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1 Timothy 5:13

4 March 2010

Wouldn’t it be nice if I were to come back here after a hiatus to share something goodly? Sadly, that isn’t the case.

Woe is me. Woe, woe, woe — and shame. Heed my failings, and don’t let this happen to you!

I got together with some friends this morning for coffee at our favorite coffeeshop. We hadn’t seen each other for several weeks, thanks to strep, flus, and general busyness. It was great to catch up, laughter is indeed good for the soul.

While we were chatting, it came out that three of us have had separate dealings with a family where the daughter is a sweetheart, the husband is an easygoing chap, but the wife is a quirky, rather religious, woman. We shared incidents. We pronounced judgment. And about 15 minutes before we left, I noticed the husband was sitting at the table beside ours.

** cue my heart dropping to the floor **

I don’t think he was there when we arrived, so I’m hoping that he didn’t hear us (we weren’t speaking loudly, but who knows how loud is loud enough?).

But still. The things we said were all true, but just because something is true, doesn’t mean it ought to be said. My friend D called me twice, stressing about what might have been overheard. I’ve had a few squeals/shouts/bursts of shame throughout the day as I remember some of what was said (that’s a perk of working from home when no one else is around, you can do this and not worry anyone else about your [lack of] sanity).

We didn’t say anything mean, mind you (we aren’t harridans). But the woman is tightly strung, that is a fact. And I just imagine how I would feel if I overheard people talk about the quirks of someone in my family, and I feel shame.

Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.

9 Comments leave one →
  1. 4 March 2010 4:08 pm

    my mother claims that we (her and her children) were in a restaurant, in NYC, after she was divorced, and that the people at the next table were talking about my father/her ex-husband. i suppose it was possible, but it was so friggin’ unlikely. maybe he heard but didn’t know. maybe he didn’t hear. maybe he knows it all anyway, and you were just reinforcement.

  2. 4 March 2010 4:54 pm


    I think everyone has similar incidents in their past. My version entails receiving an e-mail–one telling me I’d won an award, even–and forwarding it to someone else, with my somewhat snarky copyeditor comments at the top. Instead of forwarding, though, I’d actually replied. OH MY DOG I was mortified. I apologized profusely, and the recipient was very gracious, but still… (And that is one big reason why I enabled the “Undo” Google Labs mail app as soon as I learned about it.)

    In my case, I KNEW that my comments were directly revealed to unintended ears; you, at least, have a good chance of escaping unscathed. 🙂

  3. 4 March 2010 9:46 pm

    Oh I how dislike these moments in life. Don’t be too hard on yourself.

  4. cowgirl permalink
    5 March 2010 10:07 am

    You are not the first this has happened to, and you will surely not be the last… so don’t beat yourself up over it

  5. Split Sister permalink
    6 March 2010 8:07 am

    Yikes. This happens to all of us, unfortunately, but it doesn’t make you feel any better. Hopefully, he didn’t hear..if he did, well, let it go. There’s nothing you can do about it now. sorry.

  6. 7 March 2010 10:10 pm

    We all know that feeling – my stomach totally dropped while reading this post because of how you must feel.

  7. 12 March 2010 7:55 am

    Youch. That’s a tough one, to be sure. But I don’t think he knew.

  8. 23 March 2010 3:01 am

    I once had a similar experience, but AT WORK, which made it even more horrible, if possible…!

    Just dropped by to say that I came across a band that I thought you might like, bearing in mind the Celtic Fiddle tracks you very kindly sent me; they are called Spiro, and the album I’ve been listening to with psychotic dedication is Lightbox. Let me know if you fancy it!

  9. Peaceable Imperatrix permalink*
    23 March 2010 11:21 am

    Thanks for all your support, folks. Time has softened the guilt, but it’s a lesson I hope I won’t forget soon!

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