Saturday, January 29, 2011


I think there's too much emphasis on the skills people pick up living in the country. People can wax rhapsodic about country manners, foraging, improvised mechanics and plain old know how- really it's a combination of living in a small pond and poverty being socially acceptable. I am in awe of the sweet skills the city slickers possess.

I was raised in a world of dead reckoning: where you navigate to things by walking at them. The labyrinthine world of curlicue onramps and highways that say they go east but really go northwest and the byzantine public transportation routes are entirely beyond me. I've been dating C for nine years; the most reliable way I have of finding his parents' house is to roll down the window so I can smell the dominant landscaping shrub in their neighborhood. So kudos, small children that have two bus transfers on their way to school; kudos.

As a further note on public transportation; country mice cannot stand up on a bus. While I was touring my eventual alma mater, I somehow ended up on a bus full of people who were of an age that dictated I stand. I gripped the handrail, braced myself, and immediately ate shit. I struggled to my feet only to crash again at the next stop sign. I think an octogenarian eventually gave me her seat.

It's not that I have terrible terrible balance. I have a job that requires intimate knowledge of my center of gravity so I don't fall off cliffs, I have hobbies where poor balance makes said hobbies not fun, and I compulsively walk along curbs like a four-year-old. If I have to prove my maintaining-my-footing-on-a-moving-vehicle chops, I'll have to disclose some time I spent with a truck, a snowy mountain road, and a flattened cardboard box. Which didn't happen, if my mother asks.

I am still distinctly wobbly on public transportation. My comrades in blighted childhood concur; it's hard to stand on a bus or train. We live in fear that we will have to surrender our seat to someone who appears less deft than us. Congratulations, sure-footed commuters.

This brings me to my last point: we do actually fret about the theoretical giving up of our seat. We would never consider not standing up- it's a moral imperative. We're from a world where irking people you meet while running errands is devastating for your social and business life. In the city-thing, it's inevitable. There are too many people in too little space- one tiny error in merging means sixty people are now running late. Also, there are people taking advantage of the social construct. (Imagine me saying that last bit in hushed tones.) Pretty much everyone on the street who makes eye contact with you does not have your best interests at heart. I live in awe of city dwellers- y'all appear cold and heartless, and yet you seem perfectly nice in other situations. I can't even begin to imagine where you get that armor.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Mmmm, steak

There's a Sizzler ad on Hulu right now. The cook takes a tri-tip off a plate, grills it, and returns it to the same plate. All I can think is, "Cross contamination! E. coli! Poison!". Although I am not really the target market, I figure that's a terrible image to have in a commercial.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

My commitment to social media is such that it is the most reliable way to track my past work schedule.