gall and gumption

Friday, September 15, 2006

...and good morning to you too, fatso

This morning I was walking to the back of the longish queue for the train from Germantown. Most of the people who take the train are regulars (one way I'm sure I've gotten on the right train at Union Station is I look for familiar faces. There are only two or three people on my train that I speak to. A woman I met on the first day I ever took the train, and a couple days ago this Chinese woman with a Chinese Bible just started chatting with me. Other than that, no one. So this morning as I'm walking to the end of the queue this woman with whom I have never exchanged even the words "Hello dog," gave me the once-over and said to me, "Casual day, huh?"

Of course I did everything you are not supposed to do: I immediately glanced down at what I was wearing and it did seem to me that the shirt (which is about seven years old) was looking particularly disreputable. I had changed into it after I noticed that the first shirt I put on this morning had a big grease stain front and center. And then I did worse, I blushed. I tried to explain (didn't mention the grease stain, probably just as well.) The title to this post is one of those things you think up hours later when it is of no earthly use.


At 8:15 PM, Anonymous leslie said...

What is wrong with people? Obviously, she did not have a mother ("If you don't have anything nice to say...").

At 10:54 PM, Blogger Kia said...

You know, I don't think she meant to be mean. I think it just came out wrong and then I kind of heard it wrong. And she realized what had happened somehow. I think she thought she was being friendly.

But you know, I ride that train every day and I get curious about what people are reading, the same people I see every day. Especially, for example, if I see someone reading a book that doesn't look like they picked it up at a newsstand. Like if they are reading an old book. But I am too reserved to ask what they are reading -- don't want to intrude. (One man on the train once snatched a book from me to see what I was reading.) So to find myself the object of such a personal observation, totally without preparation, was startling. Especially because the jeans I was wearing look like hand-me-downs and the shirt really needs to be given over to just for painting and dogwalks.

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