This I Believe

Kathleen - Flint, Michigan
Entered on June 5, 2006
Age Group: 30 - 50
Themes: question

As I wait in traffic, having pulled to the left lane like the sign told me to do, watching car after SUV fly around me just to pile into the left lane ahead of me, I come to terms with my faith. When do I get to be first in line? I follow the rules, don’t cheat, get in the correct lane as directed, do what’s right because I know it is right. When will it be noticed? Now I know I’m supposed to be happy knowing that I do what’s right because at the end of the day it will make me sleep better. Sometimes a pat on the back would be nice. Where is the humanity?

And in comes my pencil sharpener.

Mind you, it looks like every other teacher’s pencil sharpener in school. But mine is oh so special. My students believe it to be broken. Ask them. They’ll tell you it is broken. But also ask them about the karma. I have tried to teach them the lesson of karma. You see, the pencil sharpener ALWAYS works for me. At first, I thought my students were not telling the truth. Pencil sharpener? Broken? Can’t be, I just used it. And so I try it again, with their pencil this time. Low and behold, it still works. So then I thought, is this a ruse for the students to get me to sharpen their pencils for them. But no, I watched; the sharpener will not work for some of them. And in walks karma. I noticed that when I use the sharpener, I do not look at it and I think happy thoughts. Why, you might ask, happy thoughts for sharpening a pencil? Well, I ask you, “Why not?” The next time a student had a hard time sharpening his pencil; I did not sharpen his pencil for him, but taught him how to be in symbiosis with the sharpener. If you have bad karma, it will not work. Do not look at it and think happy thoughts. One must feel the pencil being sharpened, not see it. I swear; it works. Ask the students.

I do not want my pencil sharpener fixed; it is not broken. Faith is restored. I have found humanity in my pencil sharpener.