Germ Man



On Saturday morning I took the LA Metro train downtown. It was just past nine, so there weren’t too many other riders. But the folks that were there provided some fascinating people watching.


The most interesting of the bunch was Germ Man. This dude got on at some random stop and immediately headed to an empty corner of the train. As there were only about 10 souls on that car, it was easy to find solitary space. The first thing I noticed about Germ Man were his blue rubber gloves – the dishwashing variety. The next thing that struck my eye was his homemade cape. He had some sort of skull cap tied around his head, and there was a surgical mask pulled away from his face and propped on his forehead. He was a twitchy fellow, kind of shaking here and there. And he spent most of his time looking at his own reflection in a glass window. At some point, I guess he tired of being alone, so he moved near other riders. In doing so, he reminded me of those schlubs at the movie theater on slow days. You know the type – the sap who spies with his little eye the only other person attending a matinee and then proceeds to go and sit directly in front of or behind that lone viewer. I hate those guys.


Anyhoo – Germ Man first headed over to seats occupied by a lady and her 3 small children. Within seconds, one of the kids coughed – politely – into her elbow. Well Germ Man started twitching away and rushed to stand near someone else. Then that dude coughed, which sent Germ Man into a near spasm, followed by a quick retreat. The next guy he approached, well, I swear he started fucking with Germ Man. The rider coughed a little and sent Germ Man fleeing. Then a few more folks did the same. I can’t be sure, but I’m fairly certain the only legitimate cough heard during that ride belonged to a well-mannered 5-year-old girl. And believe me when I tell you I was fighting the chuckles. Before his head exploded, Germ Man headed back to the empty corner of the train car, pulled down his surgical mask and twitched in solitude. He then began rolling his t-shirt sleeves until his shoulders were exposed, he tightened the do-rag around his head and smoothed his eyebrows. He approached the car doors and stood tall. When the train stopped at his station, he walked proudly and shakily onto the platform, ready to fight Germ crime.


That was when a no-neck muscle-head roller-bladed aboard and sat near me, knocking me with the boots he held in one hand. In his other hand he carried a metal bar, about 4 feet long. As I’m not used to anyone speaking to me on the train, I was caught off-guard when he abruptly asked my name. Without hesitation, I said “Sarah.” Then – I swear – he started saying something to me in response and fell asleep, mid-slur. He was with a buddy who woke him and they both got off at their chosen stop.


My stop was next, and I made my way up and out from the underground and to my meeting. I had only been on the train for a short time, but the trip certainly yielded some mighty fine visual entertainment.


Oh. Almost forgot. Germ Man was also wearing a studded dog collar. I’m sure that’s where his power was. Either there or in that fraying, homemade cape. It really was a marvel.

Wow! What a Day! – Part 1 of 3



Mister and I had occasion to spend a day last week at Venice Beach. (I’ll go into the reasons and those details in my next few posts.) The day was a hot one, and though the Pacific Ocean looked mighty inviting, we know just how cold that water is and, well, how dirty it is, too. So we admired its coolness from a distance and walked around the area for a few hours.


We passed by a bit of graffiti that was too personal to ignore…



We saw the canals of Venice, which look nothing like the canals of Venezia, but are still pretty danged awesome…



We also walked the Boardwalk for a few miles and I have to admit, I definitely slipped into freak-overload there. I usually enjoy the people-watching at the beach. For some reason, this trip just got to be too much. I blame the heat, as it was in the high 90′s – at the beach! That’s unheard of, y’all. So when Mister and I had hit the beach wall, I suggested we head back to our car and take a bit of a nap before our local evening commitment. I love that guy for about a jillion reasons, and his agreeing to a car nap was at the top of the list that day, I tell ya.



So after our evening commitments and a long, long day (again – I’ll tell all in the next couple of posts), it was time to head home.


I snapped one last pic of Venice Beach and we aimed toward sleep. On the way home, all I could say was, “Wow! What a day!” It surely, surely was.



Driving Into The Desert – Food



“If’n you’re starving there is a place I like…

food’s what you’d expect and generally served by tweakers –”




At some point, Mister and I had hit the straight-road-dippity-do traveling wall and decided we needed to get back to the main highway. That, and we were hungry. So we took Brian’s advice and stopped.


He didn’t lie. The food was indeed served by tweakers. The food wasn’t extraordinary either. But I did get in some primo people watching.


There was one dude who kept going outside. I assume he was a smoker. Each time he came back in and headed to the table where his 2 lady friends were waiting, I imagined a bit of his personality. I ended up picturing him going into a clothing store and saying, “I’ll take this shirt. You can keep the sleeves. Don’t need ‘em.” He certainly wasn’t wearing them.


Once the tweaker brought the check, Mister and I zipped back to the 10 and headed into Scottsdale. By the time we were near our friends’ place, the sun was setting.


It was a long day of driving. We’d seen more than we’d expected and had laughed a lot along the way. Mister’s good company. Roadtripping with him is fun. We don’t do it very often, so these rare trips count for a lot.


Remember being a kid? Didn’t all our family trips involve the car? What happened to that mode of travel? I don’t know. But this particular trip was lovely. I super-enjoyed the desert contemplation and the open space. I even enjoyed the straight, dippy road.



I wouldn’t want to drive it all the time though. A gal needs curves every now and then…