Only the Bell to Tell on Me

I’ve been seeing a counselor for a year and a half-ish. I’ve talked to her about my childhood and my adulthood, and I’ve been heartened by what she’s shown to me. My habits, my thoughts, my beliefs about myself all relate in some way to experiences—both positive and negative. One of the best pieces of advice she’s given me is: Childhood is a time when you have no power over what happens to you, and that is scary. Unfortunately, you come into adulthood “programmed” with the same fears you had as a child. But as an adult, you don’t have any reason to fear what you feared as a child. You are in control now. You get to make your own decisions.

This idea reminds me of what Paul tells the Galatians about how the Old Law of Judaism was an elementary authority in the life of the world that prepared the world for Christ’s New Covenant. He gives them an analogy of how the Old Law was like a child that will one day inherit his father’s wealth. “I mean that the heir, as long as he is a child, is no different from a slave, though he is the owner of everything, but he is under guardians and managers until the date set by his father” (Galatians 4:1-2ESV). Regardless of social status, all children are placed under a person, or persons, in authority. Which means a child’s development is closely linked to the emotional development and maturity of their primary instructors, be it parents, teachers, ministers, etc. As a parent, I can vouch for the fact that I have messed up my kids in ways I don’t perceive just because I’m flawed and deal with my own emotional hang-ups. No adult has a perfectly developed emotional maturity.

Yet, with my counselor’s help, I’ve been pinpointing behaviors that the child in me is still expressing. This has given me a chance to step back and take note when I’m feeling fear—fear that has no cause, fear that is a relic of the past. Because of this, I’ve been experiencing some freeing moments and building some new emotional habits. My kids are learning that Mom’s working on herself, and that working on yourself and changing your mistakes and habits is part of growing up. That’s right, kids; adults grow up too.

Yesterday, I walked into the waiting room, as usual. I rang the bell for Dr. L’s office (she’s my counselor) and plunked down on a chair. I thought about my visit with good feelings, instead of the sense of dread I’d had before that I’d find something ugly in me I didn’t want to find. Or maybe I wouldn’t be able to communicate exactly what was wrong, and it would be a wasted visit. It isn’t ever wasted, though. As long as I’m talking—and I can talk—it’s going to work out. Maybe not this session, but it will work out. Making progress that I can see and act on gives me this sense of gratitude and affection for my counselor that I never expected to feel. (Truly, I was a clam at first. I wanted to know her family and educational background and her beliefs before I ever wanted to entrust her with me.) So, I like her. I’m not afraid to be myself around her.

All that changed when someone entered the waiting room and also rang the bell for Dr. L. He sat opposite me, and I scrutinized him. (Clandestinely, of course.) Was he running an errand for the doctor? He didn’t have anything in his hands but a phone. Maybe… A stream of cold ice shot through my chest. I looked at my phone calendar, which conformed that I did not have an appointment with Dr. L. I’d moved my appointment out to be sure I was fully recovered from my surgery. (Yay, I’m recovered!)

I jumped out of my seat like the building was burning. I slipped out the door only to realize I’d left my bottle of water in the waiting room. I opened the office door again, contemplated grabbing my water, and decided I couldn’t risk it. Her bell had been rung twice; she’d be in the waiting room any minute, thinking someone was impatient to see her. She’d see me there, and she’d know I’d made a mistake. And then it would be awkward. I pulled the door closed and raced for the elevator.

She’ll never know.
She’ll never know.

Inside the elevator, I stared at the display, willing the lift to move faster. I walked the sidewalk, crossed the street to the parking garage, and pretended. The whole time I pretended I’d only been there to drop something off. Because I was not supposed to be there! When I got in the car, I breathed a sigh of relief and laughed at myself. I’d formed a new habit alright. I was used to visiting Dr. L! As much as I like her and as comfortable as I feel telling her my insecurities, she is not going to know I accidentally came to a nonexistent appointment! The only evidence? That second ring of the bell.

Seven Texter Types

I’ve noticed a pattern with my friends’ texts. Maybe you’ve noticed these little texting habits, too. Here are seven types of texters:

Wanda the Winker 😉 My friend Wanda winks all the time. She winks in FB comments and blog comments. She winks in text conversations with me just as often. Winks are her thing, but she doesn’t wink when we’re face to face. Basically, Wanda has found a humorous and affectionate way to say, “I have it under control.” Folks who like to use winks often like to be seen as confident, got-it-together people. Text winkers need to surround themselves with people who rely on them and confide in them.

