Shana Tognazzini had a problem. With a capital P, and that rhymes with B, and that stands for Boy.
Shana, like all of us, was devoting nearly all of her waking hours to keeping The Boy at bay, letting the rest of her life lie fallow just to survive. But her four-year-old daughter had a date with the Dread Drummer to practice for her holiday pageant. So what was Shana to do?
Look at that face. What would you do? Are you really gonna tell that face: “Sorry, kid, but you’re on your own and are doomed to humiliate yourself in front of everyone, so please consider it a character-building exercise?”
She’s a mom. She’s a fighter.
So she took one for the tyke. (Which, yes, technically means the girl’s out, too, but the child doesn’t appear to be too broken up about it.)
For that’s what we do in this Thing of Ours. We stick together. We help our kid get ready for her thing. We don’t say anything as the song’s playing in the store because our pal may not have noticed it. So we wait until we’re safe in the parking lot to ask if they did, and if they give an honest “no,” we fill out the reporting form for ourselves and root them on.
I mean, is there anything more noble than understanding the wound is mortal and waving the survivors on with an empassioned, “Go without me”?
If running this Thing of Ours has taught me anything, friends—and 13 years in, wouldn’t you think I’ve learned something?—it’s that we’re all in it together. (OK, not all of us, but that’s why we have the “Hoist with His Own Petard” rule.)
It’s not a new lesson, of course; I’ve talked about it before.
But these days it’s pretty much the classic Moe Tucker–Lou Reed duet. You held up a stagecoach in the rain. And I’m doin’ the same.
For I may technically be able to win without you, and you without me, but it’s not nearly as much fun. So stay together. Watch each other’s backs. And do it for Peter.
Again, if you do take a tumble, please fill out the reporting form (https://bit.ly/LDBCform), and post an LDBC-elfie like one of those in the latest batch, below, by commenting on the Facebook page or by tweeting and tagging @LDBChallenge.
LDBC-Elfies: Defeated but Not Forgotten
A little help, if you can: once again, we’re battling the darkness that is The Boy by trying to shed some light on the situation. So if you’re willing and able to help this year, Americares is who we’re giving to this year.
As I say every year, there’s no obligation. Everybody’s welcome in this Thing of Ours, whether you contribute or not. But if you can, Americares is a great organization.
Got taken in a pub in Chicago. The Boy got me after I ducked into the men’s room. Gangland style. Our waiter was apologetic but too late.
I filled out the form but don’t use Facebook.
Oof. Sorry to hear it, Art. As you say, men’s rooms are historically dangerous places here in the Windy City.
Condolences on your loss.