Just a Lil’ Scratch..!

There was a ruckus going on downstairs, screaming and yelling with some choice words thrown in for effect. I didn’t bother going to see what was happening; I was busy with the morning papers. “Our neighbour’s really furious!” said my wife coming into the room.
“With us?” I asked hoping I’d not hit her potted plants when I’d driven home late last night.
“No, with the guy who cleans her car!”
“Oh!” I said and continued with my reading. We all were very particular with how our car was cleaned when we got a new car; she had just bought hers.
The phone rang; it was my neighbour. “Bob! He scratched my car!”
“That’s bad!” I said.
“I yelled at him!” she said, “how could he have done this while washing it?”
“Must have been some sediments in the cloth he was wiping with!” I suggested helpfully.
“It’s a new car!” she wept, “I feel so terrible!”
I was quiet for a while empathizing with her and trying to find words of comfort, then surprised myself with what I said, “You won’t anymore!”
“I won’t feel terrible anymore?” she asked incredulously.
“Once it’s scratched, you’ll drive more at ease and won’t get too bothered with vehicles coming close anymore. One scratch helps you accept others! You’ll relax a lot more from now on!”
I put down the phone very happy with pearls of wisdom I’d just scattered around, then suddenly shuddered, “What did I say?” I asked myself. “I had actually told her a blemish on her car would make her accept other such scratches from now on!”
I imagined meeting her next morning outside my house, “Hi Bob just come and have a look at my car!”
“My God!” I cry, “It’s got scratches, dents and bumps all over!”
“But I’m not bothered; after that first scratch it doesn’t bother me anymore!”
I pick up the phone and call her, “Paint the scratch!” I whisper to her.
“How like the car our lives are,” I think, “we try at first to live good lives, till we slip up over something so small, just a tiny scratch on our clean good surfaces. But when such scratch is not rectified, not painted over, we become more and more comfortable with it.
“How did you become like this?” we ask the alcoholics.
“It was a little scratch,” they reply sadly, “We enjoyed that first drink, after that we couldn’t stop!”
And so, with the womanizer, the fraud, the cheat: It was always after the first scratch!
“We need to come back to our senses after the first scratch!” I tell myself. I look out at my neighbour’s car, the scratch is being puttied and getting ready for painting and I smile happily..!





9 thoughts on “Just a Lil’ Scratch..!”

  1. First scratch on the car may act like overcoming an energy barrier such that subsequent scratches do not matter.
    However if someone hurts us and leaves a metaphorical scratch on our heart, we don’t get immune to such hurts in future. We do feel every scratch we get.
    That is the difference between a car a human being.

  2. Furious that’s how I would have felt. Then we get the second and the third and doesn’t really matter anymore. Ha it’s an old lady, we think. But we certainly feel sad looking at her.

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