Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The guy in his shirt-sleeves

People are funny.

Got gas this morning at the station that sits at the corner of Broadway and Adair Drive in Fountain City. Putting petrol in the car makes me mad these days. But that's another story for another day.

I was pulling out of the station just as the light turned red. Up pulls some woman in a Jaguar with a Central High bumper sticker on the back of her car. She sees me edging into traffic, pulls up quickly and blocks my way.

I didn't get mad. I just laughed and shook my head.

Eating lunch at Chesapeake's downtown a bit later, I watched with amusement as all the self-important people filed in. They think they're something.

They're something all right.

Oh, a few of them are nice. A former chancellor at UT is a superb human being, at least by appearances and from all accounts. Some of the others are probably OK, too. Some of them are just dull.

But I think it's funny to put on false airs. Surely it's got to be some kind of overcompensation.

I drove back north and felt my blood pressure relax as I topped Black Oak Ridge. These are my people. This is my home.

Here's one thing 30 years have taught me:

I've decided that I'm going to be the guy in his shirt-sleeves, sitting in the crowd with the folks at the baseball game. I'll be the fella at the end of the bar, sipping on a cold domestic beer while others drink something else out of a glass. I'll be Nick Carraway and let somebody else be Jay Gatsby.

I'll fail miserably but will try to always let you out in traffic. You can block my way if you wish.

Just don't be surprised if I let out a chuckle or two.

2 Comments:

Blogger Bridget Trogden said...

The beer is cold, the porch is shaded, and you can even wear your shirt sleeves. When you coming to visit?

9:01 PM  
Blogger Jake Mabe said...

Soon, very soon...

10:55 AM  

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