Monday, June 01, 2009

Buying beer in Binghamton

The night would evolve from kosher marshmallows to four hours of poker.

I’d found my pace with battling hunger pains, when a homemade marshmallow was offered to me. The sticky morsel was dense and flavorful, light woodiness mixed between the gelatinous sweet tanginess. A surprise diner followed before I had to jet-out and meet the crew.

Parked in the lot behind where the shooting occurred. Binghamton has many oversized parking lots with many empty spaces. Whoever built these huge parking lots certainly didn't foresee the sparse population density of this city. Not once have there ever been enough cars to fill every space. Free parking is a perk during depression.

Shortly after embracing the warmth in the evening air, I walked down to the local supermarket to pick-up beer. What beer, any beer? No, the need for legit libations was in order. Smack me across the head if I ever buy Coors Light in your presence, reader. Soon, I had found my bottle of dubbel from Ommegang. Drink slow and proud.

I was waiting in line behind two women, one with a young daughter no more than ten years olds. She was fidgeting with magazines, picking up crossword puzzles and trying to solve them, placing them in front of Elle magazines while frantically twirling her hair in curls. She took a short look at me. I smile as politely as I can at the moment, but she just stares straight into my eyes. It’s amazing how certain small children can give you such strong penetrating looks. I wind up glancing away for a second, only to return my eyes to her restlessness.

After a few seconds of humming, the girl starts to do a little jig: a circular dance. The mother, who is having problems with some plastic card, looks at her and tells her to cool out. The other woman is just beside the mother, leaning impatiently on a 12-pack of Genny cream ale. Plastic cards come with PINs and this card is being persnickety.

The short interval of daydreaming was interrupted by the girl, who was now jumping up and down beside the Time magazines. The cover was that of Time’s covers for 2008.
“Barack Obama! Barack Obama! Momma, Barack Obama! Look look look!”
In her excitement, the girl knocked over some chocolate bars on the shelf just beside her. The other woman was now looking at me, smiling embarrassingly.
“It’s Barack Obama momma! Look! It’s Barack Obama!”
The mother responded, “Ok honey, let’s stop now. I see, I see.”
“It’s Barack Obama!”
Other people were now laughing and smiling. The picture of Obama is small amongst the collection of other Time Magazine covers. It’s a copy of a copy, a facsimile of the most important face of the dawn of the new millennium; the girl has no prejudice for tiny pixels.

So I say brand your figureheads as small as you want. You can grow bigger than them.

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