I missed a day of work last week to wait for the police to come investigate the vandalism and theft surrounding KingofHearts's truck. And by "investigate" I mean, barely take a cursory glance as they're walking by while I'm standing in the rain trying to point out the vehicle in question, and when I ask if they want to see the truck, muttering something to the effect of "yeah, yeah, yeah, let's just go inside so I can give you a case number for your insurance company". There's some darn fine police work being done somewhere in the world, but I'm pretty sure I haven't been witness to it in PG county.

I flew to Kansas City on business the next day and got back Saturday night. I'd left the nutshell version of the truck saga on the office voicemail so my boss knew why I was out but I hadn't spoken to her about it until yesterday. When she came in, I gave her the whole spiel and she joked: "I think you may want to consider switching religions or something... things aren't going so well for you these days."

"Yeah," I quip, "the God of Abraham doesn't really seem to have my back lately."

Not to get all glass-half-full here, but it's so interesting to me how people look at the things in their lives that happen. OK, yes, we are thinking about renaming this month "Sucktember", but in a lot of ways I really feel blessed and lucky that things have worked out for us how they have in the last few weeks.

We have a fire, which could have possibly a) killed all of us and/or b) destroyed the house and everything in it. But it didn't do either of those things. For whatever reason, KingofHearts woke to the sound of the alarms, which on any other day would not have happened, and got us out of the house before we were really in danger. The fire department got there and extinguished the fire minutes before a pretty large stash of chemicals had a chance to catch fire and explode. If the fire had started during the day, no one would have been there to hear the alarms and it would have been way too late to save much of the house by the time someone in our working neighborhood might have seen any smoke and called the fire department. We could have very easily been homeless but it turns out we didn't even bother to file a claim with our homeowners' insurance because the damage was right around the same amount of our deductible. If you've got to have a fire in your house, I highly recommend this manner of doing it.

The truck breaks down at pretty much the worst time possible. KingofHearts just started a new job and we really haven't had time to recover from the financial hit we took from the good University of Maryland in getting his degree. But it broke down in the driveway. Not on the Beltway somewhere in the 40 miles between here and his work where it was more likely to happen. We were able to just push it back a few feet safely without endangering our lives amidst rush hour traffic or standing by the side of the road for hours waiting for a tow truck.

Someone breaks into the truck and steals the radio. Before that, we were (or at least I was, I'm sure KingofHearts would disagree) actually considering fixing the truck. I know, dumping $2000 on a new engine into a truck that's really on it's last legs is a poor investment, but the two grand seemed much easier to part with than what it would cost for a new car. But we've been concerned about the safety of that truck for quite some time now and with winter coming up and KingofHearts driving it as much and as far as he is, I actually feel quite relieved that we're going to get a new vehicle that might actually be able to stop on it's own when it's necessary rather than using the two cars in front of it to do that job. This was the last straw, making the choice to dump the beast and search for a new set of wheels much more clear.

Several years ago, a close friend of mine decided to buy a motorcycle and only a few months after he bought it, he wrecked and totaled it. It was a pretty bad accident and he was lucky enough not only to be alive afterwards, but to have walked away from it with no broken bones and few scratches. I happened to be in town a week or so later and we were sitting at a favorite coffee house hangout of ours from college while he described the accident to me. About that time, he looked down and pointed out a couple of big holes in his shirt and said "Wow... I was wearing this shirt when I crashed... I should get rid of it, it's cursed."

"Maybe it's your lucky shirt," I said. "You didn't die."

I believe that to this day, he has still kept that shirt.