Archive for January, 2007
How do you pass the time during a flight? What do you bring in your carry-on?
I always over-pack. I usually bring along two books, an iPod, a Nntendo DS with multiple games, a sheet of sudoku puzzles, notepad and pens…and then, if we're flying on JetBlue, I end up watching the Food Network or HGTV for the entire flight and ignore all of it.
That's not that much in your carry-on, you might say. But you didn't know about the toothbrush and toothpaste, the first aid supplies, the mints, the travel pillow, the spare shirt, the spare underpants (if I'm feeling particularly skittish about my luggage), the earplugs, the bottle of water, the snack, the camera, the umbrella, a file with every piece of information about our trip and the destination I could find. I really wish I could be one of those people who lives out of a single bag or a carry-on bag for a month or two but I'm getting better.
Either that or my arms are getting stronger.
I live near the BART station in the Mission, so I'm (unfortunately) used to seeing (and dodging) the less pleasant parts of city life there; panhandling, the drug trade, the probably-stolen goods for sale sitting on blankets on the street, the slightly insane ramblings. I meet them all with a cold face and a curt "No."
Last night a slightly older white man wearing a cravat came towards me as I was dodging the mostly-illegal flea market on 16th Street. The cravat threw me a little. He held a plastic grocery bag in one hand and a picture frame in the other. He held it out to me as if offering it for sale and I instinctively started to deflect. Then, in a slightly higher register and a lisp, he made his sales pitch. "Judy Garland? Mickey Rooney?" It seemed like he was selling them as Icons, only instead of Jesus and Mary poorly silkscreened with Spanish and English prayers these were black and white photos of the stars of the Andy Hardy movies.
It occurred to me: I've been panhandled before, but I think I had just been gay-handled…