Sunday, April 25, 2010

Random Things In My World

1. A guy walked across the intersection in front of me when I was stopped at a red light. He was young, probably in his 20s--but he was wearing a geriatric beige V-neck sweater; and--get this--he wore black rubbers over his brown dress shoes. Adorable.

And even more adorable? As he crossed the street, he gave a little skip. And then another one, clearly picking up his pace in order to not hold up traffic. He appeared to be totally un-self-conscious--which, how rare is that?!--and it made me want to give him a hug.

2. Toilets are getting smarter. Today I met a toilet that offered two flushing options: one for poop, and one for pee. Allegedly, sending pee-pee to the sewers takes less flushing power than sending poo-poo to the sewers. Who knew. So there were instructions next to the flushing lever: For liquid waste, push handle up. For solid waste, push handle down.

3. Here's an interesting psychological situation that my children and I have observed many times on the way to and from school. A woman takes her brushes and sponges and buckets and brooms outside and cleans the sidewalk and street in front of her three-flat. Yes, you read that right: she sweeps. The street.

If it has recently rained, she'll sweep water into a bucket, and then carry the bucket off and empty it somewhere. If it's dry, she sweeps leafs and sticks and even dirt into a neat pile, and then brushes the pile onto a dustpan, which she then empties into a bin. Sometimes she even crosses the street and sweeps the gutters on that side.

I think this must be some sort of OCD, because there is no practical purpose to her sweeping. She's not cleaning the drains to prevent flooding. She's just sweeping up tiny bits of lawn debris--sticks, leaves, even dirt. It's THE GROUND. There's SUPPOSED TO BE dirt.

It reminds me of my across-the-street neighbor, who used to spend hours on summer days lying on his stomach, plucking clover from his front lawn. Hours. I told my friend the therapist, Dr. Paradigm Shift, about him, and she said, "OCD. Off his meds."

I think there must be an OCD epidemic in my zip code. Hope it's not contagious.

4. We were driving home from church the other day, and Civil War by Guns N' Roses was playing on the radio. The kids recognize this song from the first note, which is not actually a note but the voice of Strother Martin as the prison warden in Cool Hand Luke famously saying, "What we have here is a failure to communicate."

We listened to the song for a minute or two, and then M. Peevie, who thinks deeper thoughts than most nine-year-olds, asked, "Mom, how can war be civil?"

And then we had a whole discussion about what "civil" means, and C. Peevie pointed out that many others in history have asked that same question, and I said, but not many nine-year-olds have asked it, and ultimately none of us really knew the answer.

And there you have it. Four random things from my world. Bet you're wishing you were me right now, aren't you?


Anonymous said...

I swept the sidewalk (just a little portion of it) in front of my house today.

I am also a descendant of a man who hailed from Amsterdam in the 17th Century. Don't Dutch people wash down the front of their steps, houses? Seems I learnt that somewhere in school.

Bucky here.

E. Peevie said...

Bucky--I sweep my sidewalk, too. But this goes beyond keeping your steps and sidewalks free from mess and debris. This is more like taking a wet-vac to the street in front of your house to suck up puddles.

Leslie Wolf said...

Dare I say that I was most amused by #2? Ok, seriously, I really enjoyed the post. Thanks Eve!

Missy said...

Did this question by M. Peevie inspire your book, or were you already on the civil-war-path?

E. Peevie said...

Missy, or should I say, Dr. Vespa--No, I was on the "civil-war- path" before her question. I like that phrase: civil-war-path. I may use it in the book. With props, of course.