Unintentional Deception

The post started with a simple declaration: I think I am in love with someone! What should I do?
Usually, when I post on Facebook, it's about some cause or issue that I am passionate about. And usually, I'm lucky if five people like the post. I've hit the lotto if someone comments. But when I put up that question, which wasn't at all what it seemed to be, I was flooded with comments, suggestions and a couple of jokes. (I really liked the jokes!) I was flabberghasted. I thought most of them would be suspicious that I would post something like that because a) they know that I am not into mushy romantic stuff; b) In the five years I've been on Facebook, I've never posted anything like that before. I might post an article from a psychology website about (cough, cough) romance and relationships, but that's about it. I don't talk about myself that much, and I'm certainly not going to put myself out there on blast if I were in a relationship. But the comments and advice were delightful and numerous, and I intend to refer to them if I ever meet "Mr. Right". They could be useful.

But that's not the reason I posted the aforementioned comment. It was part of one of those annual spoofs on Facebook that are designed to capture peoples' attention so I could tell them about Breast Cancer Awareness, and the need of self exams and early detection techniques, such as 3D imaging. (Actually, one of my friends posted about the imaging.)

You can read the comments by clicking on the link I provided in the first sentence. But I am re-posting what I told my friends about the real purpose of my so called love declaration.

All right, time for me to come clean with this! But first, I need to tell all of you a story about two women who were friends of mine. The first one is Myrtle Stephens, who was not only a dear friend, but an adopted aunt to my children. Myrtle worked in community theater, in addition to being a very talented, Elly award winning actress here in Sacramento. She was also the theater director for Celebration Arts Theater, and my children took acting classes with her and James Wheatley from the time they were very young until they became teenagers. Myrtle and James were generous and patient by producing two of the plays I wrote, too. More than that, Myrtle was a very, very good friend. We always laughed until tears streamed down our faces whenever my sister Tam, my friend Cindy Heavens and way too many other people to name over to our house for an impromptu dinner party, "just 'cause" One party was epic. I pan fried salmon, made homemade macaroni and cheese, and my sister made cornbread, greens and (I think) chocolate chip pound cake. Myrle did her typical thing: ate until she had to undo her pants, laid down on her back in the middle of the living room, and started snoring. My kids came in from a rehearsal at the theater, looked down at her sprawled on the floor and cracked up laughing. Myrtle moved around a bit, muttered "Y'all go to hell!" and resumed snoring. I can't begin to tell you how much I laughed that night, especially since Myrtle very rarely used a single cuss word when she was awake!

Now I have to tell you about my friend Carol. I met her through my sister, and she was one of the thinnest persons i've ever met. One day, we were all sitting and talking in the Pub, one of the eating and drinking places on the Sacramento State University campus, and Carol said to me, "I bet I can eat more than you!" I looked at her sideways. At the time, I probably weighed around 350 pounds. I was avoiding, um, taking a break from 12 step programs for food issues back then. Carol's body looked like the Black woman's version of Olive Oyl, which is the way she described herself. "You have GOT TO BE kidding me!" I told her. Tam said, "Angie, don't do it. I'm warning you!" But, being the competitive Aries that I am, I took her up on the challenge. The eat-off took place at an all you can eat vegan buffet restaurant that was then located in downtown Sacramento. It was Carol's favorite place to "get down" with some food. I was amused by how confident she was about being able to "eat so much more than you can imagine". There was NO WAY this skinny child could eat more than me! Well...I had one plate of food that was loaded down with food, but didn't even come close to that Leaning Tower of Pisa Carol had piled on her plate. She finished that and went back for her second plate while I was still trying to finish the first. By the time I tried to go for my second plate, Carol had finished plate four and was working on her dessert. I couldn't believe it. How did she manage to fit all that food in that rail thin, itty bitty body of hers? I couldn't even finish the second plate, let alone dessert! I had to concede. She beat me. I couldn't handle another bite. Carol grinned at me and said, "Don't you want some dessert?" Then she finished off what was on my plate. Then she got me with the zinger: "That was really good, but in two hours I'll be ready to eat some more!" I sounded like Lurch from the Adams Family: "Uuhhhh!" I had to go home to lay down for a long nap.

Why have I told you these long stories about my two friends? Because I no longer have them in my life. I lost, no, the world lost Myrtle and Carol to breast cancer. And I have one friend who has sucessfully made it through breast cancer treatment and living her life full tilt as she's always done, and another friend who has been very recently diagnosed and has begun treatment. I don't like losing my friends to this disease. I miss them, and I don't want to miss anymore of my friends. The post that I did about being in love with someone was for the purpose of gearing up for Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October:. The National Breast Cancer Foundation/ I apologize for the deception, but it was for a very worthy cause. Like I said, I don't want to lose another friend. If it makes any difference, I did have a special man in my life, but we parted ways amicably last month. I'm not very good at this relationship thing. I'm incredibly self asorbed, and I'm not always, no, rarely aware of when I'm in that state. But if, by some miracle, I ever meet a man who can put up with a stubborn, very opinionated and determined-to-do-her-own-thing woman, I will keep everything you have posted in mind. Maybe I will have better luck next time!

It still baffles me that people would rather comment about "love" instead of what's going on in Ferguson, Missouri, Gaza and Israel, Iraq/Syria with ISIS or ISIL, Russia and Ukraine, or the Ebola virus epidemic in West Africa. But that's me. News and issues that affect people is something that I am passionate about. I know there are other people are just as passionate as I am. A few of them are my Facebook friends. But the vast majority of my friends on that site are kind, virtuous people, mostly Baha'is and Christians, who adore the simple pleasures of life such as laughing at funny animal videos, praying for those who are sick or going through hard times, and posting pictures of family, friends and special occasions. I think there's one of those damned life lessons that I'm supposed to be learning from this.





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