OUTSIDE OUR APARTMENT THE WIND IS HOWLING. It is a north wind coming across the open sea from the polar regions. It may be late April, but it feels like February. I’m glad I brought along my heavy jacket.
The clouds in the sky, according to my wife, the lovely and cinematically referential, Dawn, resemble the clouds used by space aliens to conceal the Mother Ship from prying human eyes. She’s right.
I’m hoping the wind dies down a bit soon. I have to go take out the trash and I don’t want to be blown away – or beamed aboard an alien spacecraft and subjected to unpleasant tests and probing. The trash can wait.
The sun is peeking through the clouds, but the wind continues to whistle, but a bit softer.
(Short Musical Interlude)
I’m back. I actually got up from my chair and looked out the front window. There was bright sunshine and a swath of blue sky – and it was suddenly quiet. The wind was almost calm.
“Get the trash ready – I’m goin’ out there!” I yelled as I ran for my jacket.
I beat feet across the parking lot, carefully avoiding the small Mazda being driven by someone who looked to be no more than ten. She could barely see over the steering wheel. I quickstepped between the other two buildings and went to the trash area where, with all the grace and finesse of Gene Kelly dancing with Cyd Charisse I lifted the dumpster lid and dropped in the trash. No muss, no fuss, nothing dripping from the bag.
As I started my return trip I looked to the heavens and saw that the blue sky was being obliterated by another suspicious cauliflower of clouds. The wind was beginning to ramp up again. I knew that my window of opportunity was closing like an irritated oyster.
A move into double-time got me to our door with moments to spare. As I locked the door, shrugged off my jacket and ran my fingers through my tousled hair, I knew that I had beaten the odds. I had gone up against our Irish Mother Nature and pulled out a narrow victory from the pinking shears of defeat.
When I came back into the dining room where Dawn was anxiously waiting for word of my return I could see the relief in her eyes.
“You made it! Is everything alright?”
At that moment the sun disappeared from view, the wind began to blow again, but now with a defeated and angry tone. And rain started falling – tears – knowing that one man had taken the dare and came home victorious?
I stood in the window and said to Dawn, “Today was more than just one man overcoming a challenge. Let them know that we did not go gentle into that good dumpster. This is more than just our day. From now on, men and women everywhere will know that from this day forward this day, April 28th, belongs to all of us. That Today is our Trash Day!!”