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Fortune Cookies, Robins & Irony

I had every intention of writing here after my last post, but have been somewhat remiss. Crazy family happenings changed my schedule. In lieu of a more thoughtful post, I thought I’d simply share some completely unrelated thoughts that have been mulling around my head.



When it rains, it really does pour.

In the middle of the downpour, it may seem that it will never stop – it does. Wait it out or go play in the rain.


Week after week things seem to not be working out in your favor. One night after drowning your sorrows in a meal of yummy dim sum, you decide that perhaps you’re being melodramatic. Circumstances may seem awry, but the idea that everything is working against you is just silly.

Then, you will open your fortune cookie to read:

“If it seems fates are against you today, they probably are.” 

Immediately after reading these words of wisdom, your husband will crack open his cookie to read something like: “You are filled with grace and will be most blessed.” He will then share these words with you, all the while grinning from ear to ear, stifling his laughter as he crunches on his cookie, shaking crumbs off of his shirt.

(*Please don’t write me to express your concern that I now believe wholeheartedly in fortune cookies. I don’t. I just respect the irony, as does my husband. On a side note, did you know the largest manufacturer of fortune cookies in the world is based in Brooklyn? Who knew?)


It is possible to be moved to tears upon witnessing the remarkable beauty in nature, such as the waters surrounding the Isle of Capri. Seeing such breathtaking beauty, I wept. And if I ever make a return trip, I’m sure I will again.


When driving a 1999 Buick Park Avenue (affectionately named in our house the land yacht or the HMS Shupe,) all other drivers upon first noticing your vessel will experience an immediate and intense urge to hit the gas, thereby passing you at any cost. Said drivers will then resume their comfortable traveling speed, even if it is a slower rate than that which your ship was sailing in the first place.


When your four-year old son grabs the unopened, full to the brim, gallon of milk from your refrigerator with every intention of filling a glass for himself, you instinctively lunge forward to avert disaster. Reaching to take hold of the jug, you proclaim, “It’s too heavy for you. Let me do it. I don’t want you to drop it.” At the precise moment your hands grip the jug, it will slip out of your fingers and fall to the floor, creating a remarkably dramatic dairy explosion, shooting milk in every direction, including at your mouth-gaping-wide-open four-year-old son. That moment – will live in on your son’s memory. And he will remind you of it, especially when he turns thirteen.


Growing up in Michigan, you learn that the white pine is the state tree, the Petoskey stone is the state stone and the state flower is the apple blossom. You also learn that the robin is the state bird. As a young child, you color pictures of robins. You begin to take notice of them as you walk home from the bus stop. You develop the sense that they are friendly creatures, singing their songs just for you.

Until one day when you have a home of your own, complete with a patio. And after a long day, you decide to relax on your patio shaded by the deck above it, only to be dive bombed by a wing-flapping ornithological wonder that you assume must be a raptor of some kind. And then you see it. And it is no raptor, but is in fact, your beloved robin.

And this robin, along with its bully gang of feathery friends will launch attack after attack on the once pleasant haven that was your patio. And you are left feeling betrayed by the bird you once thought of as your singing, feathery friend, afraid to go outdoors for the summer, lest you fall prey to another attack.


There is such a thing as a passive aggressive bear. Really.


A wild turkey can be a very intimidating bird. Trust me.


There are places worth seeing that you can only get to by hiking into the deep dark woods.


The climb up the mountain can be excruciating, but the view from the top is always, in my experience, worth it. (Unless, of course, there are robins.)


6 Comments Post a comment
  1. I can relate to the milk jug incident. 🙂

    July 29, 2012
  2. Nice to see you back and know that you’ve got your humor intact. I guess at the end of the day …or many difficult days..our humor is one of the things that will see us through. Take care.

    July 30, 2012
  3. Hi Corinne! Glad you enjoyed the post. I agree – keeping your sense of humor is key to getting through the bumpy patches. It’s always good to laugh. Thanks so much!

    July 30, 2012
  4. Ok, how fun are you? I love this post & am going to read it aloud to my man. He will love it too. Love you, dearest friend!

    September 16, 2012

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