The Written Word, Analyzing Albert

Analyzing Albert (cont.)

0 Comments 09 October 2011

There was an old man. He wore the same shit brown colored slacks that were two sizes too small and two inches too short. He always had his T-shirt tucked into his boxer shorts and not his pants. When he was slunk over his old undees would caress the bottom of his belly like a turtleneck hugs your neck as it approaches your chin. I watched the old man sit at the same seat every day and watch the grey suit girl. My grey suit girl. I used to wonder what he was thinking about. Maybe she reminded him of some daughter that disowned him years ago and he thought about all the decisions he would take back if he could. Or maybe she bared a striking resemblance to his wife when they were young forcing him to reminisce about the romantic times of a young couple starting their lives. Or maybe he just figured she had a nice ass and was pissed her pants were so loose.


I would go to the store, wait on the same early morning drunks, stock the same shelves with bargain priced Vodka and cheap 100 proof Gin, and then come home.  Everyday.  6 days a week.  And I started to dread the sunshine. It was the routine that wore me down. I began saving the grease from cooked food in a coffee can near my kitchen sink.


I was sick of the routine, sick of the grind.  I had been saving the congealed fat for months.  I didn’t call in, I didn’t tell anyone I wasn’t going to show up.  Before I went to bed one night, I smeared the windows in my apartment in the collected animal fat and thus blocked the blinding rays of my mornings past.  I slept until the late afternoon, and thus began my new life:  devoid of routine, escaped from all reality except those I choose to create.


I lay in bed for days, thinking about who I would want to be if I could chose to be anyone for a day.  I realized there was no one I could choose.  There was no one person who I aspired to be, or even wished to emulate.  But I hated being myself even more.


I went to the café early in the morning on the third day after I decided to leave the liquor mongering to someone else.  I ordered a regular coffee and the girl behind the counter gave it to me.  I instantly hated her. I sipped, scanned and spotted a friendly face.  It was then the grey suit girl coming out with her paper and dropping it on the ground while she hailed a cab.  I picked it up for her and asked where she was headed.  She had no idea I had started off my mornings with her for quite some time.  She gave me a little smile and replied “[Kennedy],” and then she was gone, disappearing into the yellow cab.


The airport.  Why not?



First time at the Airport


I stood there glossy eyed and terrified watching these dark, blank boxes of my immediate future roll by none the wiser. A baggage claim right after a flight comes in is the perfect microcosm of society. The grind I guess you could say. As soon as the first suitcase pokes its nose through the dangling pieces of rubber the struggle begins.


And their off!


Hemming and hawing, elbowing, adjusting their feet, boxing out looking around trying to find a better spot to stand. Imagine trying to do all this while struggling to be nonchalant. These viscous bastards will do anything for an edge.


Then it happens. Someone gets their bag before you do and the doubt creeps in like a lazy cloudy day. Did that miserable bitch at the check-in counter put the right baggage ticket on my suitcase? Is she trying to get back at me for not saying ‘thank you’? This would only happen to me! Someone else just got their bag.


As this process proceeds the ugly under belly of human nature starts to rear its repulsive little head and stick its tongue out. I can see it in their eyes. Nobody wants to wait for their turn. It’s the product of the ‘now’ mentality spawned by the digital age. If they got theirs why can’t I get mine? Why can’t I be in front? Maybe mine went by and I couldn’t see it because of the back of your fat, hideous head. It happens millions of times a day.


Right when the smoke is coming out of your ears and you want to slap the fat Oklahoman next to you just because he’s there and seems relatively happy the breakthrough happens. The clouds part, the sun shines, and the hand of the Lord guides your bag around the conveyor. You try to smile as politely as possible while pushing women and children out of the way. You’re edging your way to the front and you’re almost there. Then the worst happens. There’s an incredibly fat woman with two toddlers dangling off both hips like warts with 3 additional little pint-size horsemen of the apocalypse whizzing around, blocking your way. Based on my experience 80% of the general population jockey around this menace to grab their bag, the other 20% have no problem with planting that kid’s face directly into the cold, hard metal just so they don’t have to move 2 feet to the right to grab their bags. I think I like these people best. The ends justify the means no? And those friggin kids are going to have to learn that lesson at some point.


Then the connection happens. You have your bags and all is right with the world again. You can now turn and leave the misery behind you. You no longer have to be part of the rat race. No longer just a number. And you’re one of the lucky ones. Some people are stuck waiting at a bus stop for a bus that never comes. And that’s where I come in.

- who has written 512 posts on The Shade.

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