Thursday, October 16, 2008

In marathon time...

The official time is 2-hours 18-minutes. No, that is not the wining time for the Chicago Marathon, it is how long it took me to travel out to Ikea….one way! I had to take a bus to a train to another bus to a trolley. So in total, I spent about 4-1/2 hours riding on eight different vehicles just so I could buy discount Swedish crap. I did indulge in a Swedish meatball lunch.

Although spending half your day riding on public transportation would dampen the spirits, I did come away with some priceless stories. On the first crowded bus, I noticed there was an open seat next to an older Chinese woman. I was too late to grab it, but then I realized why it was vacant before. The old Chinese woman would randomly start yelling and gesturing with her hands. Over a 30 minute bus ride, I saw four different people sit next to her only to move after one or two stops.

The story of the day happened on the Trolley. I stepped on the trolley to find it packed with 20-30 Hispanic women all wearing red turtlenecks. It was a tad creepy with dozens of eyes on me thinking “where is your red turtleneck huh….we all wore ours”. Additionally, the women were all speaking Spanish. Well actually, I know some Spanish and I didn’t recognize anything, so it was probably a funky dialect or just not Spanish. I sounded like every other word was “guacamole”. Seriously it was like “blah mole blah guacamole blah blah mole mole”. Unlike the bus or train, the trolley didn’t have individual seats. Instead it had long polished wood benches. When the trolley driver took a sharp turn too fast, half of us slid right off the benches onto the floor. The women all started yelling “GUACAMOLE GUACAMOLE GUACAMOLE!!!!”

In unrelated news, the following weekend was the Chicago Marathon. I only mention it because I just finished a book that references it in a hilarious way. My friend Dana turned me on to the Jen Lancaster books. She and Dana went to the same Big 10 school, both were in a sorority, both worked in Chicago, etc. Well this woman’s writing is hilarious and so snarky. As a favor to a friend, she agreed to pick up their racing packet for the Chicago marathon. Well she noticed that everyone at the packet pick up were actually running the marathon and therefore really in shape, skinny, etc. She had put on 50 pounds recently because she was unemployed and all the skinny people were giving her dirty looks for being there. Since she refused to be insulted she started to overdo the fat person among toned bodies scenario.
Here is the excerpt from her book Bitter is the new Black:
[she eats a candy bar in front of the masses]
“I announce, ‘damn, them twixes aahh tasty!’ to the new balance clad Ally Mcbeal behind me. ‘Hey, I need me a smoke wicked bad. You got a light?’ I ask her.
She’s beyond appalled. ‘smoking is not allowed in the convention center. And furthermore, it’s very bad for you.’
‘So’s Jack Daniel’s shooters and my boyfriend Snake, but that don’t mean it ain’t fun!’ I reply, punctuating the statement with a resounding smack on my own butt and a quick pelvic thrust.”


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