Anyone who read my last post could probably tell that the Austin heat is really starting to get to me. I mean, I almost never recommend unorthodox usage of Popsicles. Candy canes, yes. Salad tongs, sure. But not Popsicles. I am a lady after all. I do have my standards.
Anyway, in the midst of my 107 degree misery yesterday, there happened to be a rather bright development. Yes, people, let’s all raise a glass because it looks like I now have a new sworn enemy. A new nemesis! A new “Bitch, please,” if you will. And early indicators show that this one may be a very, very worthy opponent indeed. (Unlike my last frenemy who greatly disappointed me by not even letting her dog poop on my lawn last week. It’s like she doesn’t even care.)
But just who is my new foe, you ask? Because surely someone of my caliber must have enemies in downtown law firms, the Texas State Capitol and the plus-size resort wear department at Saks, right? And yes, yes, I do. But even so, I didn’t happen to find my noveau enemy at any of those places this time around. Nope. Not at all. Rather, I found him just standing on the corner playing with a pylon and trying to not get his foot stuck in a storm drain.
Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you my new nemesis: The Crossing Guard.
(Note: In the interest of me not getting my ass kicked, please know that I am changing all names and identifying characteristics of said crossing guard from here on out.) (Except for the orange vest part because, well, he is a crossing guard.)
Here’s how it all went down:
At 2:30 p.m., I decide to walk the three short blocks to school to pick up the kids. I figure I can handle a few minutes of blistering hot heat, what with all of the water I’m currently retaining, however, as soon as I take 10 miserable steps, I realize the error of my ways. I then sweat like a crabby menopausal pole dancer all the way to the school.
Finally reaching the corner, I notice “Shalimar,” our new 300-lb. Samoan crossing guard who has no front teeth and a hump on his back, standing in the middle of the street with his precious stop sign. He sees me gasping for air while I wait, but even so he ignores me and walks to the other side of the street and waves for a few cars to pass. Two endless minutes later, he finally stops traffic and gestures for me to cross. By this point I’m about ready to collapse , so as I slink by I sweetly say, “Oh, thank goodness! I thought I was going to melt! It’s a hot one today, isn’t it sir?”
However, in all fairness to Shalimar, I suppose it may have sounded a little more like this: “OH, MY GAWD! MY INTESTINES WERE ABOUT TO EXPLODE IF I HAD TO WAIT ON THAT CORNER ANOTHER SECOND! I’M DYYYYIIIINNNNGGG! DYING! BLECH! I TASTE NICKEL.”
I don’t quite remember it all, exactly.
Anyway, about 15 minutes later, I had the kids with me and we patiently waited on the corner with a group of 10 or so other people. This time Shalimar quickly walked into the street and efficiently stopped traffic with his huge Siamese, I mean, Samoan hands, then waved for us all to cross. But then, when I was a mere two feet away from him and his official orange shiny vest, he looked right at me and boomed with a toothless smile, “Thank you all for being so patient, everyone! I hope nobody’s INTESTINES were in danger. Have a good day now!”
Oh, yes. He did. He sure as hell did.
And at that moment, as I wiped the hot sweat out of my eyes and rummaged in my son’s lunch box for a Sponge Bob ice pack to stick down my shorts, I stared Shalimar right in the eye and smiled back.
And I couldn’t have been more thrilled.
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