Tuesday, April 17, 2007


I like fortune cookies. Well technically I like opening fortune cookies – the cookie itself (with rare occasion) is a twisted dry lump of nearly inedible cardboard. Occasionally, I’ll find one that is really tasty. Not often but occasionally.

But by far the best part about getting a fortune cookie is opening up the cookie to get the fortune inside.

Every time I open one up, especially if I’m eating with friends, I desperately want to hold my fortune up as if I’m reading from it and say: “Help! I’m being held prisoner in a fortune cookie factory.” This is a joke I heard from my Dad when I was young. It has now become so engrained in me that every time I open up a cookie, and I really mean every time, I want to say it. I usually manage to hold it in UNLESS I’m with my kids – then out it comes thus infecting the next generation with the same meme.

I hate when I get a platitude instead of a fortune in my cookie. This happens way to often. “You are a nice guy.” Well whoop-dee-doo. I don’t care. I already know what I am and I definitely don’t want a cookie commenting on me. “You like puppies.” Sheesh – these kinds of ‘fortunes’ are just stupid. Yes people like puppies – people think they are reasonably decent people – so platitudes can often apply to a wide range of people and I’m sure that is why then end up in fortune cookies. But I always feel ripped off when I get one. I want a fortune in my cookie, I want a prediction, not wisdom from the I-Ching or a banal platitude.

If I get a non-fortune in my fortune cookie I will throw it away with the chopsticks and the plate. If I get a fortune though, I’ll keep it around for a while. If it’s a really good fortune it will get stuck up to my mirror where it becomes a little positive affirmation for me every time I see it. Right now I’ve got two fortunes stuck to my mirror.

The first one says: "You will have many friends when you need them". I got this fortune one afternoon about seven months ago when I bought myself a dinner at the Panda Express. Panda Chinese food is comfort food to me – half fast food half Chinese I really enjoy it, and use it sometimes, as a pick me up. It was a message that I needed to hear at the time – it funny because I don’t deserve it but I have terrific friends. They have been a tremendous source of strength to me during this past year which has been rather difficult. I have needed them and they have always been there for me. I can’t get any luckier than that. I hope I can learn from them to be a good friend too.

This fortune is right at the top of my mirror and every time I see it I’m reminded of my friends and feel a surge of happiness just knowing that they are there if I need them.

Oddly enough given my feelings above, the second fortune up on my mirror IS a platitude not a prediction. This one though, had enough truth for me that I kept it. I got this fortune when after visiting a game store prior to playing D&D with friends (and buying new dice which I am clearly unable not to do when visiting the gamer store) we bought Chinese food on the way back to the game. My ‘fortune’ said: "A little madness, a little kindness, makes for happiness".

This one seemed to capture the feelings I have when I am the most happy. I love activities where I can be silly (mad if you will) and let out the comments I think of. It’s not a form of madness it’s rather a form of freedom but I imagine that it looks like madness to an outside observer. I love the times when I can talk and listen and visit with friends to. The best times have been the opportunities to help someone else with something in their lives. The chance to be kind to another really does create positive feelings.

Now it’s like nine in the morning and I have totally made myself want some Lo Mien. That is a peril of blogging that I had never imagined.


Julie said...

Hear Hear! For friends, madness, and kindness all wrapped up into one big happy package. WOOOOOOO!!!!

John O said...

Must ... visit ... China Buffet!

Kelly said...

Madness...is being hit in the forehead with a d12...yes, happiness comes in strange packages...and so do friends.

:D bwahhahahhahha!1

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