Thursday, October 16, 2014

A Long Delayed Thank You

Earlier this week, I was packing up some boxes in my basement in anticipation of moving. The task seemed pretty menial at the time. I was digging through old photos, discarding items I no longer used, and generally creating order out of chaos. In one of the boxes, I found a stash of office supplies that used to be at my desk when I was in high school and college. It contained pencils, pens, a hole punch, etc. At the bottom of the pile, I discovered a small green box and recalled that it contained something unusual.

You see, in this box, was an honest to goodness fountain pen. That's right - one of those "old timey" writing instruments that were primarily used before the invention of the ball point pen. My memory having been appropriately jogged, I started remembering where the pen had come from. Then it struck me. I must have been 11 or 12 years old and the pen was a gift from an older couple my parents showed dogs with. I used to visit them and assist them with caring for their Pulis (a rare canine breed from Hungary.)

I decided to take the pen into the office and see if I could get it working. After a few minutes of cleaning out the ink and attaching a new inkwell, the pen was working smoothly and I was off and writing. Let me just say, there is nothing quite like signing your name with a fountain pen! Now that the instrument was back and working, I was curious about the value. I did a quick internet search and was flabbergasted. The pen, which I then held, was no ordinary writing utensil. It was a Cross brand pen with a 14k nib (the part that the ink flows to which touches the paper.) Little did I know, this pen was a very expensive gift to a very unappreciative "tweenage" me.

Now knowing the value of what I was given, and quite frankly, appreciating it a lot more, I called up my folks and asked if they still knew the couple who had given me the pen (as I hadn't talked to them in years.) They were    elderly and my parents hadn't seen them in quite some time. I took to the internet and tried to do some searching, but sadly, came up fruitless. So, to Bobbi and Bernie Silverman, if you ever happen to come across this blog post, please know just how incredibly thankful I am; not only for the pen, but for the life lessons you taught me.

As usual, you are probably saying to yourself "Wow, cool story, but what does this have to do with DeMolay?" As we approach the Thanksgiving holiday, I'm reminded just how ungrateful we generally can be. I know that I'm guilty of that trait at times. It's important to take time to say thank you to those that assist your life. Whether those persons be your parents (the first Precept, Filial Love), your Advisors and mentors (the third Precept, Courtesy), or your friends (the fourth Precept, Comradeship), we all need to find time to be more appreciative of those around us.

In that spirit, I have a thank you card to write (with my new pen, of course!)

Frat! ~ "Dad" Seth Anthony

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