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  • Writer's pictureKelly Marks

Shaken, not stirred

If you ask me what I want to be when I grow up, I’ll say a secret agent. I’ve always wanted to be that or part of the FBI. It’s one of those “if-I-had-to-do-it-over-again“ things. Maybe it’s a James Bond complex or a fascination with spies, but I’ve just thought it would be the coolest job.


In reality, if I were ever to become a secret agent, criminals everywhere would rejoice. I have neither the brains nor the brawn for that kind of thing. I also don’t have the nerves or the stomach for any of the intrigue. Now that I really think of it, I also don’t have the ability to keep secrets.


If I were at a PTA meeting for one of my kids and some random soccer mom asked me what I did for a living, I would lean in conspiratorially and say “If I told you, I’d have to kill you.“ Then I’d get excited and tell her, knowing I’d have to take her out. Oops, collateral damage.


The closest I have ever come to being an FBI special agent is that I have code names for the neighbors. There’s Work-out man, Messy yard family, Wake Forest nuts, and then there’s Blow Hard.


Over 20 years ago, on the short side of 30 minutes after moving in, a neighbor brought us a loaf of bread and introduced herself. We were informed of her great marriage to a wonderful husband who is an excellent provider, her own illustrious career, her two amazing children, and even both her and her husband‘s SAT scores of all things.


Like many people, she talks a big game, but she really doesn’t have much, if any, follow through.


Last week I talked about my sister-in-law, and how much of a Yes person she is. In fear of talking the talk, but not walking the walk, I decided to put it to the test. On Friday morning I made a vow to myself to say yes. In fear for my sanity, and the safety of my family, I did not tell a soul about this experiment.


At 8 AM, I had barely finished my 1st cup of coffee, and Madi wanted me to edit a paper. Yes.


At 9:10 AM, I really wanted to goof off, but said yes to studying and found some amazing information.


9:36 AM, Paul was upstairs in the same house I was in, and yet he texted me and asked me to come upstairs to help him find a paper. Yes.


At 9:50 AM, he asked me to go to the high school football game where his 40 year reunion would be taking place tonight. Did I want to go? Dear lord nooooo… but Yes.


At 1 PM, Paul asked if I wanted to do the podcast today. Yes


At 2 PM, Paul asked was I ready to sit down and do the podcast now? Yes.


At 5:30 PM, can you wear that pink shirt to the game tonight? I’d have to iron it. But yes.


6 PM, are you ready to leave for the game? (I will never be ready.) Yes.


Finally later that night, when my yeses were running low, he said, “Are you ready to leave the reunion?” Biggest yes of the day.


Saturday: the experiment is over. Any kind of Yes that is spoken will be laced heavily with sarcasm.


But in all honesty, I did notice something Friday. When I said yes right away, there was no dread. No fighting it. Yes. The decision is over. Most of the Yeses I said I would have said yes to anyway. Eventually. But the initial answer would have been no or some smart alec rendition of it. Saying yes really did seem to be a magnet to better energy. Even saying yes to something I wasn’t really excited about seemed to produce positive vibes.


There may be something to this, but for now I will say no to everything except spying out the windows. Creepy Van Guy is walking around the neighborhood, and I need to keep an eye on him.



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