Wednesday, April 09, 2008

I Hate a Low Ceiling

New York City, how I love you. Your friendly denizens, your crazy crumbling public transport, your lovely parks; that last even when they're sluiced by a biting lazy wind and we have to take turns with our one hat.

"This hat looks totally weird on me. People are staring at me and thinking 'Why is that woman wearing that tweed hat?'"
"Nah, they're looking at me and thinking 'Why isn't that woman wearing a tweed hat?'"

Air Canada, I do not love you. I do not love your cancelling of my various flights and rebooking me for later flights that are themselves late and on decrepit planes that need their navigation systems replaced on the runway. Though I thank you for replacing said system before take off, and I have to forgive you for getting Shelley to me a day late, since that was the low ceiling and not your incompetence and aging planes.

I forgive you too, clouds.

We had big plans for thrifting, or at least, I had big plans for us thrifting, and Shelley was happy to go along with me. Maybe it was the thought of a mortgage, I don't know, but I was pretty happy not to spend much money. Some gifts here or there, a nice shirt that will make its debut on my date this Saturday night, a bracelet that fits, which is an odd thing on my stick-like wrists.

We only found one decent thrift store, around the corner from us and by accident. It was staffed by the owner who had another perfect accent, this one entirely Brooklyn. When Shelley and I went up to pay for our finds, the mother/daughter team looking for some kind of fancy dress was just wrapping up their transaction, and asking for directions to other thrift stores. I stopped listening, poking through the stuff on the corner, though I did catch a shocked look on the face of the owner. And caught the response, "No, thanks, I have a physiotherapist."

"What was that?" Shelley asked at the same time as the woman said "Did you hear that?"

"She started out by telling me I had such skinny arms, and that put me at risk for osteoporosis. So okay, but I tell her, 'You know, my family just has skinny arms. I could put on a hundred pounds and I would still have skinny arms. Like my father, my brother. We just have skinny arms, you know?"

She's a tiny slip of a thing. I have skinny arms. Her arms, I could snap like a dry twig. But sure, they're a wiry people.

"But that's not good enough, so then she says, after I tell her all those places to go, she reaches over to me and says 'But your arms, they're so skinny. You might get bone cancer.' Bone cancer! I'm going to get bone cancer! What's she thinking? Bone cancer."

"What did the daughter say?"

"Oh! The daughter! Nothing! But mark my words, that apple didn't fall far from the tree. Just as bad."

A pause while she writes up our bill.

"That'll be 36.95! You have a nice day, 'kay?"

Optimists, I tell you.

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