Wednesday, July 31, 2002

a six foot tall blossom and the new Boss CD

Everyone at work really loved my Magic Cookie Bars. One woman, Charity, demanded that I make her own private batch and bring it on Friday. She said she will pay me. They had yet to install a phone on my desk still, so it was another day working with the self-proclaimed "bitches," Luciano (the 22 year old mom, who was my trainer), Donna ( the cursing grandma), and her two sister-in-laws, both also grandmas and both also big fans of cussing. I know I already said how much I loved crude old people, particularly crude old women - I think this is because I'm sexist and just think that old ladies will be genteel and mild-mannered, and so it is so surprising (even though it shouldn't be) to hear one of them say "Oh, I bit my fucking tongue." Or a very common one throughout the day is "What the fuck?" Donna is always cracking jokes too, about panties, about silly stuff, and even on some of the co-workers. A new girl walked through our section, and Donna, no looker herself, said in hushed tones to Luciano and I, "That is one ugly broad." I love "the bitches" and wish that I would have started working there ealier so I could have had a whole summer's worth of their entertainment. My love of these women also has something to do with how in every one of my past jobs, cursing has just been generally frowned upon. I said "crap" once in passing at Yes, and Martha, an old lady, was so appalled by my usage of that word. I really love the fact that I can swear freely amongst my co-workers and not have to worry about offending them. I decided today that I loved the people in Wisconsin, that they are the most accepting and pleasant people anywhere, and that there really must be something in the water - why aren't people this nice everywhere?

There is that scene in Dennis the Menace, the fairly horrible live-action movie, where George has a flower that blooms only once every forty years for just a brief moment, we're talking like less than a minute, and Dennis, being the menace, somehow distracts George from this brief moment of beauty. And, it was this I remembered, the implausibility I regarded the situation with, when I read today about such a plant that was in bloom for a couple days here, a plant that only blossoms two or three times in its forty year lifespan, the titan arum. After I got off of work, I went down to the greenhouse where there was already a huge line of people waiting to see this plant. So many people coming to witness this fifteen year old high school girl, this moment of beauty, the height of puberty, before it withers in a day. Witnessing something fleeting and thinking that that means something, that we can say we saw it, and attempt to recall what this six foot tall blossom looked like. We can witness something our own size, something even a little bit bigger come into this world and go out, something beautiful and we will wonder about our own lives, wonder if they are just as transitory, if it is only our protracted sense of the passing of time that makes us think we are not blooming and withering and sinking back into the earth in impossibly brief spans of time, to do other things, to maybe even bloom again in twenty or so years.

I bought the new Bruce Springsteen album today. I like it a lot.

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