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Suburban Island

A Week in Summation
Saturday, May. 01, 2004, 11:47 a.m.

QUESTION: Do I get extra credit for this stuff?

WHAT I LEARNED: Better a taxi than an extended hike.

As I stand perched at the end of the week and look back over my shoulder, I ponder the path I have trod over the last 5 days and consider the interesting things I have seen and heard. Life in our own little corner of the world can be as exotic, as interesting, and as full of the unexpected as a trip halfway across the world.

For instance, Iíve discovered I have some amazing talents, such as hailing taxicabs while doubling as a beast of burden. I can hail a cab while carrying a heavy purse, 2 large carry-alls, and a tiny piece of paper with an address scrawled on it, in less than three changes of a light without sustaining any permanent physical injury or losing that extremely important tiny scrape of paper with the nearly illegible address inscribed upon it. Actually, I caught plenty of taxis in the last 14 days in just this set of circumstances. Itís like Groundhog Day without the romance or Tru Calling without Matt Perry. I took 14 taxicab rides this week and 14 taxicab rides last week. This seems like a strange convergence of numbers. I hope it stops. I will need to check into the local hospital for bed rest if I have to take 14 taxicab rides next week or perhaps I should revel in my taxicab-induced exhaustion and apply to major networks for a possible reality series run. It could work.

Taxicab rides are cosmopolitan experiences too. Diversity is the middle name of transportation in my town. I find it fascinating Ė for example Ė that my Indian cab driver has selected Way Down Upon the Swanee River as the ringer of choice on his cell phone. The fact that I can enjoy Dinah Washington singing a smooth and sultry number, listen to Rush Limbaugh adamantly make his point, wallow in a monotone National Public Radio broadcast, and endure a call-in show hosted by a local university that the driver insists upon turning up every time I talk to my companion in the cab so that any communication between us is virtually impossible, are all part of the audio alternate reality that cab rides provide.

And then thereís eBay. My son has discovered eBay in a new way. Not in the old way where he was my lucky charm and sat with my while I bid on something I wished to purchase. No. Itís not like that anymore, momma. This isnít your motherís eBay.

In the last month I have purchased things that I didnít even know existed. For instance a few weeks ago, I won two auctions back-to-back. One was for an 18-inch 5-Spoke Sancro Chrome Rim and one was for 17-inch 16-Spoke Chrome Rim with Gold Plated Center Cap. Evidently there are decorating musts for the discerning young gentleman. A butane lighter in the shape of a toilet was soon requested. It wasnít too much later that I found myself clicking the BUY NOW option for a set of 4 Shocking Lighters Ė WHAT A GAG - zap em good. Itís a set of six wacky lighters you can leave anywhere and then double up with laughter when a hapless soul gives them a flick. Ouch. Hey, I just buy the stuff.

After a long absence the fox family is also back in town. Yes, the foxes have come back to play in our neck of the woods and this year the fox family is comprised of 4 bouncing babies instead of the 2 we saw last year. That two, two, two times the fun. Itís like seeing double. We have little red foxes setting off every motion sensor light in the cul-de-sac. Itís some good fun and there are no premium cable fees to pay for enjoying this up close nature special. It makes the neighborhood dogs bark but it keeps the kids quiet. Observing wildlife is a hushed operation.

This week, I have also accepted that a mature woman has a right to complain about her carís air-conditioner being on the fritz until her husband responds to the repair request because sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic wearing a business suit, stockings, and high heels with her hair flying around in super-heated air no longer results in her looking hot and sultry when she slips out of her car but rather faded and frazzled when she staggers from behind the wheel.

I have also learned that you can think that you will spend Friday night kicking back and catching up on your diary reads and find yourself spending hours running maintenance operations on your computer and having long conversations with computer technicians instead, when your computer keeps shutting down every time you access the internet. Who would have thought wrestling against unseen evils would have to be integrated into my week?

image by Suburban Island

Perhaps the strangest thing I have learned this week is that contrary to what one might suspect, I have found out that even moms can enjoy a Pimp My Ride marathon, although they insist vehemently that such an outcome would be an impossibility.

And now on to the weekend.

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