First – my trip to NYC got changed to Boston, then changed back to NYC, then canceled, then postponed until early september and moved to Phoenix. So no travel this week. I’m happy either way.
Second – I traded my Honda for the mother-in-law-in-a-rowboat’s SUV to make tonight’s “clear out the old house” project more efficient. I start it up today and the gas light chimes on. Wonderful. It’s starting to rain and I’m already out of gas. The mother-in-law just commented about putting $90 into it the other day, so I was thrilled with the idea of 1) having to spend $90 of my own cash and 2) driving such a ridiculously inefficient vehicle.
I pull off into a covered gas station. The rain was starting to blow sideways and slantways and slideways and cantways, so I was instantly getting crapped on. Started the pump and jumped back in the truck. Click. What? Can’t be full. I spring back into the gale and start the pump again. Click. Hmmm. I spend a few more minutes trying to articulate the nozzle in a way that doesn’t trigger the auto shut off…to no avail. When the gas is slurping back up into the gas cap cavity and running onto the ground, I believe it is full. Three dollars of fullness. And a broken gas gauge.
I finally get into the office only to suffer multiple people saying, “Hey Michael, it’s called an umbrella.” Next person to say that will be punched in the neck.
Wednesday retread: This was written in 2005, back when I lived in Jersey. Today’s gas story reminded me of it.
8.25.2005 – It’s with a frightening regularity that my wife accuses me of being evil: being able to boil holy water, angering god, no heart, etc. It has caused me to be more cognizant of situations where I might be fitting this accusation all too well.
This morning, at the Mobil on the Parkway (have to fill up today, prices change on Fridays), I’m parked next to a passenger van. The driver is wearing a yarmulke. So is the passenger. So are all the passengers. A few in the window were reading what I can only assume to be the Torah, since I don’t read hebrew up close, let alone from fifteen feet. They might have been reading erotic bondage stories written in hebrew for all I know; I’m just the goyem. Regardless, it was something solemn.
Where does this involve me? Seeing these people using their commute time to read, pray, and reflect made me take a look at myself. After all, the driver and a few others were looking at me. I had the windows open, eating my frosted strawberry pop-tarts (now with more heathen), sunglasses on, shirt wrinkled and untucked, and the stereo pumping out Eric Clapton’s “Cocaine” at 7:45 in the morning. I’m a grade-A cultural ambassador. Does anyone know the hebrew word for godless sinner? Hey, if the cloven hoof fits…
*I have never tried cocaine, nor do I endorse the psychotic lifestyle that goes with it.