The idea started as a passing thought of Rita’s as we sat crammed shoulder to shoulder in the Murphy’s extremely full eight passenger SUV. We were driving through a small town in Maine when Rita announced, “I hope our house has a clothesline.”
Unsure what to make of her expressed desire, I raised a questioning eyebrow.
“What?” Rita demanded, “I can just see myself frolicking between the linens hanging out to dry. It would be fun.”
I laughed and it quickly became a joke between us. Every time we passed a clothesline in the following week, remarks were made regarding its frolicking quality. On our last day however, the joke ceased being a joke. We were walking along behind Rita’s father and two Spanish exchange students when I casually remarked, “You know Rita, we never did go frolicking.”
Her eyes widened as she turned to me to excitedly exclaim, “We should totally do it when we get home!”
There is no logical explanation for my agreement, but a little while later I was standing with Rita in front of the bathroom mirror.
Makeup was strewn across the top of the sink as we haphazardly caked it on; fully aware of how ridiculous we looked. The ridiculousness of our faces was only rivaled (but just barely) by our choice of dress. From a box in the closet we shared with the Spanish boys, Rita and I had pulled out sheets in patterns from the nineteen seventies. It was these sheets that we wrapped about ourselves toga style over shorts and tank tops. Having completed our frolicking look, we marched out of the house leaving in our wake hysterical laughter from the boys and the blank silent stares of Rita’s parents.
Jumping and spinning around in a backyard wearing a toga and makeup looking as though it was applied by an infant probably sounds like a crazy idea. In fact, I know that it was and I can guarantee that Rita and I will never do it again. We will however, always remember it. And that’s the point isn’t it? Alright, so chances were more than high of looking like a fool; no, I will probably never be able to live down the “Remember when you and Rita…” moment and yes, there is photographic evidence – on multiple cameras. But it was worth it.
I believe in crazy ideas. As human beings, we spend most of our time over thinking our every action and trying to avoid looking the fool. Every once in a while though, we stop thinking and we live in the moment. For a short time we forget to care what other people think of us. We do things that normally, we would never do; we put on togas and dance around the backyard. I believe in crazy ideas that lead to moments we can never forget and the ridiculous moments that become the memories by which we will define our lives.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.