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Archive for the ‘Happenings’ Category

I was waiting to turn right at a light. In the left lane, I see someone shaking a piece of paper. I look over at the movement and see it is a little boy, shaking what looks like a map. As I am about to look away, the kid looks up and sees me.

His face LIGHTS. UP. I can now also tell that he has Down Syndrome.

He waves, still grinning. I smile, because I can’t help it, and wave back. I figure the moment is over. He starts bobbing. Turns out, he is rolling down the window. He now throws an entire arm out the window, smiling and waving. I laugh and wave back.

Admittedly, it got a bit awkward since the light was so long and I’m not sure how the kid’s driver/guardian felt about it and I didn’t want to overstep any bounds.

But it was a nice moment to carry me through.

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Stop Outlier-ing My Thigh

I got on the most crowded metro train I’ve been on yet (no big feat considering how rarely I am commuting during non-off hours). No one could read the things they had brought because there was barely even room to lift your arms to hold on to the rails.

The doors keep being unable to close. We get ‘announced’ at by the conductor. I feel like I am in grade school, but with less room and less of a future. A man in our car next to the door says something or other that signals to all the riders within earshot both (i) his solidarity in our desperation and frustration and (ii) that he is not the one stopping us from leaving the platform. Finally, doors close. I let out an overly young-sounding “yay!”, but life is for the living, eh? And rush hour home is for letting your mind rest a bit.

The man standing directly (verydirectly, spacepurposelyleftout) behind me makes some small talk. Little-girl-voice “yay”s may be a signal to others that you are an okay person to stranger-talk to. This is a guess. I am normally okay with stranger-talking, but it is to awkward in a city like this, in a situation like that, to encourage real conversation.

He was carrying Gladwell’s “Outliers”, which had spent the past ten minutes stuck in my thigh, despite our best efforts. I finally scored a seat. Before he got off at his stop, there was clearly awkward, do we say ‘goodbye’ attempts at eye contact possibly but maybe not and so look a little to the side but still in the general area aaaaand you know how it goes. I think it ended with someone walking through the line of sight when it might have happened.

Anyway, I will never be able to read that book without remembering this.

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The Thanksgiving Grinch

Thanksgiving is this week and I am excited. Time off after this rough start to work and ThisCity-life will be very welcome. This is a big reason. But it is not the only one.

I am going to my boyfriend’s parents’ house for Thanksgiving this week. First time meeting them, so potentially a little nervous-making, but mostly exciting. Because I am sure they are rockin’ folks, but I am also told they have bookshelves full of family photo albums. RESULT!

Granted, I cannot sit there devouring family photos instead of talking with the actual family. Neither can I go for the baby photos and leave with their albums, even if I do have a hatchback now. (That would make the best impression ever.) Even if I took the albums, though, they would still have their memories – plus a new one … of the girl who stole their memories, like a Thanksgiving Grinch.*

Let’s not forget that being grateful is also way awesome. One of my favorite activities is writing thank you notes; I am all about this holiday.

*HT@Albinistic.

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A number of small, lovely items from a few weeks ago:

1) Back to the crackling warmth, facing out over the Eastern seaboard with my friend on my right. I see our bonfire shadows on fog. It’s so thick and gray, it’s a staggered, deep, misty canvas. I flap my arms like a bird. Not a graceful bird or a majestic bird. More like a turkey or a flustered, overweight penguin. My friend sees that I’m flapping and smiling. He starts to ask what I’m doing, but before he finished his question, he’s looked up and realized. He begins to do a macro-Vogue, full- and half-arms framing a torso rather than hands around face. We’re warm and we’re flailing and we are simultaneously become shadow puppets and puppeteers.

2) Squelching boots in red mud, I assume. It’s too dark to tell and we have to leave the warm, well-lit farm house, but there’s no reason to think it’s not the same red mud we slogged up through. Friend is holding a big black umbrella against a big black night sky. New moon. I hold a plastic superhero-paneled bowl holding leftovers of probably the best chicken salad-type dish that has been brought to a potluck, but maybe Friend holds it. Somehow, I light our way with two miniature plastic flashlights  supplied by the farm house denizens, considerate. Also, pink and blue on rainbow-colored lanyards, like twinned but independent headlights as we two walk on our four feet back to the car in the dark.

3) I reach up my arms and stretch out my fingers and they touch the ceiling. I am wearing only moderate boots. I am giddy. My arms come down so I can clap in reactionary glee. It is as happy as when I saw the fried chicken for eating.

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It did not start out a special day, but sometimes a day makes itself special in many small ways and you just have to round up.

The weather was lovely.

I ran into this kid I basically run into once every year, somehow – except for the first year when we had computer science together.

The Whole Foods folks were offering a happy lunch special that involved chicken and donating and frugality. Unfortunately, I’ve given up meat for Lent(ish). But – but! – despite the greatness of the temptation, the guy offering the chicken sandwiches did not appear to me as Satan-y. And I did not take it.

The Whole Foods guy actually seeing me yesterday. I do not remember him, but I will in future.

Today is Chuck Norris’ birthday.

Love,

Joyce

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Alternatively, “Hope deferred makes the heart sick. Also, for some, the mind, too.”

K: oh, and [my roommate] got a shiba inu puppy

J: WHY IS EVERYTHING IN YOUR LIFE THE STUFF I WANT IN MINE?

K: dude.  lol.  i was hoping you wouldn’t react that way.

J: hahahha

J: sorry

K: but it was so funny bc i hadn’t ever told him you wanted a shiba

K: and he’s like, “OMG LOOK AT THE PUPPY WE’RE GOING TO GET!”

K: and i asked him what kind that was… and when he told me i was like, ‘why does that sound so familiar?!’

K: inner conflict:  do i tell joyce?!

K: if i do, she’ll be excited but hate me.  if i don’t she’ll be mad i didn’t tell her!

__

 

She says it makes the weirdest little noises. I know! That’s another reason I wanted one – b/c I make the weirdest little noises. I wanted the dog-version of me, so we’d get along. *le sigh*

 

But hooray for puppy pictures in future!

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And soul. And classic R&B and pop.

They have been listening to an awesome hit parade type playlist (“Respect” – Aretha, Sam Cooke, various Diana Ross and the Supremes, some of the Temptations) and now it’s Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On?”

Someone just yelled “sing it!” and they are singing it.

The mother began singing along.

A son, deadpan: “Wow, Mom. Impressive.”

The mother: “Don’t be hatin’.”

There is now clapping.

God, this is amazing. I sort of want to go bake muffins right now and rush up there with them.

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