Recently, as you may recall, the little doormat that was once outside of my apartment in the hallway was taken. I am not sure why someone would steal a used doormat, but there you have the situation as it happened: gone. A rather pleasant turn was added to this story, however, when I received in the mail recently a doormat, sent as a gift by a kind reader of this blog. That's right. There is a brand new doormat on the other side of my front door right now. I thought that was really nice. And in fact, something similar happened when a colander was sent to me by a different thoughtful person, also not related to me, also not long ago. All of this is really pretty cool. It is amazing how kind and generous people can be.
Or at least that's what I had thought. But then I realized that to be really and truly happy, to fully reap the benefit of these gifts, it would have to be unique that I was receiving them. I mean, I don't know how things stand. If everybody gets gifts like this on the regular, then maybe it is not so much of a special thing. One of the realizations that I have made as I have lived and worked in busy New York City is that most of happiness is about leapfrogging the proverbial Joneses. If I received a colander, that's cool, but it is three times cooler if I am the only person out there who received a colander. You can see a lot of this logic at play in the wine world these days: it is fine if I am drinking something, but really great if I am drinking something that most people would never be able to drink, ever. And if my consuming that bottle would mean that it would then be even more difficult for someone to find one in the future. Get my drift? Unique and rare is kind of the whole deal.
So I decided to ask around a bit. Who was or was not receiving colanders? I wanted to know, because it is important to me be seen talking with the right people. I want to make sure that I am in the right set, and held at the correct social level. I decided that I would inquire of people that are recognized in our society as being particularly successful. Powerful and esteemed people. Did they receive doormats in the mail? Or was I special in this new situation? I decided that since I have worked at many fine restaurants in this country, that it would make sense to first contact some of those people who I have, as the phrase goes, "taken care of." These are successful people who have achieved where others haven't. They are people who have made it, and who know about happiness. They are eating at expensive restaurants. These are the people I wanted to hear from about this. What was their doormat situation?
I decided to begin with Mariah Carey. I served Mariah a bottle of DP several years ago. Back when people still bought records, Mariah sold 200 million of them, and she is regarded as one of the most successful female pop artists of all time. She also has a five octave vocal range, a large butterfly tattoo, and a radiant smile. Mariah is the sort of person I feel like I have a lot in common with. Also, she has performed some of the songs that have meant the very most to me in my life, such as Lullaby, Fly Like a Bird, and Dream Lover. But are we so similar? I wanted to find out. Luckily, Mariah was able to take some time out of her busy day for a few questions.
Levi with an i: So Mariah, thank you so much for agreeing to speak with me about this, it is really great to see you again.
Mariah Carey: <smiles>
Lwai: So tell me Mariah, have you ever had a situation where your doormat was stolen?
MC: Yes, I wrote a song about it.
Lwai: What?? You wrote a song about it? About your doormat being taken? Really??
MC: Yes, it's called We Belong Together.
Lwai: Wait, one moment, are you saying that We Belong Together, one of the most successful pop singles of all time, a song that won multiple Grammy's and that is one of the biggest hits of your career, was about your floor mat?
MC: Well yes, it is about the relationship we had together.
Lwai: Wait, I'm sorry, do you even mention your doormat in the song? I mean, where?
MC: I say "boo". It was a Halloween themed doormat. There was a pumpkin pictured on it.
Lwai: Oh, well, that makes sense then. But why wasn't the doormat in the music video? I mean Eric Roberts was in there. It seems like you could have gotten some kind of doormat in there as well, no? Was it a budget issue?
MC: I wanted to, but my producers thought it was too much for American audiences to handle, like it would be just too much. So we put Wentworth [edited to add, she means actor and model Wentworth Miller] in the video instead, as a sort of stand in.
Lwai: Wow, I mean, did you have any regrets about that decision?
MC: All the time. It was the biggest mistake of my career. People always say it was my movie Glitter, but they just don't know anything about it. There was a lot of pain. People don't know about the connection that develops with small foot rugs.
Lwai: I can understand that. I really can. It's so sad. In the song you talk about losing a piece of yourself when your doormat was taken, and about lying by yourself because it is not lying there anymore. Is that how you still feel? I mean, has anything changed in the years since you originally released that song?
MC: If anything it has gotten worse. That mat was my angel.
Lwai: So let me ask you, did you find your doormat again?
MC: No, it never came back to me. It's been...well, sometimes it's been rough. But I try to tell myself that I have to shake it off. That's how I've always felt about the doormat.
Lwai: That must be very hard. But maybe someone has sent you a new doormat as a replacement? Has that happened? Have you received a new floor mat in the mail?
MC: No, I don't think that kind of thing can happen in this world. That would be too special, I think.
Lwai: Thank you, Mariah. Thank you, very much.