Friday, November 9, 2007

An Interesting Consideration

After watching your cat throw himself repeatedly into the window without achieving what appears to be his desired result of going through it, you begin to consider the idea that he might be a little off.

In a similar situation, after throwing yourself repeatedly into your work without achieving what is your desired result of finishing it, you being to consider the idea that you might be a little off too.

Moral: You and your glass-happy cat are frighteningly similar.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

People Watching, Episode One: The Laundry Conundrum

You're outside your apartment having the usual afternoon smoke. You lean over the railing on the third floor to engage in a little not-creepy-you-swear people watching. There isn't much going on today, to your dismay, although the apartment complex isn't completely devoid of activity.

Some woman from the building next to you is lugging a full basket of laundry across the street. She's got a lot of laundry in that basket, and briefly you wonder what would happen if she dropped it. Assorted items of clothing would fly everywhere, right in the middle of the street. Anyone driving by would have to stop; after all, what kind of jerk would just drive over someone's clean laundry? They'd probably sit there until she'd gathered everything up, or if they're a jerk (but not as much of a jerk that would keep driving), they'd blast their horn a little too.

You wonder what you would do if such a scenario came true; would you run down to help her? You are on the third floor after all, and that's quite a bit of stairs to run down. She'd probably have gathered everything up by then. In that case, would it be better just to stay put? You imagine you'd feel like an ass, hanging over the railing and smoking a cigarette and just watching her predicament. You'd probably look like one as well--she would probably know you were up there. Maybe it would just be better to go back inside, although you still have most of the cigarette left. It's no fun to waste a cigarette, especially after all the tax you had to pay to buy them. What would Aristotle do in this situation, you wonder?

After wrestling over the conundrum for a while, you realize the woman has already disappeared back into her apartment. Relieved you don't have to make such a harrowing decision (at least for today), you finish off the cigarette and escape to warmer climates inside.

Moral: Carry your laundry in a bag. It makes things easier for everyone.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

The Coal Cars

As you're climbing that annoying hill in the parking lot of your apartment complex, you notice something unusual. Every day you take a shortcut over some train tracks to avoid a much larger and thus more annoying hill because, as we've learned, you are very out of shape. As you approach the train tracks, a massive object looms in your peripheral vision; looking up, you realize it's a train.

Well, not a whole train. It's actually four or five cars from a train--those black, boxlike cars you always see in Westerns that are full of coal. Upon further inspection, you realize that these cars are in fact full of coal as well. Your mind boggles; what are train cars full of coal doing on the train tracks? Where'd the rest of the train go? Who decided to just leave tons and tons of coal sitting in front of an apartment complex? Your mind continues to boggle until you realize the cars are blocking your short cut. Cursing the damn coal cars, you tromp back into the apartment complex and up the much larger and thus more annoying hill.

The next day, you're making you're way up toward the train track shortcut again because, well, you don't learn very well. Of course, this time you're a little more observant and notice the cars are not blocking your path. Points for being observant this time. As you trip over the tracks, you get the crazy urge to climb up that little ladder every coal car has up the side. You wonder what sitting in a huge pile of coal would feel like, especially in a coal car you see in Westerns. But of course you decide against it--you know as soon as you're scrambling up the ladder, someone's going to see you and call the police or something. There's really no way to explain how you were climbing up a coal car by accident. Maybe if your hat blew away in the wind and got caught up there, it would be enough to get you out of any trouble. You curse your current hatless state and move on.

On your way back, you can't help but notice the cars have moved. The same number of coal cars are there, but they shifted about fifty feet. You walk home wondering why someone would have done this.

The mystery of the coal cars entrances you until you discover their absence the next day. You look up and down the tracks; no sign of them anywhere. It makes you a little sad, but also confused.

Moral: Coal cars are really sneaky.

Monday, November 5, 2007

The Trouble with Bicycles

You knew it was a bad idea. Your heart pounding in your chest as you made your way down the dirty steps of your apartment building was enough of a hint, but you ignored it this time. A little dusting off the seat, a quick turn of the key, and there you were, walking your brand-new bike that hadn't been touched in weeks into the street. Looking around for traffic, you awkwardly threw a leg over its shiny blue frame--and you were off.

At least, for a little bit. In no time at all your legs burned in protest of all this sudden exercise, and your lungs wheezed from their own work. You curse the cigarette you smoked before lunch; you hadn't realized how picking up that little habit again would affect you. You realize people are walking faster than you can ride.

After a few large buses make a big show of dodging around your sad attempt at cycling, you decide enough is enough. Pulling over onto the sidewalk, you pretend to check your tires for air, then secure the shiny blue bike to the closest chain you can find. You then being strolling down the street as if you'd never seen the lonely bicycle before while trying your best to catch your breath. It'll be there later when you walk home, although inside you sort of wish it'll be stolen. Then you'd have a real excuse not to use it.

Moral: The trouble with bicycles is that you already have to be in shape to ride them.