I had a gig last weekend in Illinois. I’d planned on driving because I love to drive when I have the time to do so. Now that I’m married, I don’t get to hit the open road as much as I’d like, but I still drive when afforded the opportunity. Last week’s trip to the Land of Lincoln was such an opportunity – or so I’d hoped.
Toward the end of the week, I started seeing weather reports that would adversely affect my travel plans. Due to its excellent gas mileage, I usually drive my Toyota Camry wherever I go. This time, however, I decided to take my wife’s 4Runner due to the threat of ice and snow. I took it to the shop to get serviced and winterized and was very proud of myself for doing so.
My wife was not impressed.
She told me I needed to fly. I told her that it was too late to fly and that I really wanted to drive – besides, the airfare would be through the roof this late in the game, or so I thought. She didn’t budge from her stance but reluctantly let me make the decision. I was going to drive – or so I thought.
After lunch Thursday, I saw another weather report and, thanks to my inner voice, decided to at least check on flights. To my delight, the tickets were significantly less than I’d imagined. Furthermore, I called Southwest to see what the total would be using my military discount. I was astounded at what the ticket agent told me. My round-trip ticket from Atlanta to St. Louis, along with a rental car for the weekend, was less than what I would’ve spent in gas in the 4Runner. Additionally, the flight was only 90 minutes, whereas the drive would’ve taken me over eight hours in ideal driving conditions, and the driving conditions were hardly ideal. In fact, I heard on the news Tuesday morning that many residents in Nashville are still iced in. Thankfully, I listened to my inner voice – and my wife.
I had an amazing experience providing a humorous program on leadership and resilience to the Family Readiness Group (FRG) leaders of the southern region of the Illinois National Guard, but I did leave just in time on Sunday as the temperature was to fall to zero that night. That is 0 degrees. In other words, it was going to be so cold that degrees would cease to exist.
I made it to the airport in St. Louis and was ready to fly back; however, before doing so, the importance of listening to my inner voice presented itself once again.
There I stood, chewing my gum at a urinal at Lambert International Airport in St. Louis. I saw a wad of gum resting in the bottom of the urinal and wanted to spit mine out, too, but I knew it was wrong, because someone would have to remove it. I could hear my wife telling me not to do it, too. Against my better judgment, I spit it out anyway; however, it bounced off the urinal and landed on the floor. Now I had yet another moral dilemma: do I leave it there or do the right thing and pick it up? Someone would have to pick it up, and that someone would be me. I stooped down to pick up that piece of gum that I never should have spit out in the first place, but when I did, my backpack shifted towards my head causing my nose to graze the front of the urinal. This was not one of my finer moments in life. Lesson learned.
The moral of the story is to listen to your inner voice. If you’re a married man, that inner voice might just be your wife, and it’s usually right. Usually.
Jody Fuller is a comic, speaker, writer and soldier. He is also a lifetime stutterer. He can be reached at jody@jodyfuller.com. For more information, please visit www.jodyfuller.com.