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Day 26: What’s in a name?

Above should be “what’s in a title,” but that’s not near cliché enough.

I was on a delivery. All three valves in my five cylinder Taurus roared with ferocity as I hit 30 mph on Martha.

I felt my phone buzz in my cup holder.

“Turn right, and then you will reach your destination on…” said the navigator lady.

Navigator lady lives in my phone. Just then, she didn’t care that I’d received a message. She never cares. All she cares about is telling me where I need to turn. She wants to tell me several times. Everything else is less important.

I finished the delivery. I got back in my car. I remembered, and checked the message.

Waves of encouragement flowed over me. Amazewife’s words, bathed in light orange, warmed my heart. They made me feel all tingly and fuzzy inside.


Here I was: delivering a delicious round piece of hydrogenated vegetable oil and flour, navigating the thick jungle of Omaha. I felt exhausted. I had been running from the Cheetah called Discovery, the Lion called Fannie Mae. I was laying traps, slowing the beasts, transforming dollars into bamboo spikes and snares.  I needed recognition and uplifting words. 

My wife never fails to deliver.

She said I’m the best bushman in the whole world.

I must have been in a recognition coma. I was staring out the window of my car when I felt my phone buzz again.


Lol, honey. LOL. 

I laugh not because I feel awkward. Nor do I laugh because autocomplete is ridiculous. Nay. I laugh at your attempt to hide your awe. My unity with nature does not escape you. You can try to take that complement back. But I know. You really are smitten with the way I look on the Savannah.

I seem to be making a name for myself in the restaurant. It’s awkward. I say thanks when people complement my performance. Still feels awkward. Plus, I’m starting to notice an element of icky comparison.

“Everybody likes you,” one coworker said.

“You talking to me?” I said. Not in a Scarface voice. My voice is nerdy. Timid. Caucasian.

“Yeah, you are always on top of the dishes!”

I imagined myself standing in the sink.

One of the prep chef’s agreed that I was always getting stuff done. It wasn’t the Warrior. He was off. It was another prep chef.

I chuckled and pushed another few bins of dirty dishes to the back.

Another driver was already stowing a previous batch of clean cooking utensils.

“It seems like there are two types of drivers,” he said, ”those who do their jobs and do dishes when not on runs, and those that just stand up front. I’m glad you’re the first kind… unlike the other driver that’s working tonight.”

Those complements are very awkward. It isn’t even a complement. Not at its root. It’s a comparison. A judgment. It’s a lowering of another’s reputation through contrast. It’s the creation of a superior title to elevate someone above someone else. Ick.

Those ones I ignore for the most part. It’s easy to do. I move at a frantic pace while washing. I get lost in it. The concept still rattles around in my mind, though. What’s in a title? Whether the title is Best Bushman, Best Husband, Good Worker or Fast Driver, I’m just glad I can make a difference.

Time to chase the CHEETAH.




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