Ladies and gentlemen, inboards and outboards, having made it to the end of another fabulously fulfilling week, we find ourselves subjected, once more, to my benighted ideas regarding clairvoyance.
Do I mean these things? Do I honestly believe that my iPod, set on shuffle, delivers the tools necessary to divine the weekend’s properties?
Sure! Why not!
Black Math by White Stripes
Jesus Left Chicago by ZZ Top
Never Been to Spain by Three Dog Night
Can I Get Get Get by Junior Senior
Shotgun by Southern Culture on the Skids
Mississippi Queen by Mountain
Go Down Gamblin’ by Blood Sweat and Tears
Hmm. Outside of that first song, it feels very 70s to me. Close your eyes, won’t you? We’re sitting around a fire started in the woods somewhere. The cute guy with the pickup will be bringing a keg soon.
Maybe later, we can go rollerskating.
Tell your mom you’re staying at my house, I’ll tell my mom I’m staying at your house, and we’ll sit in the woods all night.
You know, say what you will about my many attributes – both real and imagined! – but I have quite the sense of smell. It’s true! Whether whiffing the insouciant tones of the lunch-hour drinker or dodging the nasal-passage charge of the overly perfumed, I can trust my nose.
If I were to become, somehow, a superhero, I would want a cape for my nose.
A black one. Velvet. Maybe a large gold “P” embroidered on the back, perhaps with tassels and a GPS.
I’m just thinking out loud. We can work out the details later.
But back to stinking.
I was in the elevator yesterday, mindlessly riding, as I do every Friday, from the ground floor to the 47th and back again in a feeble attempt to outrun my work load when it filled, on the ground floor, with returning smokers.
Returning smokers. The words italicize themselves, don’t they.
And that got me thinking.
When I first started working full time, I shared a cubicle with a woman who smoked. At her desk. It’s perfectly true, kids. You could smoke at your desk.
I was at this particular place of employment when the great influx of Hmong first came to Minnesota. “Boat People” we called them. They were hired by the dozens: they worked lousy jobs cheaply, never complaining, for as many hours as you needed them.
They also warmed up some really weird stuff in the microwave, things that did not sit well with my cube-mate.
“Smells like fish heads,” she’d say, wrinkling her nose.
“I think it is fish heads,” I’d say. “Fish heads and dandelions.”
To be honest, a quick look in the lunchroom while lunch was being warmed up showed that it was, indeed, fish heads and greens, possibly of the lawn variety, floating in a broth of some sort.
It stunk just as you’d suppose fish head soup would stink.
But it didn’t stink any more than the lit cigarette that smoldered at her desk all day.
We don’t smoke at our desks anymore, and the aromatic strains of fish head soup have gone the way of my dad’s lard-and-salt-and-pepper sandwiches, which, while not nearly as smelly as the soup, served the same purpose: something that cost next to nothing but filled the belly.
Come to think of it, there’s more than one way to stink.