Of busses, fans, Larry, Ralph, tongs, and underwear
So I decided to shop downtown, in part because the 26 bus is air conditioned. I used to love shopping, now I often have the opposite reaction. Here's what shopping with me looks like (which is why no one shops with me):
On the way, I saw a table petitioning to put Ralph Nader on the Washington state ballot. Politics make me tired. I don't have/spend the time to know it all backward and forward, and honestly, I don't believe many people do. Mostly, I think it's just opinion idolatry, and I don't think that's a faithful use of my time.
First stop was Bon-Macy's (dumbest store name ever), on a whim. Ready to rotate some new underwear into the wardrobe, so thought I'd check it out. Mistake. First, I hate department store shopping, especially in upscale stores. I get almost completely overwhelmed when I go inside—they're laid out like a maze, and all the ads depict beautiful rich people, couples, and families enjoying "the good life." That's not me, and that's not my good life. Second, my underwear needs are pretty simple, so a place like The Bon is overkill. I just don't need to be spending that much per pair.
Next was Bed, Bath & Beyond, the true object of my quest. With the weather being insanely hot for Seattle, I wanted to pick up an oscillating pedestal fan. Ended up going with the $30 12" one, yet found myself tempted by $60 retro table fans. I'm weird like that, but at least I can talk myself back to rationality fairly quickly. Killing time inside (remember: air conditioning!) until my return bus, I came across toast tongs which would have saved me the electrocution hazard I risked while trying to retreive my stuck bagel this morning. A bagel slicer or a better toaster would also do the job, but the tongs were $1.99 and easier to carry.
Walking the block to my bus stop, I got multiple compliments on my purchase (not the tongs). 90+ degree temperatures make Seattle into a fan fan club.
On the ride home, I saw an older man striking up friendly but slightly awkward conversation with the woman beside him. Balding and portly, he wore a kind smile and a t-shirt covered in colorful drawings and well wishes from young people. From that, I ascertained that his name was Larry, and that he was likely the candy provider for a camp or somesuch. Or he had taken Larry's shirt. After the woman got off the bus, I got to talk with him for a while. He insisted on sharing with me the mnemonic for the downtown streets of Seattle (Jesus Christ Made Seattle Under Pressure), we said all the streets together twice, he shared another mnemonic for the Great Lakes (HOMES), and then taught me which two lakes don't go into Michigan—Ontario, in the province of same name, and Michigan, because it can't go into itself. He lost me a little on the last one, but maybe I didn't hear him right
Now I'm home, basking in the fruits of my labors (not the tongs). With all the moving and settling, I must confess I'm tired of putting things together, but this was worth it.