Monday, January 4, 2010

Guest Blog - The Time I Faced Cathlin: A Lesson for the Ages


Today's post comes graciously from Ryan Carmichael, who has me blushing still after reading it. Might be the nicest thing anyone's said about me, but maybe that's because I give off such a tough vibe.
A stiff and steady wind blew through my East Village haunts when news spread of Cathlin’s pending move to El Pueblo de la Manzana Grande. The entire town broke out into a hurried frenzy of hearsay, ruckus, and general shenanigans unseen since the Great Blackout of ’77. Wolves howled, squirrels took cover, subway rats scurried, and the Central Park pigeons alighted all at once, never to return again. The island was bracing itself for a happening of titanic magnitude, and needed a hero to meet the great Midwestern force head on.
My previous meetings with Cathlin were tame enough. As a young and shy lad of University age, I’d often find myself sitting in her vicinity and struggling illogically to think of something interesting to say, usually only managing something along the lines of, “Ketchup’s pretty darn good, huh.” This being said in a very noticeable stutter, making the moment even more embarrassing. It was then that I fully realized the sheer power that Cathlin held. When it came time for an individual to step up to shepherd Cathlin’s momentous New York City arrival I knew it had to be me. Any other person would founder miserably before her as I once had.
Preparing for her arrival wasn’t easy. I arranged for myself an extensive training regiment consisting of a variety of exercises meant to fortify myself mentally against her incredible power. If Cathlin was bringing a fight to the city which I called home I wouldn’t go down without one. After a couple of months of preparation and study, I was ready to meet Cathlin head on. A jaded citizen of the city with nothing to lose, I was the city’s only hope. The Day of Reckoning would soon be upon us.
The sky was abnormally sunny that day. The weather remarkably mild. The winds spoke nothing foreboding, yet the townspeople all walked with a gentle sense of trepidation as if they were seeking to avoid all consideration of what was set to happen. The sheriff tried his best to rally a posse, but everybody knew what was at stake and nobody answered the call. Eventually the sheriff relinquished his badge and gun himself, quitting while he was for all intents and purposes ahead. It was all up to me. The time had come.
The time that I faced Cathlin went down just as most would have expected it to. She swept into town as was expected and took out anybody who dared to stand in her path with her indelible charm and sweetness and an optimism unable to be contained. Would I go down in a similar fashion?
Undoubtedly so. I was no match for her. It was over before it started. I wise man once said that if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em and that’s exactly what I did. As a result, Cathlin’s infectiously optimistic way of looking at life and existence in this crazy metropolis city has captured my heart and transformed my own experience. I now count her as my best friend here, for if she weren’t here, I’d still be that jaded New Yorker. Cathlin brought light to El Pueblo de la Manzana Grande on that day, and the light has yet to extinguish.
As a guest blogger, here’s my lesson to those who read her lessons: Heed her lessons. She knows what she’s talking about. And, she’s ridiculously awesome!
Signing off for the first time,
Ryan

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