If you have a winker friend, there are some great ways to feed their need. First, let them know how much their efforts mean to you. Let them know what they do for you doesn’t go unnoticed. Praise their skills and assistance—appreciate them in the context of what they do. Second, give them opportunities to be there for you. If you find it hard to lean on others, you don’t have to step out of your comfort zone with Wanda. She will be just as happy to give you emotional support as she would be to get all up in your business.

Warning: Winkers can be pushy and try to advise you on things you don’t want to be advised on; but if you give them good boundaries, they will generally appreciate you for giving them guidelines they can clearly work within to strength your relationship.

Exclamatory Lori White Exclamation Mark on Facebook 3.1 Exclamation marks after every sentence? Wow! Fun! Folks who like to use exclamation marks like to be seen as upbeat and positive. They prefer to keep their problems to themselves, keeping folks at arms distance when they are struggling. Loris exude lots of joy and good vibes. That’s her specialty, so let her work her magic.

If you are good friends with a Lori texter, you will know when she’s faking her excitement and having a hard time. The best way you can help her out is not to let on. Lori texters like to work through the hard times with very few questions. Don’t prod them about their problems; they’ll confide when they’re ready. (And it will probably not be through texts.) So, be the patient friend who checks in without pressuring her to confide. Keep it on the surface; send funny memes to let her know you’re thinking of her while she’s working through things.

Warning – A Lori texter is easy to lose when the hard times come for her. She will push you away, and, later, be upset with you for not being there for her.

Too-Busy Bella 🤪 This type of texter is best explained by the character Patricia Heaton plays on Moms’ Night Out, when she tries to send instructions to her daughter and ends up telling her to eat some “Chicken Poodle Poop.” Autocorrect is not Bella’s friend, and she tends to write a bunch of these nonsense texts. It’s not because she’s technologically challenged; rather, she’s in a hurry and doesn’t find it worth her time to review the message before she sends it. Bellas love to be busy and look busy and breathe busy. They might not know how to tell you what they need by text, but they’re not shy. They’ll crank out a few more nonsense phrases so you can use them as a cipher to solve the mystery of your Bella’s situation.

Bellas like helpers. If you want a little crazy in your life, and don’t mind dropping everything for a Bella, these friends can be fun and spontaneous. They tend to leap from idea to idea, which doesn’t make them the best conversationalists. While you may never feel a close rapport with Bella texters, the nice thing about them is hard feelings will often dissipate quickly. Most Bella texters don’t have time for grudges. Texting with them will be brief and probably humorous. They try to be supportive and tend to pick up where they left off in relationships.

Warning: Your Bella’s “getter done” mentality can lead you into filling in her blanks and completing her half-started jobs. Don’t let this texter rope you into a fulltime position of working for her. She runs many businesses, and you might find it hard to live your life and run her errands.

Smiley, Heart, Heart Hannah 😍 Hannah texters use a ton of emoticons in their texts. Most of these texters just like the variety, but some of them really find it difficult to say all the things they want to say. So, you’ll get an animated sticker instead!

The best way to communicate with a Hannah texter is to send her love, lots of love. Respond with emojis, and she will understand you just fine.

Warning: If a Smiley, Heart, Heart Hannah is upset with you, her emojis will show it. She will send little faces at intervals—some sad, some funny—after you’ve left off texting for a while. She’s letting you know she’s still feeling her sad feelings, and she doesn’t like that at all.

Vampire Violet Syringe on Mozilla Firefox OS 2.5 Unless this texter is young, she isn’t much fun. Violets will text you with questions like, “What are you doing?” Or they might not try at all and just type, “Hey.” Adults who send these texts are expecting you to carry the conversation; and, chances are, you are not dealing with an emotionally mature individual. These texters need a source—a source of amusement, mainly. When they chose you as a source, you need to know what your text response does to them. Every time you respond, dopamine shoots through Vampire Violet’s system. She gets a little high from the attention. It has nothing to do with what you text back, it has to do with her need to feel better about herself. Violet texters are not usually aware of what’s going on. From their point of view, they are keeping in touch with their friends.

