648: Philosophy of Relationships, Blackberry Style

There is plenty of time while picking blackberries on the side of a dusty red dirt Georgia road on a hot, humid, and sunny June day to entertain philosophical thoughts. The task itself is repetitive, though fairly exacting, so that the mind is mostly free to pursue other pursuits while the hands are engaged.

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When you see a blackberry on the bramble that you desire to pluck, you must first weigh the relative possibilities of achieving it versus the potential difficulties, for example, its position nestled within the thorny brambles that protect it. This is very much like that first full look at that gorgeous guy or girl that spikes your blood pressure and makes your eyes dilate. Once you determine the difficulty level for that particular berry is surmountable, you must grasp the berry gently, or all you will be left with is a red-purple stain on your fingers, as blackberries are very tender and easily crushed. Another person’s feelings are often just that tender, especially at first, when you don’t know their triggers and tender subjects.

If you can grasp the object of your desire gently enough not to crush it, then comes the process of bringing it to the basket. Its defenses will snag you in this retrieval effort, and you cannot allow yourself to react harshly or instinctively, jerking back when you feel the bite and sting of the bramble’s thorns, or they will merely dig deeper, drawing blood. You must negotiate with them, twisting, turning, maneuvering gently, always gently as you draw the succulent berry closer. This is the intricate relationship dance as each of you come to know the other, drawing out old splinters and working through the unpacking of old baggage, which each of us brings with us to every relationship.

Once you have the berry free of its entanglements, you can add it to your basket to take home. Marry it – claim this person as yours, and pledge yourself to it, heart and soul.

When your berry basket is filled, you can take the result of your time and effort home to your significant other. If they recognize what you have offered to them, your time and effort, along with the tangible sweetness of the berries, you are blessed in the relationship department fully as much as you were blessed in the berry picking endeavor.

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