money health weekly


You May Need a Different Lens


"While we may not be able to control all that happens to us, we can control what happens inside of us."

-Benjamin Franklin


I'm on the bus heading home. I just left a happy hour with a good friend of mine. We had not seen each other in a while so we were there longer than we thought. We could have stayed longer, too, if we didn't both have to get home.

When buses pick you up downtown they make you get on as quickly as possible. And since paying eats up too much time, you pay when you get off. It's an express bus, meaning that it only travels from downtown to a station near my house. Everyone gets off at that station. Having to sit in the back and wait for everyone to pay can easily add five minutes to my commute; ugh...who wants that? I am lucky, though; I get a seat right up front - the first one off the bus. It's a good thing, too, because I'm hungry and my wife has dinner ready!

The buses are nice. They have comfortable seats. They're dark. They are quiet. They make it very easy to fall asleep. I fall asleep.

The bus stops. Uh oh! We're at the station, I'm in seat one, and I'm not prepared. I have to gather my stuff, get my payment ready, and get off the bus; there are dozens of people waiting for me. My payment card is in my wallet and the electronic reader can read my card through the wallet. So luckily all I have to do is take my wallet out and touch it to the reader as I leave.

In my hurried state, I grab my wallet out of my pocket and try to touch it to the reader as I'm throwing my computer bag over my shoulder and walking down the stairs. The wallet slips out of my hands. In a desperate attempt to catch it I lose my balance. I fall down all four steps and bounce on the cement.

Now I'm embarrassed, I don't know where my wallet is, and as I get up to look for it I see a bus full of people staring at me. I find my wallet resting on the guardrail, and as I try to walk away I realize something's not right; I can't walk. I didn't realize it hurt when I was embarrassed looking for my wallet, but now I can feel it. My ankle is the size of a softball. When I tried to catch myself on a lower stair my foot didn't land fully on the stair; it partially landed on the stair and the momentum of the fall twisted and broke my ankle.

This sucks! Now, since I can't walk normally, I have to pretend to make a phone call while every single other person on the bus - whom I held up - walks by and looks at me with their judging eyes. I hobble back to my car after they've all left. I have to spend the evening in the ER. I have to wear a boot for months. And I never did get that dinner! The universe hates me!

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