“Sometimes the road less traveled is less traveled for a reason.” – Jerry in SEINFELD “The Baby Shower”
DreamBlogger Ken Sheetz
It was December 23, 2010. I had just finished my second trip to Mt. Shasta. Mica and Marta was sound asleep in the back of Sarah Larsen’s family minivan.
While Sarah napped too, I had the chance to listen to the radio and reflect on the amazing meditation Joy Phoenix had led in the pyramid at Mt. Shasta. With only 5 minutes notice Joy had given such a lovely ceremony that I realized my policy of letting the pros lead these meditations while I record them in film and text is one the smartest things I do in DreamShield. See the full story here.
As highway 5 rose up before me I thought about the gas station in the heart of Mt. Shasta that had been converted into a spiritual crystal spot for people to fill their souls rather than cars.
A few hours earlier we had all howled at the full moon in victory. A foot of snow in a driving blizzard had not stopped us. The mission was success to meditate on healing the ozone layer had been a success.
So how had this dream mission turned into a CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM episode with me as Larry David?
Fresh from success in the pyramid, a 24 foot by 24 foot replica made of plywood for the many spiritual projects of Mt. Shasta, I decided to grab a celebration dinner before we headed back to LA. My choice, because DreamShield had begun in Italy last year in May, was a little Italian restaurant on the quaint main street of Mt. Shasta.
An older woman, not part of our LA group, a Shasta local light worker, joined us. Let’s call her Marge so as to spare her any embarrassment and me any lawsuits.
Our group had grown to about eight people as we took our table in the Italian place. It looked more like a family fast-food joint than the fine Italian spot I’d hoped it would be. Marge the local light worker took up a seat at the head of the table and began to look over the menu.
“I’m vegan. Haven’t been to a restaurant in 20 years. I bet they don’t have anything I can eat.” Marge said as though it were somehow my fault.
I nodded with a smile, wondering why Marge came along with us in the first place if she hated restaurant food. As I looked over the menu I noticed in the light now that Marge had on unusual makeup. “Is that silver dust on Marge’s face?” I wondered to myself.
Sarah Larsen got a phone call. She headed for the door, asking me to order pasta for her.
“Wait! I see what I want! Minestrone soup! I think I can eat that!” Marge cheered, as no one at the table seemed to care.
“Great. Here comes the waitress.” I said.
The waitress was about 25 but she had a world weariness of a woman of 40. “Can I get you guys some water?”
“I brought my own!” said Marge pulling an alien looking bottle from her metallic large purse.
I caught the waitress roll her eyes to the hostess as if to say, “Spiritual nut jobs. Thanks for giving me this table.”
Trying to get this moving before Marge started pulling out a vegan meal from her cave of a purse I ordered, “I’ll have the All You Can Eat salad.”
“I have to warn you, sir, you can’t share the All You Can Eat Salad with your friends,” the waitress proclaimed loud enough for the whole restaurant to hear.
“Got it. I’d like Italian dressing on the salad, please.”
“I mean it, sir. The All You Can Eat Salad is for one person only.”
“Roger that. Italian dressing,” I said, wondering why the waitress was still not writing down my order.
Mica Monet, one of my LA group, chimed in before I could ask why my order was not getting taken. “Does egg plant pasta does that come with a salad?”
“Yes,” the waitress shuffled and looked down at her feet, “But again, you can’t share salad with the table.”
“Why not?” I said. “It’s not a All You Can Eat Salad. She buys it and shares it, your restaurant losing nothing.”
“Makes it hard for us to make sure you guys are not sharing salad if she does that,” the waitress said as though that made sense.
“You know, miss, I think we get the “no sharing the salad idea here. We’re all grown-ups and you have our word: No salad sharing.”
“Does the minestrone come with a salad?” said Marge, derailing my chance to get my salad order in.
“It’s soup not a salad, ma’am.” said the waitress like she was talking to a crazy person.
“Probably not organic anyways.” giggled Marge coyly.
“Who’s next?” said the waitress, oblivious Marge’s light worker joke or effort to be salad pals.
“Did you get my All You Eat Salad order, miss?” I asked
“Because the manager will fire me if you share the All You Can Eat Salad!” the waitress said, pleading as though her kid’s future might depend on hang in the balance.
“Sounds like a swell guy you work for. But you’ve clearly explained the rules and we’ve agreed to them. Please take my order.” I said, not believing this dinner had erupted into a Larry David comedy.
While I felt sorry for this poor confused waitress I was deeply insulted at the shabby treatment me and my bunch was getting. So I closed my menu and said, “OK, we’re going to make the salad thing easy for you. We’re leaving.”
“Thank you!” the waitress said without a hint of sarcasm. She was thrilled we were leaving.
“But I was really looking forward to the minestrone.” said Marge, almost in tears.
“Marge, you’re free, along with anyone else, to stay here. Me, I’m going across the street to the Thai place where I’ve been treated with some decent respect.”
I got up and everyone from the group followed me out the door except Marge. Marge gave the minestrone on the menu one last longing look and, with a deep sigh, followed us out the door into the snow. When she looked across the street Marge’s sad face lit up like a Xmas tree.
“Ha ha! You fucked yourself!” Marge shouted jumping up and down and pointing at the dark Thai restaurant across the street. “It’s closed! Ha! You fucked yourself!”
Now I’d only been doing this spiritual stuff about 6 months at this time. That was going from a cold stop as a corporate businessman who built skyscrapers, world headquarters for giants like Target Stores and Hyatt Hotels, to running ozone healing meditations in a pyramid at the base of Mt. Shasta. And in that short time I’d come to love the peaceful light workers I’d met so far. Hearing I’d “Fucked myself” from a light worker was giving me indigestion and I’d not even eaten yet.
Rather than sink to Marge’s level I walked across the street, hoping to give myself time to cool off. “Be right back. Maybe the owner is still there.” I said over the howling SOLO taunting laughter of Marge.
I slipped a bit in the snow as I crossed the street, gaining a cackle from Marge that sounded more witch-like than light worker. I peered in the window hopping for the owners who I’d me the night before to still be stacking chairs. But no dice. The Thai place was abandoned.
“Ha! See? Fucked!” shouted Marge from across the street. The other people from my group distanced themselves from Marge, who it seemed had taken it personally that I had spoiled her first minestrone in 20 years and was bent on a mission to get me riled up.
Happy the group was uncomfortable with the silver faced Marge’s outburst gave me confidence I could keep my cool and I made my way back to my gang.
“OK. I’m going to the Black Bear diner. Anyone is welcome to join me… long as they don’t have a salad.”
The group all cracked up, except for Marge who said, “Do they have minestrone on the menu at the Black Bear?”
“I don’t know, Marge. But you are welcome to join us and see” I added without any sarcasm.
“I think I’d rather you took me back to my car. Don’t want to risk them not having minestrone,” said Marge.
And so before we went to the Black Bear, a place that’s treated me well, we drove Marge back to her car and she said not another word except “Bye”.
Sarah Larsen, who we picked up along the way, still on her cell phone asked, “What was Marge upset about?”
“Minestrone.” I said and everyone burst into laughter at Sarah’s confused look.
Later in Nashville at Spirit Recovery ranch for the big global addiction mediation, when I’d spend more time with another Sarah — a lot of Sarahs show up in the light work — from Mt. Shasta, I’d learn that “Marge”, a local, had been critical of me walking out of the Solstice Salad restaurant. It was a good lesson for me that even light workers from Mt. Shasta are still only human.
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