You may have heard about my personal angel.

Augie may lack a bit in heavenly prowess but he’s the only angel who pays attention to me. He usually makes a pathetic entrance, bumping along the ground with his cowboy hat, pudgy body and undersized wings. But today Augie’s all official, and comes toting a special delivery bag strapped across his back.

“Top priority correspondence from on high,” announces Augie, as if his angel status has suddenly been upgraded.

I’m not impressed. How can Augie be a trusted messenger from above when he is so clumsy and sheepish around me? But I decide to play along. “All right. Let’s see what you have.”

Augie dumps his bag into my lap and I’m staring at all of these notes, each one emanating a celestial glow. The notes are from people of my past: my parents Vern and Irene, my brother Eddie, an uptight professor from college, a prickly boss, a sour judge, two ungrateful girlfriends and Mr. Tuttle, the neighbor who could never take a joke.

“Great news,” Augie says, “All of these people have forgiven you for your past shenanigans. They plan to use their ‘Do Not Pass Go’ cards on other seriously unscrupulous candidates heading up to the Pearly Gates. It looks like you’re in, and by the skin of your teeth.”

But I take umbrage at Augie’s remark. “Are you kidding me, Augie? These are the same people who made my life so difficult! You’ve heard me blame my parents for most of my problems. Not to mention my brother Eddie, who would always set me up for trouble.” I start digging through the rest of Augie’s forgiveness notes. Every one of them is from someone who should be begging forgiveness from me.

I stand up and toss the notes in Augie’s face. “And you,” I say. “Even when it comes to getting an angel, who am I stuck with? Someone who can barely fly and gets outwitted by all the people from my past.”

I can tell I’m getting to Augie. His head is down and he’s mumbling something.

“Speak up Augie! What do you have to say to me now?”

Augie says, with just a hint of frustration, “You make it so doggone difficult, but my boss instructed me to forgive you too.”