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August 12th, 2009

~Wednesday~ This morning we had a "Piggy Banker" board the bus at one stop. This is the person who pays their fare with a gazillion coins. One after another after another—that interminable clanging as the coins drop down the long, cylindrical chamber of the fare machine, and the people behind them waiting to get on the bus shift from one leg to the other, roll their eyes, and huff and puff. Life's hard.

An African-American lady, mid-30s (maybe early 40s), bright white calf-length pants, a very bright pumpkin orange blouse, and vibrant yellow-framed sunglasses sat in Swapping Dollar's seat this morning—and like her seat's predecessor—chatting with the bus driver most of the ride. Lo and behold another passenger this morning tried to pay her fare with an uncooperative dollar bill. Once again, the bus driver tried it a couple of times to no avail, but at least today she tried it before driving off. Suddenly, Jackie O' Lantern got up and took over, eventually getting it to take.

At a subsequent stop, a young man got on and as he quickly passed my seat to continue toward the back of the bus, he wafted a wake of ashtray aroma. Ironically, he was wearing a t-shirt advertising East Village, which is the restaurant/bar at which I had lunch a few months back, and commented afterwards, "I'll not be going back there, as it's one of the few places left that still allows smoking in the dining area."

Incidentally, Lowers got on at this stop, too. He was on the bus home yesterday, although I didn't give him any air time. Still no top teeth.

We had a "ghost stop" near the end of my ride—someone accidentally pulled the stop cord for the stop before the one they actually wanted to get off at, and then didn't cop to it. When the driver stopped there, she glared into the rear view mirror at the open rear door accommodating an absence of humanity.

If that didn't perturb her enough, someone (presumably the same person) pulled the stop cord way too close to the next stop. "You want this stop? I need time to stop," she yelled into the mirror. I half expected her to go off à la Hillary with something like, "I am not going to be channeling my passengers..."



By the elevator in my building there is a kiosk, which is actually a computer that can be used to access NC State's computer system, and which when the screensaver is active (which is most of the time) rotates through various advertisements and announcements.

There's one advertisement that always catches me off guard. It's for the Digital Media Lab on campus, and what gets me is that there is this guy in it, sitting at a computer in the lab, and I always think these three thoughts in succession:

  1. Hey, that's me!

  2. Wait, that guy's half my age.

  3. Oh yeah, and he wears a medium shirt, while I wear an extra-large.
This guy looks like me only in that the back of his head shows instead of his face, his hair is short and cut just like mine, and he has on this white t-shirt with a light blue design on it that looks like one I have. Well, actually, I have five of those t-shirts. I got them for free when I worked in IBM's RTP Career Center, they're all over 12 years old, and I pretty much only wear them around the house and to the gym.



I had another very productive work day, and the afternoon in particular just flew by, as I was doing work that I love—devising website content and organizing information.

The 6:00 bus ride home was uneventful, and I had such a headache when I got home, that I took an hour nap before dancing. I rarely get headaches. In fact, I can't remember the last time I had one. Gratefully, this one was gone when I woke up.



Dancing was fun tonight, although there wasn't a lesson tonight, because Carl had "worked 28 hours in the last two days." I felt bad for the people who were there to take the lesson, as I remember myself being in that same boat over five years ago, and being frustrated with there was no lesson for no apparent reason.

I two-stepped with Joe T., Geromy, Rob, (Walter's) Steve, and of course Bill for our standard two-step to the country version of Irreplaceable.

I also had a very nice shadow dance with Steve, and he did very well for never having done a shadow dance, and being the lead at that.



I stopped at the grocery store on the way home, and when I got to the cashier, a young, cute, African-American girl, she was thanking the person ahead of me in line for wishing her a happy birthday.

"It's your birthday today?" I asked with a smile.

"Well, in 30 minutes," she said.

"21, by chance?" I asked.

"Yes!" she squealed in delight.

"High fives, girl," I said with my palm out.

She hit me back, and I left her smiling—ending my night with an affirmation paid forward.

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