Come along for the ride!!

Friday, April 07, 2006


The title refers to me - I never learn do I?

To cut a long story short, the boiler guy said (on Wednesday) he'll be over on Friday evening at 7pm to fix it. "That's great", I think to myself, "a warm house again".

And so, when he hasn't arrived by 7.30pm tonight, I start pacing, looking at my watch, checking my mobile to see if I missed a call or something!

"It makes me so angry", I complain to my wife, "look at the time, what if he doesn't come, he's got 300 quid of ours!".

Then, as usual, my wife (an oasis of calm) says to me, "look, he works for British Gas, he's probably on a job or trying to get here through the traffic, sit down and relax".

What happens? Not 5 minutes pass when there's a knock at the door, in comes the boiler guy full of apologies saying how awful the traffic was through Chelsea and Fulham.

I swallow, shrug my shoulders and offer a pathetic "yeah, traffic, heh heh... what can you do?", all the while hoping that he can't read in my face the fact that I was just thinking how he might be off down the road with our cash!!

It's ridiculous!

The thing is, I'm a very trusting person, I genuinely ALWAYS give people the benefit of the doubt. It has only taken a couple of cowboy tradesmen however, to slowly dismantle that trust over a period of several years.

You see, the overriding issue with me is that I can't bear the thought that someone is taking me for a ride, be it financially, professionally, emotionally, anything. There's no need for it - I don't take the piss out of people. If I say I'll be here at such and such a time, I'll be there. If I absolutely can't get there on time, I'll call and explain that I'm running late, do you want to make other plans etc.

It bothers me that someone is saying one thing to me and sniggering to themselves, chuckling away going "what an idiot, another sucker".


So, because boiler guy was so polite, so apologetic, so appreciative of the cup of tea I made him, I then proceed to rubbish myself, ridiculing the very person that I am trying to protect from OTHERS ridiculing - ME!

But you know the worst thing? The worst thing about the situation this evening is that I haven't been able to just let it go. I've been thinking about what if? What IF our circuit board hadn't really blown? What IF a new one isn't £300, what if it's £100 and he's pocketed the extra cash? PLUS I gave him a score as an extra drink? What if he IS laughing while counting his cash, with my words about contacting him next year when the boiler needs another service, ringing in his ears?

But I know that this will fade, I know that in a couple of days I'll have forgotten this saga, our radiators radiating heat like a soothing tonic for my soul, whispering "forget it, it's not important, isn't it warm, isn't the sofa comfy, look, it's your favourite programme ....." and so on.

Yeah, I'm a buffoon alright.

The best thing about being me though? You want me to tell you what is the absolute best thing about being me? It's that although I constantly lose my way, although I am regularly distracted from my goals and forget my past achievements, my beautiful and wonderful wife gently reminds me of several things. They are;

1. That I am a smashing person.

2. That I am a super Dad, and

3. That she loves me

And THOSE things give unfailing perspective to a buffoon like me as and when I need it - which is often.

I wish that weren't the case, but unfortunately it is.

Thanks love


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