Feeding The Habit

"I will go in this Way, Oh but I will find my own way out." -Dave Matthews

Monday, July 19, 2004

Stones and Arrows

There is a little up arrow in my dashboard that lights up every time I should shift to the next gear. My car thinks it knows how to drive better than I do. My car is an arrogant little prick. I still pat it lovingly and encourage it up the hills every day because it doesn't realize what an arrogant prick it is.


Six years ago and in Guatemala I entered a jewelry store. There they sold the finest jade. I bought a turtle-pendant necklace for my sister that hung from a lovely silver chain. To delight me, they gave a piece of uncut jade with my purchase.

"This has problems many" the jeweler told me in broken English. "It is not good for making jewelry."

I replied back in Spanish to say that was too bad. I assured him the dull, unfit stone would find a home with me. When I returned to the states, I found the small rectangle of jade fit perfectly over the small panel that held the offending arrow in my dash. The little blinking wouldn’t bother me any longer.


For the past six years, whenever I am on a long trip and in fifth gear, knowing the arrow will hold his peace; I remove the stone and rub it between my thumb and forefinger. It's a nervous habit as much as it is a way to pass the time. For the past six years though, it hasn't escaped my attention that the stone is becoming more and more beautiful with every passing drive.