For Violets who are not the unhealthy, needy sort—think friends with mental disabilities and kids—responding to their texts can bring a ton of good feeling. Just be sure not to enable your friend when her texts are coming in All. The. Time. Instead of texting, send her a card. That way you are showing her you care without feeding her addiction.

Warning: Vampire Violets feed insatiably on crises. They will create one if they think it will benefit their need.

Last-word Lucy Thumbs Up on Apple iOS 12.2 Don’t you love that texter who cannot leave that goodbye text alone? She must add another heart or respond with one last thumbs-up. Last-word Lucy is not trying to be controlling. Lucys are highly sensitive friends who take their job of communicating very seriously. Last-word Lucy thrives on knowing she “gets” you, and her goal is to show you that you’re worth her time. Your friendship means so much to this texter, and she wants to be sure to show you by approving every text, carefully and conscientiously. Lucy texters want to be seen as the givers, and they enjoy the feeling of knowing they’ve given all they can give. (This is a dreadful match with a Vampire Violet because there is no end to the giving, and it ruins Last-word Lucy’s perception of herself.) Lucys will expend great amounts of energy on the soul who won’t squander or belittle their talent to care.

The best thing you can do for these texting friends is keep connected. Sprinkle them with honest, affirming thoughts you are thinking about them throughout the week and your friendship will bloom and thrive. The hardest thing for a Lucy is when there’s a conversation dry spell. They can need a spill-your-guts fest to know they are caring about you properly after a dry spell occurs.

Warning: Last-word Lucys can feel neglected easily and will get offended without telling you. If she complains about always having to initiate the conversation, she’s telling you she needs you to give more than you are giving. It’s up to you to decide how much you are willing to give.

And last, there is

Novel Nelly Scroll on Mozilla Firefox OS 2.5We all have that friend who can’t text without giving you a lengthy explanation. If you don’t have a Nelly in your life, we need to be texting buddies because I’m a Nelly texter. Nelly texters need to be understood and feel listened to. Their long-winded spiels are not meant to exasperate you; this is how they say, “I’ve thought about this, and here is what I’ve concluded.” Novel Nellys like to be seen as informative and helpful.

The best thing you can do for a Novel Nelly is make it clear you understand by repeating her thoughts in your own words. Assure her by letting her know you appreciate her thoughtfulness and research. Nellys tend to apologize for their novels, so tell her when you thought the essay actually benefited you.

Warning: Nelly texters are extremely analytical and critical. They tend to read things into others’ texts that probably aren’t there at all. (They might even come up with a whole blog post about the way their friends text.)

So, now you have seven texting sorts you’ve probably met in your e-communication travels. Leave a line if you’ve thought of another!

MSG and Me

At fourteen, I learned I was allergic to MSG.

At fourteen, I developed a habit of making a package of ramen noodle soup after school. This continued through the summer, at which time a few red bumps sprung up along the upper back of one of my arms. Then the other arm developed bumps, and they multiplied. I would have become more alarmed if the bumps hadn’t slowly flattened and spread into red patches. I thought that meant the reaction was going away, but while it “healed,” it itched like mad. I took allergy medicine; it helped the itching, but the itching always returned. I tried various creams and soaks. Nothing seemed to make it go away. That summer I participated in a 2-hour test—a public test with one break—that required sitting still at a table in front of an audience, being read questions, and holding up the correct answer behind me to be graded. I was miserable.

What I originally assumed was chigger bites from being outside in the humid Florida woods quickly became obvious when the raised spots began developing on my stomach. It took some time to come up with the culprit: MSG. It was in the noodle seasoning packet I was eating in my soup every day, and it was in a variety of other foods and snacks I was getting at home and out and about.

The crazy thing is, when I learned I was sensitive to MSG, I did not want to give up my soup. I did not have an easy time of it. I craved Funyuns and Cheetos and Chicken-on-a-stick, even though I’d only eaten those occasionally. It was like my body was so addicted to the additive that the misery, the discomfort of constantly itching, didn’t matter. So, I cheated. I snuck foods here and there, only to discover that removing the MSG and returning to it gave me an immediate reaction. My throat began to swell, my ears swelled, my mouth swelled. My body erupted in hives. My stomach hurt and churned. I would be up all night, the toilet my companion. It was awful. And it was scary because there were times my throat would get so small and painful that it was all I could do to rattle in a breath, as I drooled, paralyzed because I couldn’t swallow. You might be thinking, “This girl needed an epi-pen!” I didn’t know anything about them, unfortunately, until my kids had their own allergic reactions to things. So, I just dealt with it.

