Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Laugh and Cry in a Single Sound

I'm not saying I lead a sheltered life but last week I had the chance for the first time in my life (at least in this one) to 'knuckle bump' with someone. I had no idea what he was intending when he put his right fist straight out but I sort of flinched and braced for impact. When nothing happened, I more or less opened my eyes and he was staring at me the same way I stared at my plate years ago when I learned 'calamari' was Italian for squid.

I never ate lunch, or any other meal, at the cool kids table, so I appreciated the crash course on cool I received -except I know instinctively that what an old guy thinks is cool, ain't. All those trick pygmy pony handshakes from years gone by--the ones that look like they were choreographed by Alvin Ailey or George Balanchine; when I do them it's more like Jerry Lewis.

I am, like it or not, a living fossil and the former portion of that assertion is subject to some discussion I've been told. Since most of that all happens after I've toddled off to bed, I have no first hand knowledge of the respective positions except to note Friday is rubbish day in my neighborhood and so far I haven't awakened on Friday mornings and found myself curbside.

I've accepted my place as an aging bebop doofus hipster who became far more decorative than useful decades ago and then, as my looks faded and old age set in, took to staying indoors until the sun went down because I was frightening the neighborhood children. They, like our two, are grown and gone, for the most part, so I can wander around to my heart's content secure in the knowledge that anyone I meet will work very hard to avoid even acknowledging me much less exchanging greetings. Which is too bad, really, as I'm getting pretty good with the knuckle-bumping.
-bill kenny

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