There may be something wrong in a society where an SUV — a vehicle to conquer almost any kind of terrain for the cost of many gallons of gas — is the predominant car in the suburbs. Sure, there are some hills here. But none of them justify a four-wheel drive and man-sized tires. The names speak volumes themselves: If it’s not “suburban” it’s “patriot”. And if you are a patriot in the suburban, you’d better own both of them.
Speaking of names, I just went to “Target” to buy stuff to make this home more homely for the next 5 1/2 months, where I heard a mother call for her daughter “Miracle”. “Miracle” as in “It’s a miracle you are still alive, you spawn of Satan! Get your ass over here so I can beat it!” Maybe it’s a culture thing but I remember when people bought special “children naming books” to find the right name for their offspring. Here it seems like they just flip through a dictionary and pick a name at random.
I get talked to a lot. By strangers, hobos, police men (for riding my bike in a walking zone on campus), but strangely not by my coworkers. At first I thought that I just imagined the total lack of acknowledgment of my existence. Then Daniel told me he felt the same way. Even the guys from the same cubicle try to avoid eye contact by all means. The only ones giving us a glimpse of human interaction are also visiting scholars from Europe. I don’t think it’s meant to be rude, it’s just that everybody fights for himself and that there is just no time for courtesy.
I have learned that the words “Excuse me.” don’t express the desire to apologize for anything. They mean “I will cut you!”. I’m not sure about “I’m sorry.” but I suspect something similar.
Anyway, the crossroads cafeteria at the campus is awesome although everybody says something else. I pay $7 for all you can eat and I can eat almost everything. They have a variety of vegan options including vegan cheese on real pizza and unlimited refills on silk soy milk in chocolate AND vanilla. I can even grab a cup and take an organic hazelnut latte to go without paying extra. If I’m not getting fat because of that, I never will.
Until next week.