Monday, August 06, 2007

Red

I have had more husbands than I have had cars and I got this one used. Come to think of it, the current husband is used too. I’m from Berkeley, we think we invented recycling. Red, my 1992 Corolla was made back before Toyota figured out things like temperature control. Someone once stole my radio and returned it because it was so old.

I walked out of Highland, spilling half my diet Doctor Pepper on my already sweaty T-shirt. I worked Saturday and it had gotten hot, two friends sat at the new bus bench. I paused briefly before offering them ride, I had left one of the kid’s lunches in Red and it probably smelled pretty bad. I offered to get my car and pick them up but they refused. When we got to Red and I had to cram all the kid’s crap into the trunk to make room.

Mary told me they needed to go to 35th Avenue and the BART station. When they saw how bad my car looked she offered me gas money. We drove down 35th to Tahoe Terraces, Mary pointed to her window and the freshly painted sign. “Yeah, they had to repaint the sign; someone had blacked out the “Ta” making it Hoe Terraces.

You know Oakland, in my neighborhood we got a Peet’s and touch of gentrification, so whenever something happens to the yuppies they get all indignant. Then they have to tell you how successful and important they are and how their kids are getting into medical school and how their dog’s GPA is higher than your IQ. They want you to marvel at how something so awful could happen to someone special. The whole time they’re talking, you’re thinking what kind of a dipstick chases someone collecting aluminum and tries to take their cans back? I say stay out of other people's shopping carts.

Now Oakland has tons of these incredibly important gifted people, they live in Montclair, they go to Claremont, their children excel at everything, they sit on Boards, they chair committees, they write memos, and they think they know what’s best for all of us. They never need a ride home, they wouldn’t bed caught dead in Red and they don’t live in Hoe Terraces. Whatever, just so I don’t have to listen to them whine.

1 comment:

Dennis Evanosky said...

I love your story about those folks who live "up there." Trouble is "up there" got too expensive for some of "these people.

Now they're down here sippin Peets coffee and wishin' that "those people" would stop "stealing" stuff that they already threw away.