Years ago, there was a TV sitcom called Cheers. Cheers was a cozy neighborhood bar in Boston, where a hilariously normal cast of characters would gather for a drink and discuss a variety of topics still relevant today. One of my favorite lines were spoken by Norm, the mail carrier, during the final episode when he disclosed the secret to life. The secret, he said, “a pair of good shoes.” As a person with small feet which makes it difficult to find shoes that fit, I think Norm’s advice is good.
The last line of the theme song was profoundly simple and true, “You want to go where everybody knows your name.” Isolation and loneliness fall away when we are known. We belong. We are family, or friend, or community.
Back in April, I purchased a Penn State yard sign that reads: “We are…Waiting for friends, family and field hockey.” It seemed an appropriate, positive symbol of hope, and a way to support PSU Field Hockey while waiting out the pandemic. We’ve been waiting for six months now, and we will be waiting longer as the Big Ten has cancelled fall sports. So when we decided to invite each of our grandchildren to get a turn to spend a couple of nights at our house, Rod and I modified the sign. Twelve-year old Ross was first, and his face lit up when he saw it.
Imagine what a different place the world would be if we were greeted by such a sign. You, and I, need a place where everyone knows our name. Let us be that for others. “See, I have written your name on the palms of my hands.” Isaiah 49:16. ~ Anne