Over the years, I’ve had quite a time trying to avoid MSG. But I would know when I’d eaten it. My stomach would burn and lurch; I’d have embarrassing episodes of scrambling for a bathroom—which led to anxiety about eating out, and that led to stressing in social situations that involved food. (People don’t understand why I get fixated on food choices. It’s a coping scar, I guess.)

After many years of coming up with alternatives for MSG-laden dishes, I can tolerate a small amount of “yeast extract” or “soy protein isolate,” or other pseudonyms that MSG likes to hide behind. I can taste it in my food now, so I can stop eating and drink a bunch of water before I develop the overwhelming symptoms.

Now that we know MSG is horrible for our bodies, I feel like the extreme reactions I experienced were actually very helpful in preparing me for a world of foods doused in MSG. It means what I cook is a reprieve from the detrimental effects of the fare at typical restaurants or at events. My kitchen can be the zone for healing the body, rather than inviting more destructive elements that create havoc on my family’s developing systems. At least, I hope that’s the case.

If you prefer not to eat MSG, you can make it much easier on your palate if you create tasty spice blends that take the place of the store-bought varieties. Here are a couple of my go-tos.

Magic Blend – A simple blend that works with about any meal. It’s my base substitute for meat seasoning powder, and it seasons roasted veggies sublimely. This 4-ingredient blend also flavors foods cooking on the stove… green beans, mushrooms, and broths.

In a recycled glass spice bottle, I measure out:

1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon onion powder
½ tablespoon freshly ground pepper
½ tablespoon sea salt

Crazy easy, right? You can add more or less salt & pepper, and you can sprinkle in spices that compliment specific foods. For example, I add smoked paprika to oven-roasted chicken or roasted asparagus spears, or I add ground turmeric for oven-roasted cauliflower. Even when I’ve already put in onions and garlic, I’ll sprinkle Magic Blend on to give the dish even more flavor. Yummy!

bowl-of-taco-soupMy second go-to spice blend was developed due to my love for all foods Mexican. Almost every Mexican-inspired recipe calls for taco seasoning mix, which has MSG. So, here’s my take:

Rilla’s Taco Seasoning Blend

2 tablespoons garlic powder
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons onion powder
1 ½ tablespoons sea salt
1 ½ tablespoons ground pepper
1 ½ tablespoons paprika (not smoked)
1 ½ tablespoons cumin
2 tsp cayenne pepper

I use 2-3 tablespoons of this with a 6 oz can of tomato sauce for taco meat. I use 3-4 tablespoons for taco soup. This is also a splendid dry rub for grilled chicken pieces.

I have an Italian spice blend, too, but that one’s pretty standard.

Having these on hand makes our food tasty and healthy. I found it easy to keep up with by jotting down the ingredients on a label and sticking it on the bottle. That way, the kids can refill it when it’s empty. Lastly, I’ve opted to get the organic spices now that I’m not spending money on store-bought mixes. Do you have any substitutes you like to use for MSG? Please share!

First-World Contemplations – Don’t Buy the T-shirt

This is purely an opinion piece, exactly like all my other posts, and I want you to feel free to agree with me. Let’s talk t-shirts and how buying t-shirts can’t change our lives. In fact, I think buying a t-shirt can be a grave mistake. For example, one sad purchase would be the dated t-shirt. Another one is the t-shirt for an obscure event, especially if that event never happens again. If that event is a once-in-a-lifetime deal that no one’s really heard of, then take a picture of yourself experiencing that moment. No t-shirt necessary. A dated t-shirt is a little different. There might be sentimental value involved, and in such a case, you might consider how you can reclaim the material at the end of the year—and it should be in a way you will truly use. Like, a t-shirt bag is great and all, but we have reusable bags being handed out for free at every function. Is it worth the time and effort to remake a t-shirt into a bag?

