Life. Crazy wonderful funny sad life. I watched the City Council meeting last night with my best friend. We had some wine and snacks and watched as person after person came to the microphone and voiced his or her thoughts to the Council. I admire them all: the Council for their dedication to a task that must sometimes be mind numbing and the citizens who surely must brave eye rolling or obvious shifts in posture when their words are at odds with their audience's pleasure.

I was moved by the words directed to the horrible shootings in Aurora, Colorado and pleased that there was no posturing, no policy, no position proposed other than a request for silence. When the Pledge of Allegiance came so soon after,I was momentarily startled because in my head what should come next would be The Lord's Prayer, but even absent that I heard myself whisper "Amen" after "…and liberty and justice for all."

The mention of the passing of Council Member Ernie Ewin's mom and of other people who had recently "gotten their wings," made me glance over at my friend. His mom Betty died two weeks ago. Not an easy time ever, losing a parent. Or losing anyone for that matter.

Later in the evening, long after the lights were turned off in the City Hall Council chambers, we watched a bit of America's Got Talent. One fellow who is amazingly talented in his musical skills was so taken by the glowing reviews of his performance that his chin quivered. He fought back tears, because standing on the stage of America's God Talent while being praised by Howard Stern probably is not the most comfortable place to break down and cry with joy. His chin made me think about sorrow or joy and how just about everyone's chin quivers when they are fighting back tears. Like little kids whose mouths turn so decidedly downward as they try and talk while being brave about something or other, a bad dream or a skinned knee. We've all been there. We're all pretty darn connected, we humans. Tears of joy, tears of sorrow: all salty.

Of course we have our PBID issues and our parking meter monies and our elections to fight over and brood about. But really, really, I wish we could just keep a better balance in our community relationships of being grateful for the presence of neighbors and friends, customers and cops, firefighters and friends. I know we have other people's pensions to ponder, and rising water rates and pesky sewer bills to debate, but really, really, I wish sometimes we could all just pull up chairs and sit facing each other, or sit beside one another and put our arms around someone's shoulder and say I am glad you are alive.

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Comment by Tiffany Shepherd on July 26, 2012 at 5:45am

Beautifully said, Chris.  Thank you!

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