It was memorial day weekend 2005. Kyle and I had booked a last minute vacation to Fredericksburg, TX, back before kids when you could just up and plan a trip at the last minute. We had a wonderful trip, it is to this day one of my favorite weekends with him. I remember at one point we were talking about how long it was taking us to get pregnant and he assured me that he would make sure I was a mother, no matter what lengths he had to go to, he would get us a baby. It was short and sweet, and it was probably our first discussion where it was understood that we would adopt someday.
But I'm getting off track here, back to my story. We spent this particular day walking around all the shops in town and that night we were plum tired out. So we went to this bar/restaurant that had a live country band playing music that night. We ordered some drinks and some nachos and took a table in the front/middle of the room. The band was really good, the drinks were good, and the nachos were excellent. The band started playing "Proud to be an American" by Lee Green Wood. Now I like that song very much, I think it has a wonderful message, and I admit it, it has even brought some tears to my eyes when I've heard it at the right moment. It's a good song, but that was really as far as I took it.
Then it happened. Some people off to the side of us stood up, they might have taken off their hats too, I couldn't see, anyways this song made them feel like they would like to stand up in honor of what it was saying. Ok, I get that, I didn't really feel the need to stand up, so I kept eating my nachos. Then another person stood up, and I could hear another few hesitantly stand up, crowd mentality was taking over, they didn't know why they were standing, but if everyone else was going to stand then they would too.
At this point we can't see most of the room but we can feel that most people are standing up. Kyle leans over to me and says, "Do you think we should stand up?". I tell him no, it's not the national anthem, it's a country song, my feet are killing me and I'm going to sit here and enjoy my nachos. So that's what we did.
Well it turns out that we were indeed the only people in the room that didn't stand up and after the song was over the band took a break, providing an awesome opportunity for some
redneck fool lovely man to come up and harrass us. So he saunters over and says, "I see you didn't stand up during Proud to be American, what, you some kind of Iraqi lovers or something?"
I was mad, no I was livid, Jesus was not winning the battle right then and I was ready to give him a piece of my mind about what kind of idiot thinks I'm somehow less patriotic because I didn't stand up for a country song and further more how much indeed I do love Iraqis and isn't that why we're there anyways, then maybe something good could come out of....
But after I said about one and a half words, Kyle stopped me, with a voice that he rarely uses but one he knows I'll listen to. He then looked away from the man until he left. I then decided to go to the bathroom in an attempt to calm down. This apparently was not very successful because on the way out I saw the
redneck fool lovely man again and couldn't help but give him a dirty look (I still wasn't going to let Jesus win this one). He said something like, "You got a problem with me lady." To which I looked at Kyle and saw that I either walk away now and let us leave or he was going to get in a bar fight of his own to defend my honor. So I left.
I know, it's not really a full out bar fight but it's the closest I've ever come. Of course that
redneck fool lovely man ruined that beautiful song for me, now everytime I hear it, I think about exactly what I should have said to him, for the record here it is.
"Sir, I'm sorry if I offended you by not standing up during that song, it was not intentional, and I very much am proud to be an American. But really I am a hundred times more proud to be a follower of Jesus, so yes I am an 'Iraqi lover' and my prayer is that the outcome of this war is a country where the Iraqi people can live in freedom, especially the freedom to worship the One true God."
Jesus always wins me over in the end.