Saturday, March 7, 2009

Chuck E Cheese and humanity

We decided to go to Chuck E. Cheese today. It was a rainy Saturday and I had promised to take Tristan there for weeks so off we went. As expected the parking lot was full and although the sign said that they could hold 418 people in the building I seriously thought there might be more than that inside. We first stood in a line that started outside in the rain, then finally moved inside a small entrance area that seemed 20 degrees warmer than it should have been because of the extra bodies now crowed in that small area. The heat and close proximity (Propinquity) allow for a clear identification of each of our unique smells we humans are capable of producing. Following this experience we stood in line waiting for enough people to leave the building so we could enter. It was a very long time. Finally passing through the turnstyle and authority of the Teenager running the gate we recieved our invisable security stamps on the back of our hands. We were in!

Well ok then we stood in another line to order our pizza with a side of tokens and then sent to another line to wait on a table. Then we waited 20 more minutes for the pizza while we squeezed in and out of people and stood in other lines to play video games. I can assure you that this kind of experience would drive most people crazy and yet we chose this time together.

What I want to talk about in my blog tonight is what I observed in the behaviors of all the human beings crowded in Chuck E. Cheese. In short I noticed two basic kinds of people.

The first is best understood in the action of the woman who was just coming in as we were leaving. She acted all self important and shouted at the teenager calmly running the gate, "Go get someone else to help you so we can get in this *$*^*&#" place!" The teenager did her best to act professionally and not let it bother her but we all know those kinds of words and attitudes often pentrate deep into our souls. Even worse they often change who we are if those voices are the ones we hear over and over. Sadly I fear that many of the parents there that day may have already had their souls altered years ago and now are passing it on through their words of parenting madness.

However, there is goodnews in my story tonight. In the midst of that chaos and potential riot producing situation there existed the other kind of person who brings out the best in peoples souls. It started by a simple gesture of rearranging the way we were all stuffed into the entryway. By all of us shifting just a little we were able to let an additional family of 4 come in out of the rain. Then we said our polite hellos. Then out of the blue the mother offered us an extra coupon to save us some money. We smiled and said thank you! You know it does not take much to nurture the soul. However, what we learn we pass on to the next generation and in times like this, even on to the next person in line. I am glad to see that when I experience that much propinquity with human beings there are still people in this world who have the God I learned as a child from my parents deep in their soul. As for the rest, I guess thats why I do what I do. Perhaps I will not be able affect every person on earth but if I go to many more Chuch E Cheese's I will have good start at it. . .

1 comment:

Timothy Cap Diebel said...

Grace and community at Chuck E. Cheese. Amazing. If it can happen there, we might even stand a chance at church.