Monday, April 07, 2008

Beauty and the Alcoholic

If you're looking for Grammar Monday, scroll on down. I just couldn't resist posting a second time because today was full to overflowing with high quality life experiences.

First of all, Jarod took our car to Minneapolis, which means that I do not have a car at my disposal for the week. I am borrowing the extra car that Jack and Mary Liz's family owns in order to transport them to and from school on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, but for my own frivolous errands, I'm on the bus, baby. Aw, yeah. And the bus is already giving me some sugar. Well, if you call having the privilege of sitting next to an alcoholic who wants to chat "sugar," and I do! I so totally do!

By the time we reached 39th and Main, the bus was packed, so random my-age-ish white dude who reeked of stale cigarettes and liquor sat down next to me. I did my usual half smile as in indication that, yes, it was fine with me if he sat down, but I guess he took that to mean that I also wanted to chat it up. He started in on his sad story of how he didn't mean to drink that much yet (it was just past noon) but that somehow he had, and here he was on his way to meet his sponsor, who was not going to be happy about it and would probably send him to detox, and I was midway through my inner eye roll when I realized that I could just dismiss him as a weirdo or I could engage with him and tell it like it is. I must have been channeling my friend Nicole, who just says what she thinks to the alcoholics, hoboes, and ne'er-do-wells that strike up conversations with her, because I just started letting him have it. I told him that if he couldn't control his drinking once he started, then maybe he shouldn't start at all. He told me that I don't know how it is and I shot back that yes, I do know how it is, and the way it is is that he can't handle liquor, that it's ruining his life, so he just needs to set down the bottle. There were a few brief recesses from talk of his alcoholism when he'd say amusing things like "Robert Smith said he wouldn't tour again, but now he IS because money is a powerful motivator," and, "You have a strong resemblance to Natalie Merchant...you can take that as a compliment," (I did--I have always liked Natalie Merchant) but mostly he wanted to tell me about how he was meeting his sponsor and that his sponsor was going to be mad. I told him that his sponsor had good reason to be mad, that whatever reprimand he gets, he deserves. I bet that poor guy wished he'd never sat down next to me, especially after I started telling him that he either needed to give the bottle of vodka he had in his bag to me so I could throw it away, or he needed to throw it away himself. "I can tell you my answer to your request right now, and it is NO," he snarled, "It makes me feel safe to have it in there."

"Safe? Seriously? It makes you feel safe to keep a bottle of the stuff that is ruining your life in your bag all the time? That is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard, and you have until 12th and Main to change your mind and hand me that bottle." He went on with some nonsense about how his answer was NO and he would not change his mind, so I took the liberty to remind him that Robert Smith changed his mind about touring, that people change their minds all the time, and if Robert could do it, so could he. His mouth gaped open at my audacity, both for asking him to hand over the bottle and for comparing him, a mere mortal, to Robert Smith, who is some sort of musical god. I raised my eyebrows at him; it was the best response I could come up with.

In the end, of course he didn't hand me the bottle. Our whole section of the bus was listening in, probably shaking their heads at my futile attempt to make an alcoholic hand over his stash, but whatever. I didn't really care. As I exited the bus, I reminded him that he could still throw out the bottle himself and start detox sooner than when he checked in to whatever rehab facility his sponsor drove him to. As I slipped out the back door, he was vigorously shaking his head to indicate his firm no, but he called out, at the last minute, as a peace offering of sorts, "Hey! Wow! I really like your shoes!"

Uh, thanks?

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In less amusing news, I got my first pedicure of the season today, even though the temperature barely crossed the springlike threshold of fifty degrees. I chose today's nail salon based solely on the name, Star Nails, which is the name of the place I frequented (and adored completely) in Connecticut. I came away pleased; I have found my nail place. Rachel, who had the idea to get pedicures today in the first place, said that she liked it okay, but it lacked good atmosphere. She'll try out some other spots, but I will go back to Star Nails all spring and summer. I care less about atmosphere than I do about the fact that the man (a man! again!) who did my nails was gentle and professional, that I saw him put the tools in the sanitizer with my own eyes, and that I also witnessed him disinfect the foot bath tub. Good Job + Good Sanitation Practices = Complete Pedicure Satisfaction. I see no reason to take my chances trying out any other salons.

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In addition, I also got my hair cut and highlighted today. It's a little bit sassier than it was before, but not so much that it looks too hip for the likes of me. It's just right. And I know you'd like to see a photo, but the lighting in my house in the evenings is good for mood, but not so good for photographs, so you'll just have to wait. Patiently. If you're really good, I might even take a photo of my super cute pedicure as well. You'll feel so jealous that you'll want to go get a pedicure of your own, and I hope that you will. There's really nothing like a fresh set of brightly colored toes to make you feel all springlike, regardless of the outdoor temperature.

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Over and out; it's time for bed.

2 comments:

Shiz said...

First, you are awesome awesome awesome awesome for talking with that alcoholic and telling him like it is. And what shoes were you wearing, woman?

Second,what color are the toenails?

Third, yes we do need a hair photo. Thanks.

marymuses said...

I was wearing my black Camper Twins with the pink and blue embroidered flowers and the pink snail.

My toenails are bright pink with white flowers on the big toes, which I normally do not do, but the lady was so cute when she was showing the designs to me that I agreed to do it.

The hair photo will come when I actually brush my hair.