Just Surprise Me

Blooming in the midst of my neighbors immaculate yard was this surprising rose-shroom.

There are them’s that like surprises and them’s that say they don’t.

I don’t know what I’d do without surprises. I love them. In fact, I spend everyday in eager anticipation of being surprised.

And usually I am rewarded. This is partly true because anyone living an examined life is going to be treated to a panoramic vista of wee to huge surprises as the day unfolds –but also, because people as a class all by themselves are  slap full of surprises.

In addition, Mother Nature holds a full hand of bizarre cards–like this, well, fungus thing that I encountered on a recent walk through my neighborhood. No need to travel to the wilds of the Serengeti or to the Amazon rainforest to witness something amazing–here it was, right at the tip-toe of my New Balance–a beefy-lipped mushroom thing the size of a charger that looked, as the ole Irish ditty goes, “Mighty Lak a Rose.”

It was the kind of surprising discovery that makes one long for grade school days, when those minutes of show and tell time allowed us to share the good, the weird, and the surprising news of our individual lives. Relevancy was not required.

Maybe somewhere there is an enlightened company, probably a start up company, that begins the day by allowing its employees to share whatever strikes their fancies. Much of what might be said could be dull as dirt–but I doubt it. I think that most days we’d walk back to our offices with a nugget of gold in our pocket–a detail of someone’s  life that surprised us.

What I like about surprises is that they quicken our senses, and quicken our minds. Surprises make us more creative, and bring us into the exact moment that is now.

This past week, Mr. Wu presented me with a wonderful surprise. It was one of those evenings when I just couldn’t think anymore, and I had no idea what to order–other than for some reason I did crave asparagus.

As I walked from my car,  the air felt muggy and oppressive. The storms from the gulf were coming up river from the gulf, sending strong gusts of wind that were twirling  the tops of the tall pine tress outside the Royal Panda. Inside, Mr. Wu surprised me with a light dish of  vibrantly green asparagus and sweet white scallops dressed with a spicy sauce.

Allowing other people to surprise us is a smart thing to do. Sometimes other people know us better than we know ourselves.

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