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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Commitment (01/05/12)

TITLE: Screaming Hot Commitment
By annie keys


Today is the day I keep a commitment I made to myself. On my 18th birthday, I’d promised myself that on my 50th birthday, I’d buy a hot car. In youthful assumption, I’d figured that, by the time I was a half century old, I’d have made my mark. I’d be married, career goal met, and my children would be grown; finally, I could do something for myself. So, now, it is here, MY time.

Closing the door to the 1993 Jaguar XJR 15, I pull out of the car lot. Smooth as cream. Out on the open highway, looking in all directions and seeing no traffic to compete with, I press on the gas. From 0 to 60 in 3.1 SECONDS! This car is screaming HOT and it’s going to be mine. Jaguar’s ultimate supercar, the XJR-15’s smoothly chiseled lines rank with those of the fabled C-Type, D-Type and XJ13 for sheer sculpted beauty. It’s been worth all the hard work, late nights, aggravations and pit falls. It’s time for all that commitment to bear fruit.

As I step on the gas, the adrenaline rushes through my veins like fire and I’m thrown back against the cool leather of the driver’s seat. Oh, YEAH! I can feel the power of the road through the steering wheel and the roar of the engine as it pours its energy out through the rear wheels. This is---pure—adrenalin.

As I accustom myself to the feel of an accelerated heartbeat, I notice that the road has a rhythm all its own. My mind is sedated by the scenery as it races by and I begin to think about my life. My first grandchild is on the way. My son is working hard to continue in school, to get his Master’s in Biochemistry. It will be financially tough for him, with the new baby. He’s done it right, I have no qualms about giving a hand up to a young person who is working hard.

The suspension on this car is amazing! I barely feel the rise and fall of the road beneath me. I could get used to this; I could love it, just saying. My life overview continues. Marge, my beautiful wife of 30 years, has endured so much because of my insatiable drive for career success.

She’s never complained, never balked, she’s always been right there, carrying not only her end of the load but many times; propping me up as well. I can see her now, when I drive this hot beast into the driveway. She’ll come out the door, wiping her hands on a t-towel, her financial concern overshadowed by commitment to my happiness.

When I married her, I, for sure, “married up”, as they say. I’ve taken good care of her; she’s never been in need. She’s had enough. I’ve kept my commitment to provide for her. True, we never took that cruise to Alaska we used to talk about when we were young. But, we’ve done a lot of stuff together, fun stuff, stuff that took planning and money. She hasn’t been neglected.

Do I have any current obligations that would suffer from this indulgence of self? My church is starting a new building project. Heaven knows, we need the youth facility! Last week, they had teens lined up around the walls of the gym. I’ve always supported the youth.

Saturday, I got an e-mail from the Pastor, asking for me to make a commitment to the building fund. My kid is raised; I’m not directly responsible for ministry to the youth anymore! The road turns abruptly and the car handles the transition without complaint. I love how this feels! My personal assessment ends. I think I’ve made my decision.

As I pull back into the car lot, the sales guy grins like a Cheshire cat, giving his buddy a ‘thumbs up’ as he sprints to greet me before I can even open the car door. For a moment, I sit in the silence, contemplating life’s commitments and the commitment I made to myself so many years ago. The reward for my hard work is, finally, within my reach. As I open the door my hand runs over the immaculate red finish of my lifelong dream.

The sales guy gushes, “Allllrighty then, my man, what could possibly prevent you from being the owner of this fabulous sports car?” Smiling as I firmly place the key in his hand, I look away and softly say, “Commitment”.

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This article has been read 431 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Brenda Shipman 01/12/12
I think I smiled all the way through this because this is exactly what my husband is experiencing right now at the age of 56. In fact, I got him a "Muscle Cars" book for Christmas.
I thought about reading this story to him, but hate to "spoil" his fun! Your story is so believable, authentic, well-written, challenging, and fun. Terrific job of SHOWING commitment. Wonderful title, too. Hope the church gets the youth building AND you get your dream car. ;-)
Judy Sauer 01/12/12
Isn't it funny how when we work so hard to achieve a goal only to get there and realize other things matter more? I enjoyed the thrill of your ride, and discerning what really matters.

You say your wife is satisfied. It is never too late to take that Alaskan cruise and exceed her expectations.
C D Swanson 01/13/12
This was such an enjoyable read. I smiled and enjoyed this from start to finish. Thank you for this. God Bless~
Virgil Youngblood 01/13/12
Nicely done. I can relate to this, having a Jag XKE as my dream car that I have never acquired for the same reason.
Theresa Santy 01/13/12
This was fantastic! Loved the descriptive detail, the emotion, the flow, and everything else.

Very nicely done.

Nancy Bucca01/15/12
I must say I love this story. Love it, love it, love it. Did I happen to mention how much I enjoyed reading it? It is, after all, every woman's dream: have husband give up toys for sake of God and family.
Cheryl von Drehle01/16/12
wow! just...wow! This is an excellent story: says so much without saying it directly. The title pulls the reader in immediately and the piece hits the ground running. Full of emotion and conflict without being judgemental or cynical. This really captures the complexities of life. Great job. My only caveat... stretches credulity to think of an 18 year old imagining him/herself as ever being 50! LOL
Leola Ogle 01/18/12
I, who don't care for muscle cars, was caught up in the feel of the drive in that car, as if I were experiencing it myself. I was so proud of the MC for his choice at the end, I wanted to cheer and clap! Great writing! Wonderful story! God bless!
Brenda Shipman 01/19/12
Way to go, Annie! Congrats on your ribbon ~ clap clap clap!!!
C D Swanson 01/19/12
Nicely done! Congrats!
God Bless~
Edmond Ng 01/19/12
An excellent piece and enjoyable read! Congratulation on winning third at your level!
Leola Ogle 01/19/12
Congratulations dear Annie! Well done!