Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Back to reality

Well, it was a great few days of down time, but these back-to-reality days sometimes don't make it seem worth it. I'd say the first day after the Labor Day weekend, which signals the unofficial end of summer, start of the school year, etc., is the second worst standing date on each calendar. The absolute worst day would have to be the first day back after the New Year's break, because the holiday break is really long, and after that it's nothing but a wasteland of meaningless winter drudgery until St. Paddy's and March Madness come and save the day. Heading up the medal winners is Valentine's Day, which makes me sick even though I have a wife. I hate that day, too. Other than that, I think the calendar's pretty solid.

Anyway, this has been a particularly brutal back-to-reality day today. First of all, because it's pouring rain. My commute consists of about two miles of walking (one way) so when it's pouring rain, I am pretty much, how do you say, fucked. I am totally soaked right now. I have one of those little portable umbrellas, but when it's really coming down, I might as well be holding a wad of toilet paper over my head.

Secondly, my fellow commuters and I were harrassed by a crazy homeless woman on the train. Now, I don't want to tell the homeless beggars how to run their operations, but maybe the first day back to work after a long holiday that signals the end of most people's favorite season, early in the morning, on a very rainy day, is not the best moment to catch people at the high point of their altruism. But the lady was undeterred. And by "undeterred," I mean "agitated to that special way that only crazy people can reach."

She started out calmly enough. She tapped the sleeping woman in the seat next to me. "Miss?" she quietly implored. "Miss? I'm hungry. And I'm pregnant. I need some mooooooney. Do you have any mooooney?" Now awake and rather frightened, the girl got up and moved away. The woman moved to the next row. Oddly enough, she only approached other women. I don't know for sure whether she was pregnant, but she did smell like dirty diapers. So, you know, maybe that's something.

But as she went down to the end of the car and back, she grew progressively louder and more aggressive. "My baby gonna die without food!" she told the next woman. "How you ain't gonna help me out? That's just crazy!" Funny, I was thinking the same thing.

With her temper rising, by the time she got back to my end I expected her to be green and shouting incoherently. I was half right. "Baby daddy's a woman beater!" she yelled. And now I want someone to beat on! You girls all so pretty now!" she said. "But wait until I fuck you up! You won't be so pretty after that!" She then started stomping her feet menacingly in the general direction of some women nearby her. That was when I put my book in my bag and started clenching and unclenching my fists. She noticed and looked at me for a second (I made no eye contact) and then she moved away. So let that be a lesson to the rest of you crazy homeless pregnant women out there. Mess around with me, and your ass will get rolled on. That's just how I play it, bitches.

So she moved back to the other end of the car, where there was a tousle of wrinkling newspaper, and some shouting, some cursing, and then the woman leaving the train at the next stop. I could see her on the platform, still cursing and stamping and huffing. And that was my morning. Oh, except for the other mile I then had to walk from the train station to my office, in the aforementioned downpour. That was like the cherry on the sundae.

Anyway, back to reality! It's good to be here. Fuck.

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