Monday, September 29, 2008

SATURDAY VIGNETTES, INCOHERENT BECAUSE OH MY GOD I AM GETTING A COLD OH MY GOD NO NO NO

I [stupidly] took the Metro to the mall this weekend for the National Book Festival, forgetting in my sleepless stupor and Neil Gaiman-induced fandom that there were excessive train delays on the red line. (Shady Grove is closest to my house.) In these intelligence inhibitors I also forgot about Bike DC and 800 other celebrations in the Mall’s neighborhoods.

MY GOD, THE TOURISTS WERE EVERYWHERE AND NOT ONE OF THEM WERE WILLING TO OBEY THE RULES.

IN WHICH I MAUL AND MOW AN OUT-OF-TOWN FAMILY

I can’t help it; I’m filled with an urge to decimate annoying out-of-towners. These feelings may be genetic, though I’ve never seen the aggression in my family members. Still, it’s always been there these twenty-two years, and I see other DC residents usually feel [and behave] the same way.

This particular family had an absurdly tall father, a flimsy and confused mother, an increasingly bored and underwhelmed grandfather, and an unspecified number of unruly and obnoxious children. Their first offense was standing in the center of Shady Grove Metro station’s main entrance, blocking riders from obtaining fare cards, and inciting a family melee over the excitement of the book festival. They took a long time to get their fare cards, and used multiple machines—and later, turnstiles—to complete the necessary procedures to board the train.

From there the transgressions continued: the eldest daughter bossed the grandfather and children into her Musical Chairs-styled bidding and dragging her grandfather around the car by the sleeve. I would have probably let it go, but I had my ipod, and if I can hear a child whine succinctly over this defeaning rock music, there’s a problem.

At the last station the family recreated their space blunder by standing in front of the turnstiles—one exit per person—and attempting to exit without success. It was a faux confusion, and watching the mother hop from one exit to the next, flirting with the idea that this was a good place to slide her metro card into the slot before deciding, no, maybe this one!, that put me over the edge. She was mid-hop to the next turnstile when I darted in front of her, threw my entire body into hers, yelled, “EXCUSE ME!” and exited. I left my mother in the dust and prayed she wouldn’t let the family waste twenty minutes of our time by going in front of her.

…She didn’t. She did the same thing. Usually she apologizes for rude strangers and makes me wait.

IN WHICH I STARE DOWN A PUPPY

Still satisfied in having defeated a family of tourists I remained confident that our ride home would not accompany too much agony. I was wrong. The platforms were so full that the station was full of people lined on the escalators, hoping to catch a train within this millenium. In retrospect, we should have walked to another station. Trying to add money to my mother’s SmartTrip card I encountered a college freshman (my guess is GWU). That she was probably from out of town did not faze me.

BUT THAT SHE HAD A DOG ON A LEASH WITH HER DID.

I stared in disgust for several minutes—and I like dogs!—before trying to take her photograph…twice. It was as I got her glaring at me under the recognition that I was photographing her for internet-based humiliation that my mother called out my name (A line! Is open! Over here!) and the photo was ruined. Blurry! No internet scorn here, except to admit that I’m immature and I had better not see anyone on the metro with a pet that is not a service animal.

This was a miniature border collie, less than a year old. And that little shit knew it was supposed to be at home.

AND UNRELATED

The Bike DC participants all had big buttons that said I LIKE BIKE (like I LIKE IKE). I really want one. But I doubt my bike will ever get to the District. I am filled with woe.

This week I dedicate my angst to several Metro trips in honor of seeing Stereolab. And maybe I’ll edit that complaint letter into a coherent missive worthy of sending to Metro, because I’m still annoyed about the parking situation. (By the way, 711 has meters in front of its store. They don’t start until 9:30 a.m., so that’s my go-to. Now that I’ve said that Takoma’s residents will have it changed it to 7 a.m. like the others, won’t they?)

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