Tuesday, July 17, 2012

A cautionary tale

Once upon a time, there was a girl. A girl who, while occasionally given to fits of economic impulsivity, generally lived within her means. Her means did not allow for purchase of fripperies like hardcover books, beautiful but impractical shoes, fancy-pants culinary ingredients, or glittery yet oh-so-unnecessary jewels. Most of the time, this girl was content…well, maybe not content, but tolerant…with her financial station.

One day she whiled away a quiet afternoon by perusing the pretty things offered for sale by the fanciful but dangerous dragon known as The Internet. She had spent many, many, many, many, many hours thus engaged before but had not been tempted by the dragon’s wares. This day, however, was different.

This day, she stumbled upon the most beautiful adornment she had ever seen. A ring. Possibly the most perfect ring ever created. A ring, she believed, created just for her.

A large, deep purple, rectangular amethyst sat above a wide band of silver. The stone was secured to the band by heavy yet delicate swirls of silver at each corner. The design was simple and whimsical, delicate and strong…like the girl. The dragon’s price was dear, but not so dear that it was beyond possibility, if she played her cards right and did not order delivery pizza too often.

She desired the ring. The desire sprouted deep in her heart and grew like Jack’s beanstalk until it leapt out of her mouth. “I will have this ring!” she declared.

Being a mostly-responsible girl, she put the ring at the very top of her wish list. And she wished. She wished for a fairy godmother to drop the ring into her lap. She wished for a handsome prince to place the ring on her finger. (Sometimes she just wished for the handsome, or even not-so-handsome, prince, but that is a different story.) She wished for a windfall. She wished for a magically low power bill that would leave just enough coins in her pocket to pay for the ring. (She did not, however, stash a leftover coin or two away on the rare occasions that she had a coin or two left over. Mostly-responsible, yes. Hugely gifted with foresight and a desire to save, not so much.)

Alas, her wishes did not come true. As the months passed, the girl occasionally tiptoed (tip-fingered? finger-tipped?) back to the site of her beloved ring, creeping quietly so as not to wake the dragon, and sighed as she gazed on the ring’s beauty. “Someday,” she whispered, “someday you will be mine.”

Then the mournful day came when she revisited the site only to find that the ring was gone. Vanished into thin ether(net). She searched frantically, googled hither and yon, certain she could find her darling ring hiding among the treasures in some other dragon’s lair. But it was as if the ring never existed.

She mourned.

Months and months and months went by. The girl was enticed by other charming jewels, even other rings, but she never forgot the swirled beauty. Even today, years after discovering the perfect ring – and years after losing it, probably to somebody's foolish stepsister with big feet and a sugar daddy – she searches for it. She knows that she will never find it but she also knows she will never be completely complete without it.

Life goes on and the girl goes with it. Other things make her happy and she has mostly accepted the loss of the ring she never had. But sometimes, when the moon is bright and the need to surf silently among the dragon’s merchandise is strong, she sighs and longs for the ring.

The moral of the story is this: When you find something you love, really, really, REALLY love, you must buy it. Now. It might not be there tomorrow.


  1. Oh no, such a sad tale. I hope the girl finds her ring one day. Keep searching.

  2. I'm with Jen. Good moral, woman.

  3. Oh. I'm so sad that it didn't land on your finger.

  4. Ohhh. I'm sorry. But the Pollyanna in me cant help but think that an even better ring is waiting around the corner ...

  5. Sometimes you just have to say "live for today". I hope that perfect ring shows up again someday.

  6. My pappy always said, "why put off til tomorrow, what you can buy today." Well, not really, but it's a darn good lesson.