…pissed, preening or perennially pink
Two furry little animals have somehow burrowed into my temples making any thought process impossible.
It’s -20 celsius (0 F.), so it’s not like standing still is any fun.
Noah plays a version of shootout with the other kid who waits at the stop with us. They kick a block of ice at each other and yell triumphantly whenever it gets beyond the other guy.
They sound like the Spanish soccer announcer when his team scored the winning goal of the World Cup.
My two little fuzzy temple squatters swish their tails wiping whatever reaction I might have had.
Rather than think, I watch the usual kids and parents hustling to school and work. Nobody plays on a winter school day morning
Across the street a door opens quickly.
“Hurry, we’re late.”
A minuscule boy jumps out, practically invisible in puffy winter gear, but all a-bristle with urgency. His dad, the same one as every morning, comes out, trailing a half donned coat and the usual half a bagel sticking out of his face.
I wonder if his kid will choose a girlfriend who is always late, having spent his childhood waiting for his dad. He’s hopping up and down, his dad fishes for the keys to lock the door.
“Daaaaddddd!!” The kid is exasperated.I know exactly how he feels.
A trio of chatterers approaches: a young Mother in pink trailing two daughters, maybe twins, with pink coats, toques, backpacks. I wonder how pink their house is. They talk as quickly as they walk. Every morning they swish by (snow pants do that) without a look, a smile, any acknowledgment whatsoever.
Females in training.
“Goooooaaaaaaaaallllll.” Noah whoops it up in a crazy victory dance.
A blind woman, tap tapping with her cane, crosses. She hears the same crazy antics every morning. She smiles at us.
Geez, do you gotta be blind to be aware?
A dad, older, and his daughter appear at the far end of our street. They are of assorted races, clearly a late life adoption. As they approach I hear the dad’s baritone expostulating, pontificating at break-tongue speed. His daughter jogs beside him to keep up.
“They cut their heads off but they had no choice, if they’d let them live in exile there would have been no end of revolutions and civil wars…of course they also killed the wrong people and eventually it descended into the Great Terror where all sorts of horrid crimes occurred in the name of liberty, but that’s what revolutions do, they break stuff but then….”.
They are now out of ear shot so I’ll never know what he thinks revolutions yield.
Every morning, the guy gives his girl a crash course in history on the rush to school. Last week, I heard an interpretation of the Vietnam War and a precis of the Industrial Revolution’s excesses. Always delivered at great speed, volume and passion. The man is clearly an unreformed 60′s liberal who feels that time is running out and he better tell his daughter everything he can before it’s too late.
Should I stop him…tell him it’s already too late?
8:16. The bus is late. The milk of human kindness, curdled during my sleepless night, is now freezing into an ugly shape.
A baby carriage comes hurtling towards us… the bright orange kind made by a brand specializing in modern active parents who do not want to slow down just because they “put down”.
Noah and his buddy don’t see it coming, too busy determining the Sidewalk Hockey Championships. Generally, I would warn them. Instead, I wait. Will there be a collision, will the ‘active mom’ cluck her tongue in reprobation?
Here she comes. Noah winds up for a kick. His friend crouches for the save. Whack! the chunk of ice goes flying, but is blocked by Noah’s adversary who yells in delight, inadvertently saving the orange carriage.
The mom turns to me and smiles. A wild, pleasurable smile. Her baby sitting in the orange tent, also smiles and, and…..waves at me.
They zip by. The bus finally pulls up.
Noah blows me a kiss.
Shit! No matter how I try, I can’t hate everyone this morning.