We have all fallen for the myth that we are going to wear those t-shirts again. This is only true for a select few that get the honor of being worn to shreds by our brothers, sons, and husbands. As both a thrift store shopper and a donation sorter, I can assure you most households toss stacks and stacks of those custom-made, event t-shirts every year. The thrift stores, in turn, redirect those t-shirts and find other uses for them because they are donated in droves, and they do not sell. Nobody wants to sport the baby blue shirt with the “Haversham’s All-Stars 2013” on the front, and “Go HAS!” on the back.

What happens to these lonely, unwanted t-shirts? Maybe the story should be told by a movie, “T-shirt Story,” where a t-shirt with a cowboy hat and lasso gets jealous of a spaceman t-shirt. Cowboy t-shirt gets spaceman t-shirt thrown out of the house when the owners aren’t looking. Then, in an exciting twist of events, cowboy t-shirt decides to rescue spaceman t-shirt from a horrible t-shirt torturer. Maybe there could be a couple of sequels. Nyah. This story’s going to end up making me cry; I can feel it.

Seriously, lonely t-shirts are sent to nursing homes, where they are used to cover nicer shirts or they are cut up into bibs. They are also made into fat quarters for the quilters who don’t mind working with knit. Some people cut t-shirts into strips and make rag rugs. Those people are not me; but if you have the skill, I think you should go for it. For those of you into “family cloth,” have you considered the potential of these one-day event t-shirts, languishing and forgotten in your child’s drawer? Please think about that. I won’t. It makes me gag, but that’s just me.

How do I reuse old t-shirts? I use them to clean wood and as paint cloths. I also annoy toddlers with them by telling them they can’t paint unless they put a huge, man-size one over their clothes, and they hate me for it. Just so you know I’ve tried, I’ve made the t-shirt bags, too. My daughter made one that came out halfway decent. It was very small, so I stole it to hold my hairdryer. Her hairdryer is now naked and self-conscious. No worries; my daughter is still talking to me.

It isn’t that one-day-event t-shirts aren’t great, it’s that we are buying and donating an abundance of them. I’ve contemplated tallying up how much is spent on t-shirts by the average four-person family. How many sports team, club, work, church, and camp t-shirts do we consume in a year… and can t-shirts be cooked in a way that will make them nutritional? After thinking about the expense of t-shirts, I think it would be fun for budget-savvy families to start a “no-buy t-shirt” savings account. For every t-shirt they probably would have bought, they should put that money in savings. If every member of the family usually bought two t-shirts a year per person at an average price of $12.99 each, a four-person family would save… Wait. I’m not good at math. They would save money. And if families decided to use that money to help someone, they could tell people who were pressuring them to buy the t-shirt that they had committed the money they usually use to pay for t-shirts to a cause that is personally important to them.

What about the free t-shirts at events? Well, someone is paying for them, even if you get them for free. And I can’t help but wonder what would happen if event organizers considered that money as a donation for a cause instead of buying t-shirts with it. Like, instead of including a t-shirt in the registration fee, why not charge the same registration fee, figure out how much it would have cost to print those t-shirts, and advertise that “in lieu of t-shirts this year, a portion of your registration goes to such-and-such charity”? It’s trendy for birthdays, right? Basically, you get to not bring home another t-shirt for the same price that you get to help both a charity and help the overrun-with-t-shirts thrift store.

Together, I think we just might save the world… one less t-shirt at a time.

“Get off the Internet” Challenge

Last week’s short story, Disconnected, was prompted by a little experiment here at home. I promise; we were not plugging our brains into any USB ports. The challenge for our family for five days was to get off the Internet.

We rely heavily on the Internet to work and communicate, so the goal we set was to get off distracting media, like Youtube videos, tv shows, movies, and game apps. Even social media was not to be used for scrolling through posts—there had to be direct communication going on. (One concession was made: music could be listened to while work was happening.)

That first afternoon, I learned how much I rely on a screen while I’m eating. I usually eat lunch well after lunch because I get carried away with my work in the mornings. That quick bite is usually my time to catch up with Facebook and Youtube subscriptions. When I sat down to my sandwich, I felt the lack of a distraction. I was unentertained.

The withdrawal from watching shows or movies wasn’t as hard on me as it was on the kids. They were used to watching videos about cats scared by cucumbers and videos about making chewing and eating sounds to see if the listeners found it calming. They didn’t even have the videos of people commenting about the videos with the chewing sounds. Riveting, I know, but they had a hard time prying themselves away from the video-watching.

