And so in the "No good deed goes unpunished" department, I offer the following submissions from the past few weeks
First came the Relay For Life, unquestionably one of the most worthy causes on the planet. Cannot think of a better way to spend three hours running / walking than for the purpose of raising money and awareness for cancer research. To be sure, as I jogged around the track from 6 a.m. to 7 a.m., I felt great inside and out.
Ditto for hour two as my oldest childhood friend and surrogate sister Michelle Coppola joined me in a brisk round about - and round and round and round. By hour three, Shel and I were circling ourselves silly but still in great spirits.
So much so, that we pondered walk / running the entire 24-hour stretch next year. Heck, I even ran an extra three miles home.
And that, my friends, is how I developed this pronounced limp.
"How can I be such a wimp after only doing three hours?" I lamented aloud. "People do this every year for the entire day! Senior citizens and little kids! I am a major loser," whined little old me.
A month later and I'm still taping up that left ankle. Hmpf No. 1.
The next raspberry came in the form of an adorable Great Dane / boxer mix that I rescued off the road from certain annihilation last Friday.
She was adorable and sweet and so close to getting hit by about five cars - and that was just in the span of time I witnessed after hopping out of mine to try to help find her owners. After several failed attempts to locate her home, I brought her to mine and called the 800 number on the tag on her collar.
Although my own dog was giving me the cold paw, Kyle wanted to keep this friendly new dog. All I wanted to do was return Lacy back to her house safely, but I had to admit she sure was a cutie pie.
Which perhaps I inadvertently conveyed to her owner Nasty McMeanpants when I finally got a hold of him, since his initial reaction to my saving his beloved pet was a thinly-veiled accusation of attempted dog-napping on my part.
"Yes, yes, I'm stealing her. That's why I called you and gave you my address and phone number."
Hmpf No. 2.
As for Hmpf No. 3, that designation is reserved for my neighbor, that's right, this guy lives right around the corner from me I digress. When I saw a set of keys lying in front of his driveway on a morning run recently, I didn't want their owner to be searching in vain, so I scooped them up and took them to the home directly in front of which I'd found them laying.
Surly Sam shut the door on me once (seriously, I couldn't make this up) and when he finally responded to my knocking, it was with a cluck of his tongue: "Well they aren't my keys, what do you want me to do with them?" Thinking he might want to ask his pals or side neighbors if they were missing a set, I sheepishly left them on the stoop, apologized and limped away.
I heard the door slam behind me.
And just when I thought acts of volunteerism had truly become taboo, my son, husband, sister, nephew and brother offered our time to help with the annual anniversary Mass honoring Trumbull and Mahoning county marrieds at St. Columba Cathedral last Sunday.
And bam, gratitude.
You cannot imagine the thank-you's we got from the celebrants and the honoree - including one very special couple being feted there that day: my parents.
They were literally beaming as they saw their kids and grandkids step up to the plate, largely out of love and respect for them.
Ta, da! The smile on my Mom and Pop's faces that day effectively erased all aforementioned hmpfs. Well, at least until I get punched in the eye for returning a lost kitten or something.
Kimerer is a Tribune Chronicle columnist and eternal optimist even when the glass only has a few drops left. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.