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Saturday, July 7, 2012

We'll Move Further South, Get Some Goats...

The escalators just inside The City Center weren’t running Tuesday morning.

I didn’t need them, of course, having been walking on my own since the tender age of 11 months, but the sight of the non-escalating escalators gave me pause.

I stop.

Hammer time
.

Since childhood, deserted streets have been my friends. Do I see zombies? I do not. I see freedom. This may shock you, but I’ve got a pretty sturdy little imagination on me and it absolutely loves scenarios like this…

I pause to survey the scene.

It is 6:45 a.m. and this end of the world that we've been hearing so much about has finally happened.

I am, of course, on time for work.

Nonplussed, I move in my usual direction, like a cow leaving the milk barn and heading to pasture, in search of coffee. Eight years I’ve been doing this; and today, things are not only very wrong but very right; and it’s not just the non-escalating stairs.

It is then that I realize that there’s no line at the Starbucks.

Dizzy with pleasure, I walk in like I own the joint. “’Mornin’, Joe,” I say to the coffee dispenser. I help myself to a cup, jauntily throwing a nickel in the tip jar. “There ya go,” I mutter. “Although I’m still unclear as to why I tip you...”

Lawlessly, I cram my pockets full of Splenda packets just because I can.

I take a seat, prop my feet up on the table in front of me. I am making lazy plans to head out to a Winnebago dealership and drive one south when it occurs to me that the escalator has started up...

I shake my head, the daydream ruined, and my eyes focus on the moving stairs. In reality, I have not gotten my coffee yet. There is a man in a blue workman’s style uniform in front of me.

“Mornin’,” Pete says. You can tell it’s Pete because that’s what his shirt says.

“Got the steps moving again, I see,” I say.

He nods, almost bashfully. I smile at him to show him I mean no harm and proceed toward the Starbucks.

And I feel cheated when I see that there’s a line.

32 comments:

Douglas said...

Gee, my end of the world scenarios involve smoldering cars littering the streets, and lots of dead bodies... I almost never think about Starbucks.

Shelly said...

I do enjoy the way your mind works, Pearlie girl~

Pearl said...

Douglas, I question my ability to survive in a truly disasterous situation, so I keep it light. :-)

Shelly, :-) I appreciate that!

Chantel said...

Finding a Starbucks without a line would leave me wondering if I'd kicked it a block ago and was now in heaven...or the rapture had occured and I didn't make the cut.

mybabyjohn/Delores said...

It's the same thing here with Tim Horton's. If you can walk in the store and up to the counter it really must be the end of the world.

esbboston said...

My wife wiLL gladly give you my father-in-law's herd of goats. But she may also stipulate that you take her father off her hands as weLL. There is land, lotza land, to go with the goats and goat herder. I believe half of a city block. But it is in the city of Stinnett TX, which is considered by most non-Stinnettians to be a negative thing. But on the plus side it is the county seat even though it is the smaLLest city in the county. When figuring the smaLLest city I don't include Sanford because it is basicaLLy an infrastructure that supports bait shops for a lake that just barely eXists because New Mexico stole our water. Oh, back to the goats and goatherder, I am not sure how many goats there are but it could get eXciting as the goatherder is in a constant war of words with the city on an almost constant basis. Can you shoot a gun? I am eXpecting the war of words to turn into a standoff Ruby Ridge Waco Twig Davidian style any day now with the ATF, FBI, and City Pound, so hurry.

Joanne said...

That's a sturdy little immagination. Maybe a little too practical. I would have chosen goats, too.

R. Jacob said...

It almost sounds like your very own triangle, Pearl style, coffee, escalator , and the infamous on time for work. Take two beers and call me in the morning!

jenny_o said...

"Lawlessly, I cram my pockets full of Splenda packets just because I can."

One of my most favourite lines, ever :)

Mr. Charleston said...

I just knew this thing was going to end up with you realizing the building is empty because it's July 4th.

Vapid Vixen said...

Awesome! You had me at Stop. Hammertime. :) :)

Crack You Whip said...

There are several great lines in here that I wish I owned! You are superb!

Ms Sparrow said...

Escalators and Starbucks, the necessities of life!

Linda O'Connell said...

We had a county-wide power outage once and let me tell you, the one and only McDonald's that was running on generator power had a bunch of crazies snaked three times around the building.
BTW, I know where that magic escalator button is if you want to know.

vanilla said...

Cow headed for pasture in search of coffee? You do have a sturdy little imagination on you. We love it!

Indigo Roth said...

Hey Pearl! This was t'rific! I'm no stranger to the total-zone-out daydream; they've been caused by lesser things than a broken escalator. Coincidentally, I'm just having a Starbucks. With a home-made lavender cookie. Awesome. Indigo x

Stephen Hayes said...

An end of the world with piping hot lattes? Sounds good, but the special effects people in charge of recreating your vision are going to demand more gore.

Twisted Scottish Bastard said...

I'm glad others have the "end of the world" scanario daydream as well. I'd mostly thought it was my private little oddity.

I remember when I'd forgotten to adjust my alarm clock for daylight saving and drove through the streets of Dundee (Scotland) to work on a Sunday morning at 7am. For 30 glorious minutes, I didn't see anyone else. My daydreams went something like yours, except it wasn't a Starbucks, it was a Pub.

NellieVaughn said...

If you'd like empty streets and an empty Starbucks, it's time you move to my city. Sometimes I feel everyone has moved to Mars, and has left me behind.

Lynn said...

What would you do with those goats?

Lynn said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
NotesFromAbroad said...

We moved farther South.
They have goats here. More horses and cattle though. and gauchos.
The streets are never empty and there are Starbucks everywhere serving crap coffee while the old cafes serve the best coffee in the world.
Come visit. Bring the cats if you like.

Buttons said...

Go North dear Pearl go North. B

SparkleFarkle said...

I truly admire the way that your head-cogs mesh. Is it at all audible? It is also admirable that you were already walking by age 11 months. Heck, I bet you didn't even bother to crawl!

Jo said...

I depend upon your imagination...therefore I was not shocked that you have one.

You always make me smile. Thank you!

River said...

Just how far South do you mean? Australia? Because I have to warn you, here in Adelaide there is no Starbucks. They came, they failed, they moved on. I can't speak for other Australian cities, but here in Adelaide you'll have to be happy with Hudson's. And Gloria Jeans. Both of which make excellent hot chocolate. There isn't much of a line up at either one, so you'll be served fairly quickly.

ThreeOldKeys said...

A few decades ago, I was with a gaggle of friends in a mall, when we were stranded on an escalator ... the power went out when we were halfway down!

We were only 19 ... so young to be facing such an event. There we stood, stunned and helpless.

I'm proud to say we managed to stay calm as we waited for assistance. Well, not so much calm as loud and hilarious.

The mall security guards were not amused. But they were all old ... at least 30. Apparently elderly people don't appreciate Funny.

Eva Gallant said...

I've been reading this blog for two or three years and had no idea you had "a sturdy little imagination on you." lol

David Macaulay said...

It's kind of en vogue to move south and get goats - I know a few people who have done so, Tennessee, mainly

Raymond Alexander Kukkee said...

Go north, Pearl, to Canada. North of Duluth. We're not worried about the end of the earth here, we're it already. The end of the earth R US. We even have goats, don't let anyone get your goat. ":))

Laoch of Chicago said...

At least you would have splenda.

Pat said...

It always seems strange to me that people can find time to visit Starbucks or wherever on the way to work rather than after.
It has a great relaxed feel about it.