February '7



(In other words, we need a good neighbor. Who wants to buy?)



The 18 was brutal today. Is everyone trying to get everything done before the snow arrives? Seems like it. (Are we really going to get 12" of snow? It seems that lately the storms have missed the Twin Cities no matter what was predicted.)


As usual, I went to the Chinese buffet on the 17 line yesterday and got a box of food to go. Have I mentioned that they have frog legs? I only ate one, but it was especially large and juicy.

My fortune cookie had this bit of wisdom for me:

Adversity reveals genius, prosperity conceals it.

I didn't think much of it and tossed it in the garbage. Then I drove by a church on Minnetonka Boulevard. Their LED sign said:

Adversity proves friends, prosperity brings them.

So that was kind of odd. In case you're wondering if that was some kind of cosmic message to me that I was going to win the Powerball, the fact that I'm writing this in my house and we're not holed up in a hotel somewhere ought to be enough for you to think otherwise. Maybe it was some other kind of cosmic message.


The other day I was at the northbound bus stop at 66th and Nicollet. It's a cutout, across the parking lot from an auto parts store and a pizza place. I was just about to leave when a young guy ran up. He put his bag on one of the front steps and walked to the other side of the sidewalk. I watched in amazement as he turned his back to the bus (and toward the parking lot), unzipped his fly and whipped it out, ready to take a leak! I yelled at him. "You can't to be serious! C'mon, dude!" His girlfriend, who had just arrived, said very matter of factly, "He has to pee." Yeah, not while I and a whole bus full of people watch! He tucked it back in and squirmed in the back of the bus until he got out.


Yesterday, as I pulled up to 24th and Nicollet, I saw a mid-fortyish guy wandering around in the street and screaming. He staggered to the sidewalk, then back into the street, then back to the sidewalk. I looked around and saw another guy, standing on the opposite sidewalk, observing him and shaking his head. Screaming Guy decided to try to cross the street in front of me but lost his balance in the middle of the street. He bit the dust hard and tried to get up, but was unable to do so. So the observer walked out to him, pulled him up, and dragged him to the sidewalk. I had a green light by then and got out of there as soon as my way was clear.


Nine days without a post and you might think that I'd have more to say. You'd be wrong.



Well, Kassie got a new job, my brother got a new job and I can threaten all I want, but I'm sure that I won't actually be leaving M*tro Tr*nsit any time soon.

I did pick my next work this morning.

3/10/7 - 6/1/7:

Saturday- 8:50 AM - 6:16 PM, 21 line.
Sunday, Monday- off.
Tuesday- 7:12 AM - 9:39 AM, 17 line; 1:09 PM (r) - 7:21 PM, 4 line.
Wednesday- 6:09 AM - 8:31 AM, 24 line.
Thursday- same as Tuesday.
Friday- 6:45 AM - 10:02 AM (r), 17 line; 12:50 PM (r) - 6:24 PM, 23 line.

(r) = relief

It's not too great, but it'll do.

On the plus side, my late night will be 7:21. Right now, I'm getting done at 8:21, 8:22 and 8:29, plus two reasonable days. That hour or so between 7:30 and 8:30 is huge, both logistically and emotionally. Kassie and I try to eat dinner together, and I know 8:30 or 9:00 gets to be quite late for her to be eating. You may have noticed that this is nine-hour work, which is why I have that lovely little short day on Wednesday. I'm already looking forward to that part of my schedule. I'm doing a couple routes, the 23 and 24, that I haven't done for at least a year. Hmm, in fact, I've only done the 24 once or twice, on holidays. Maybe within the year, but not as a regular piece of work. And it's been two picks since I last had to deal with Lake Street (the 21), so I'm actually kind of looking forward to that again. And those splits give me a good time almost daily to keep this mess up-to-date. And get Jeff outside.

On the minus side, IT'S EARLY. Getting up early is a drag. I haven't had such a difficult time with early since I figured out that drinking milk makes me want to vomit, but I still don't like it much. The early times might conflict with Kassie's morning schedule a bit, but if I don't shower until my break, it shouldn't really be a problem. As much as I kind of like the splits, it does kind of suck that I essentially end up with twelve-hour days.



I pick my next work in the morning. I looked over the available work and it didn't look too good. I'm starting to think about looking for something else to do.


Kassie and I are going back to Weight Watchers. We went a couple years ago. It's not too bad at all. Even though I spent last weekend eating and drinking everything I wanted to, tonight I weighed in at the same weight I was two weeks ago.

I really don't enjoy the meetings much. The whole thing gets to be way too touchy-feely for me. I love it when we decide that we're just going to weigh in, then leave. But I sat through a Mylon LeFevre concert once when I was in high school; I can sit through anything. Kassie and I were just telling my parents how the group facilitator is much better this time around. I like her and she has really been pretty normal.

But tonight? Oh my goodness...

I was a little concerned when I saw the portable stereo on the table. Then, as she started talking, I began to get red. I knew I was in trouble. As she told us what she was going to do, I started to cry. For real. I was really scared that I would come off as a real jerk. Ever had to laugh in church and you know you can't? And then someone next to you wants to laugh, too? And if one of you gets going, then you'll both look like jerks? Well, Kassie and I were definitely in that boat.

The scenario: Whitney Houston's "Greatest Love of All" on the cassette. Our facilitator accompanying the tape, signing the lyrics. Not a speck of irony to be found anywhere in the room.

I suppose it's possible that she could come across this post at some point. I would feel bad if she did. But, oh my, was that painful.



We had a good time in Duluth. The folks at Fitger's sure make a tasty beer. Or several. We never left the complex; we didn't need to.


Last night we wished T-Unit a happy birthday at Fabulous Fern's. To do so, we made the trip to St. Paul, stopping only to eat the lunch we packed and for a restroom break. When we finally arrived, we noticed that the folks in St. Paul do things a little differently. The sign at the curb says COMPACT CARS ONLY. The license plate on the compact car on the right says YESLORD.



Today, we took Jeff to the dog park. I guess he has a new boyfriend.



I haven't driven a bus since Friday. I'll go back to work tomorrow.



It's not cold enough here. We're going to Duluth.







January '7