if you want to ace your SATs. Bring me along, sitting of course in my lucky fifth row center seat, to ensure a brilliant concert performance.  

I first learned of my special powers in first grade. My first day of school, I accidentally boarded the wrong bus home. Dad had brought me on a regular NYC bus in the morning. In the afternoon, as I climbed onto the rather different big orange vehicle, I noticed that there were no advertisements for Seagram’s Whiskey inside, nor was there a charge to ride.  Hmmm. The principal, Sister Agnita, discovered my error, clambered aboard and yanked me out of my seat, chastising me all the way to the curb.  I was terrified of her. When summer came at last, I began to pray, earnestly: “Please God don’t let Sister Agnita come back in September!” I had spoken, and my wish was apparently the Almighty’s command. In July, my Nana was reading the New York Times on the porch at the beach. “Elise, wasn’t your principal named Sister Agnita? I’m reading her obituary!” Wow!!  I had killed her with my thoughts!! 

From then on, I was a force to be reckoned with.  As I grew, I noticed my control over life’s ups and downs increased. If I played the Beatles’ “Rubber Soul” album while I was writing a paper, I was guaranteed an A. “Abbey Road” wouldn’t do at all. The motorists in my life were always protected, as long as I was there upon their departure to say “Drive safely—don’t let me worry about you!” When Steve once left abruptly for work, I actually ran after his car, shouting my magical phrase. 

There are times when I wonder if I really do wield all this influence on destiny. Would the kids have been accepted to college if I had not been the first one at the mailbox? Does my choice of coffee cup change the course of my day?

 Is it possible that I am just a superstitious nut?

Of course not. 

Sunday will be a big day at work. Better wear my lucky kitten-heel shoes. Then I’ll be all set.

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