It being the first nice day of the year where we could go ashore, I took a 2-hour walk through Brooklyn to a bookstore and to get away from the fusty miasma of residual fuel oil that infests the hallways here at HAWSEPIPER's afloat global HQ/house of style. Too bad everyone in Brooklyn had the same idea at the same time. What followed was a 2-hour, 5 mile exercise in patience and misanthropy. I was so happy to pass through the projects on the way back to the dock, because foot traffic mysteriously thins out there and everyone just sits on their stoop and yells to each other instead of getting in my way.
At any rate, I made many little discoveries and had many insights which I will share here presently, starting now.
1) I realized that if someone is going to choke me out with chain smoking AND block me from passing on the sidewalk, it's perfectly OK to step out into the street (checking traffic first), get in front of them and fart enthusiastically, knowing full well it's going to be awful. One of those ones that feels HOT, and you just know it's like an open diaper pail on a summer day behind you. I learned that about myself. I WILL even the odds with my ass if annoyed.
2) I should not be able to smell a European guy's perfume (that shit was way to flowery to be cologne) from across the street.
3) When you're a 5 foot tall man who weighs 95 lbs, do not try to lock eyes with a larger stranger and try to force him to yield and step in the gutter when walking in opposite directions. One, as you discovered, inertia is not in your favor, two, if I move half out of your way and you do not do the same, you are going to bump shoulders with me and three, when you shot across the sidewalk like a watermelon seed squeezed between two fingers, you had it coming, and I said I was sorry.
4). Don't take your toddlers out for walkies on a Brooklyn sidewalk for fuck's sake. Leashes are for dogs. Further, I've seen this a few times here and at home, and it's always mothers with bowl haircuts who look like Moe from the Three Stooges, but with dead eyes.
5). Eastern Europeans are a lot less concerned with skin cancer than we are, apparently. I saw many irregularly-margined raisin-sized moles on people's faces, and they were invariably speaking with slavic accents. Goddamn, someone please donate a tub of Compound W to the Park Slope neighborhood of Brooklyn.
6). I hate, hate, hate being impolite in public. I will take a lot of shit before breaking decorum. Just one of those things about me, I guess. Some environmental group had a LOT of canvassers out today, and they must be holding family members hostage or something, because these guys (male, poorly dressed, hipsters) were persistent. I reserve the right to go from politely un-engageable to politely dismissive to coldly aloof to actively hostile in the face of having my personal space invaded. I actually said "Fuck off, pal" loudly... and then was secretly shamed for having done so. My mom would NOT be proud of the inadvertent public F bomb.