You can know anything. It's all there. You just have to find it.

-Neil Gaiman


Friday, March 2, 2012

Spring in the City

Even though we still have a few inches of snow on the ground, I know spring started this morning.

No, I didn't see a robin.

Or a crocus.

I saw the surest sign of spring.  A crazy bum on the sidewalk, talking to himself and lurching around.

Yes, they are out of hibernation, and, like a grizzly bear, highly unpredictable and easily agitated.

So I'm walking the mile in to work.  I park on the residential street in Minneapolis and walk about a mile because:

1. There is no free parking around the U.
2. I refuse to pay to park to go to work.

I mean, it's bad enough to have to GO to work.
I'm not going to PAY money to do it.

So I walk about 20 minutes and I like it.

Except when you have run-ins with the crazy bums, who like to hang out in this particular area of Minneapolis, very close to downtown.

Me (looking ahead and seeing the tell-tale aimless shuffle of crazy bum): Oh goody....

I make extra noise as I walk in his direction, lest I startle him.  It's like when you're hiking in the wilderness and you wear bells, to let the bears know you're coming.  I briefly wonder if they make crazy-bum bells.  I bet they sound like tiny police car sirens.

I cough and stamp my feet louder as I approach.  Crazy bum man is lurching in both directions, taking up most of the sidewalk.  Suddenly, he stops and turns, seeing me for the first time.

I smile, careful not to look directly at him.  He might get spooked.

Crazy Bum: "Hey!  Are you following me?"

Me (laughing as I pass by): "No."

Crazy Bum (laughing): "Just kidding!"

Me: "Okay."

Crazy Bum (still laughing):  Herggaboodala... mrrrff...booga...

I pick up the pace slightly.  Even though he was wearing a big hoodie, I'm pretty sure he had a tin foil hat on underneath it.

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