Tuesday, January 29, 2008


I've decided there's no sense in pretending I'm any good for academic working today, after getting to bed at about 3:30 a.m. and not getting to sleep until well after that. After getting Clare off to the Children's Garden (warmly bundled, lunch in hand, and bitterly protesting the injustice of it all, for about 30 seconds until I was out of sight when she could buckle down to really enjoying herself) I came back home, popped in a BG and went right back to sleep.

So, HOPE was a great thing to do and I enjoyed myself quite a lot--not something you anticipate about walking around in the cold for hours, attempting to interview people who don't want to be interviewed. Our CCfB team got a bit split up, so I had the privilege of teaming up with a couple who, as it turns out, are not only inspirational themselves in all sorts of ways, but friends-of-friends. So it was a joy to spend a few hours getting to know them while doing something concretely helpful together.

Despite Brent's penchant for anxiety, and the police escort which trailed us (for the first half of the night, anyhow), nothing at all unsettling happened the whole night. Until I got on the train to come home.

As you might imagine, the trains were mostly empty at 2:50 a.m. My car had a couple people sleeping on one end. And a bunch of guys who immediately became very loud when I stepped into the car and sat down, in the middle between them and the sleepers. Despite myself I felt uneasy. I didn't want to, but I did. And they got louder and louder and more flamboyant--cursing, telling lurid stories about girlfriends. And I just sat and tried to control my body language so that a glance at me wouldn't proclaim "scared white lady wants OUT!"

Nothing happened.

One by one they exited the train at various stops, until the last guy came and sat down directly opposite me, right before getting off at 14th St. And then he stood up, walked to the doors right next to me, looked at me and said, "You are beautiful. Just can't get off this train without sayin'." Uh, thanks. Have a good night.

Unsettled. Convicted. Ashamed. Confused.

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