I am known for talking to everyone. Complete strangers on the street, in elevators- wherever! In this story, though, I did not initiate the conversation – the other person did. It occurred while I was in Glyndon, Maryland, my sister’s very, very small town out side of Baltimore.
On New Year’s Eve day, I walked to the post office to mail my holiday cards. The office was closed so I turned to go to a blue mailbox. Just then, a large white SUV drove into the parking lot and the driver rolled down the window.
Driver: “Is the office closed?”
Driver: “Is the other office open?”
Harriet: Blank Look
Driver: (again) “Is the other office open?”
Harriet: “I do not live around here.”
Driver: “Oh, I guess I will need to go check it out.”
Then I asked “If you are going to a larger post office, would you mind taking my mail, as this box will probably not be picked up until Monday.” He first hesitated, and then said as I was walking towards the SUV, “I do not know if I want to take that responsibility.” By now, I am at his window handing him the envelopes, and said that they are just my holiday cards.
As he took the cards, I began to notice how handsome and healthy he looked, and thought that he must be into sports. I said, “As long as you do not root against the Patriots!” He looked at me blankly and said “I root for the Ravens!”
And I said “That is fine, just do not root against the Patriots. ” And he repeated his comment “I root for the Ravens!” and I repeated “Don’t root against the Patriots!”
And then he said “Ma’am, I play for the Ravens. I am Todd Heap” I looked blank again; I wasn’t sure to believe him or not. I looked at this athletic specimen of a man, and said, “You are not very big, so you must be a receiver!” And he said that he was a tight end and that he does catch balls. I smiled still not knowing what I had started. He said he was still angry with the Patriots for beating them in October. Of course he was wondering why I bring up the Patriots in Raven country. He asked where I was from and what I was doing here. I shared. Then he said “I guess I am taking your mail to the post office… and tell your sister Todd Heap says hello.” I reassured him that she would be pleased and that if the Patriots lost I would root for the Ravens.
I thanked him and walked back to the house with a big smile on my face. I relayed the story to my sister, but alas, she does not know the players names. Back in Boston, I relayed the story to my son and found out that Todd Heap is 10 years veteran with the Ravens, all pro, 6’5’’, weights over 240 pounds and a very well know tight end!
Not only did I not know him but I called him small! And asked him not to root against the Patriots! But he initiated the conversation!!!