I’m sorry

Rick Ryckeley's picture

For almost eight years now I’ve written this newspaper column. That’s over 390 stories about boyhood friends, family, and life’s observations through the somewhat distorted eyes of yours truly. Never once have I had to say I’m sorry. Depending on whom you ask, an apology for some of the things I’ve done, and penned, is long overdue.

I guess the first thing I should apologize for is that it’s taken eight years to finally write this column. In all that time, I’m sure I’ve offended someone out there in reader land.

For example: the person who didn’t like me chasing the snake out of my yard via the weed-eater. In my defense that sneaky snake started the fight – it chased me first. Unfortunately, it escaped. And for that, I’m sorry.

Old Mrs. Crabtree was my third and fifth grade teacher at Mt. Olive Elementary School. We thought all she wanted to do was make our lives miserable. Come to find out all she wanted was to make her 30 years and retire.

Mrs. Crabtree, I hope you’re finally enjoying life without students. I’d get all the kids from Flamingo Street together and throw you a retirement party, but I’m sorry. I don’t know where you live.

There’s a select group of folks out there that I know I’ve irritated. Not on purpose, mind you, but I’ve irritated them nonetheless. It’s all the drivers out there who have been or ever will be hopelessly trapped behind me. I’m sorry I lope around town doing the posted speed limits.

Those are the drivers who pound the steering wheel and wave gestures as they pass, only to be right in front of me at the next traffic light. I’m sorry you have a problem obeying the law. I’m sorry you don’t think driving slowly and safely is cool. And I’m really sorry about how your reckless behavior has caused far too many vehicle crashes and injuries in our county.

Next up for an apology is my dad. For all those times we said we were camping at Neighbor Thomas’s house but were really out just roaming the neighborhood getting into trouble. For all the stuff we did that you found out about. And all the stuff you didn’t. For all the sleepless nights I caused you and Mom. I’m sorry.

Enjoy your retirement down in Florida. Having raised five kids, you’ve earned it. I’ll be down next month. By then I hope you’ve forgotten to ask me about all that stuff you didn’t find out about.

I even owe the editor of this newspaper an apology. Through the years, sometimes this article has been sent in at the last moment. For that I’m sorry. Life can get really crazy when you have a kid.

It never ceases to amaze me how I can be sent into a tailspin with a simple phone call, a knock on the door, or a registered letter in the mail. The Wife also works 12-hour days and is in school for her Ph.D. Plus there’s taking time off to nurse me back to health from one of the many injuries and operations I’ve been struck with the last couple of years. Luckily none have involved my fingers, and I should be able to continue writing for years to come.

The last person I need to apologize too should have been the first. Yes, I owe The Wife an apology. For the other day, my love, I’m truly sorry.

Sometimes I can be a Neanderthal. Even Prince Charming had some chinks in his suit of armor. Just ask Snow White.

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