The Stranger

This was one of those seemingly endless “forwards” that I received recently from a friend.  I don’t know where it originated from, but thought it was interesting. It certainly fits in well with my own philosophy, so I thought I’d share it with you here, having run out of blogging thoughts of my own lately:

A few years after I was born, my Dad met a stranger who was new to our small town.


From the beginning, Dad was fascinated with this enchanting newcomer and soon invited him to stay with our family.
The stranger was quickly accepted and stayed around from then on. 

As I grew up, I never questioned his place in my family.  In my young mind, he had a special niche. 

My parents were complementary instructors  –  Mom taught me good from evil, and Dad taught me to obey.   But the stranger . . . he was our storyteller.  He would keep us spellbound for hours on end with adventures, mysteries, and comedies.

If I wanted to know anything about politics, history, or science he always knew the answers about the past, understood the present, and even seemed able to predict the future!  He took my family to our first major league ball game.  He made me laugh, and he made me cry.  The stranger never stopped talking, but Dad didn’t seem to mind. 

Sometimes, Mom would get up quietly while the rest of us were shushing each other to listen to what he had to say, and she would go to the kitchen for peace and quiet (I wonder now if she ever prayed for the stranger to leave). 

Dad ruled our household with certain moral convictions, but the stranger never felt obligated to honor them.  For example, profanity was not allowed in our home – not from us, our friends, or any visitors.  But after a while our long time visitor, however, got away with four-letter words that burned my ears, made my dad squirm, and my mother blush.

My Dad didn’t permit the liberal use of alcohol but the stranger began to encourage us to try it. He made cigarettes look cool, cigars manly, and pipes distinguished. 

He talked freely (much too freely) about sex.  His comments were sometimes blatant, sometimes suggestive, and generally  embarrassing.. 

I know now that my early concepts about relationships were influenced strongly by the stranger.  Time after time, he opposed the values of my parents, yet he was seldom rebuked and never asked to leave. 

More than fifty years have passed since the stranger moved in with our family.  He blended right in and is not nearly as fascinating as he was at first.  Still, if you could walk into my parent’s den today you would still find him sitting over in his corner, waiting for someone to listen to him talk and watch him draw his pictures.  

His name?


We just call him ‘TV.’  


He has a wife now . . . . . we call her ‘Computer.’ 


Their first child is “Cell Phone”.  

Second child “I Pod”  

And just born this year a Grandchild: 


About reinkat

I am an iconographer, and have been studying Russian/Greek icons since 1995. I'm married with 3 children. I love hiking, camping, animals, my family and church--and icons.
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3 Responses to The Stranger

  1. SR says:

    Loved it!!! I do not know who wrote this, but I could not of said it any better! Thanks so much for sharing it. God Bless, SR

  2. Biltrix says:

    The TV really is another member of the family. I remember that at my Grandma’s house the TV was always on. People would be sitting around talking in the living room while the TV was blaring, but no one was listening to it — just another voice blaring in the background — until the weather report came on. Then, Grandma made everyone in the room be quiet. I always thought that was really odd.

    • reinkat says:

      Thanks for the comment, Biltrix. Your family sounds just like my family! Now that my mother is nearly deaf–well, talk about the TV BLARING!!!!
      It is funny how preoccupied with the weather we all are, but after all, it has an enormous impact on our immediate daily lives. It affects what we do during our day, when we do it, what clothes we wear (right down to which shoes and socks we put on). No wonder your Grandma wanted to pay attention to it! 🙂

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