There was a great amount of unrest in the family atmosphere for those few days. I found it enlightening. Basically, because we didn’t have a device to flee to when a small conflict surfaced, the conflict became an actual annoyance. Fortunately, the conflict was then resolved sooner. No one could escape into their video-watching hidey holes to forget about it until the next confrontation.

The best thing that came out of our few days was sitting down together and talking. We played more board games and made more jokes and got in more arguments. It was great fun! And without the screens, we talked more at meal times. Interestingly, we didn’t eat at the table; we ate in the living room, where the seats are more comfortable. So, picture us in the living room not watching TV. Can you picture us? We’re sitting on the comfy, cushiony chairs, and we’re talking and eating. Novel, right? I think I understand why the Romans ate their meals reclining on couches. Seriously, has no one noticed that dining room furniture, in general, is not that inviting? Why do we make our eating room so stiff when eating is a pleasant activity and should be surrounded by all kinds of pleasing things in keeping with its… pleasantness? We also have our Bible study in the living room, so it became an easy transition from eating to reading together.

All in all, I think it was a great challenge. I stopped mulling over how I could effectively fix other people’s problems online and stopped caring how many plates I could fill on Diner Dash to move up to serving shrimp tempura. Instead, I became, naturally, more aware of doing nothing. I found myself breathing deeply and relaxing and just being. Doing nothing meant I had time to connect with me, which is so important, and which I tend to forget to do when my nose is stuck to a screen.

I hope you, too, will think about how you can spend your day being a little more connected—to yourself and to the people living right beside you. What do you like to do to keep connected?

Missing in Posting (MIP)

Report on MIP Blogger Rilla, 14 February 2019 at 0800 hours:

Rilla surfaced this morning with no outward signs of distress. Limbs all intact. Mind scattered but in good spirits. (Consulting blogger’s previous entries, frame of mind is somewhat typical.)

Past Whereabouts: Rilla assures us she was not abducted, but, rather, incognito, working on online projects under another name. Physical whereabouts include having bought a new house and moved in. Currently, the new home is undergoing a room addition.

Habits: She has been eating a better diet since her woeful first attempt at a 15-day juice fast. She still enjoys juicing and is excited about plant-based and paleo recipes. It’s likely she’ll share.

Teaching: Rilla admits to homeschooling all high-schoolers now, which explains the scattered thoughts. She is teaching grammar, writing skills, and literature outside of her homeschool. Heavily involved in a ring of authentic scholarship websites, Rilla peddles competitions to train students about the benefits of writing a decent essay.

Writing & Therapy: Her work in the past four years has been primarily non-fiction focused. 2017 was spent chipping away at a stubborn case of fiction-writing Writer’s Block through therapy. She is steadily beginning to unlock her emotions in writing, once more.

Rilla’s remarks: Happy Valentine’s Day, darlings!

How to Make Friends Who Drive You Places

My son, Magne, is taking a driving course this summer. In his first day of class he became fast friends with Jared, a fellow-student who sat in the desk next to him and asked, “So, have you ever been in jail?” My son looked him in the eye, did a double-take to figure out if he was serious, and responded bewilderedly, “No…”

Somehow Jared lighted on the perfect question. Seriously, I think we should all start conversations this way. Consider what this sixteen-year-old already knows:

First, it is never acceptable to begin a conversation with, “Hello. I don’t know you, but I would like to. Tell me a little bit about yourself, beginning with your name.” No, the direct approach renders the speaker socially despised and vulnerable to swift rejection.

Second, household dependents, like children, don’t have the experience in life to ask the variety of introductory questions that most ask on meeting someone new, such as, “What do you do?” or “Where do you work?” Okay, so adults don’t really vary from the occupation question. And that leaves sixteen-year-olds at a disadvantage.

Not ideal friend potential for taking you to the mall.

Third, once the stranger responds with an answer, Jared has an inside track on this friend’s potential. Sixteen-year-olds who have been to jail are generally less likely to retain their driver’s licenses, meaning they are less likely to be the friend to call when you need a ride somewhere. (Let’s face it; a car doesn’t magically appear once you get a license.)

I doubt Magne thought about any of this at the time. He was just happy to find someone in class who was willing to break the ice. Jared’s approach was somewhat mystifying, but the end result was satisfactory for both boys. Magne now knows there’s a good chance Jared can drive him somewhere.