Dear reader, it’s not been easy trudging through the trenches today.
I was trying to avoid the roadside carnage by keeping the camera lens pointed upward, but I was met with an umbrella in the face when I attempted a snap of a film shoot on Queen Street west. I’m fairly certain it wasn’t raining horizontally wherever I chose to stand. I considered that maybe he was trying to hide his face, but guess what?
That’s the umbrella guy looking straight at us. Obviously not camera shy; probably just fiercely protective of the set; which was actually indoors. In fact, I have no idea why he gave me the facial parasol. Maybe he’s just angry because of the unforgiving rod that’s up his ass.
So to drive home my point, I crossed the street and took the photo. Zoom lens; they just don’t make umbrellas big enough. Plus, when I finally saw the photo, there was really nothing going on behind him. Not like this:
Strangely, no one would have stopped me if I had chosen to desecrate this unique war memorial. The “snow” looked a lot more convincing if you were approaching it from down the street. Even more strangely, the stuff piled up against the sides of buildings was real snow (cold and making a big puddle).
Umbrella guy’s motives and the reasoning behind using real snow in the middle of July caused me greatly disorienting confusion. I think this is what veterans describe as shell shock. I stumbled about for a while until the gentle pitter pat of rain on my forehead snapped me back to reality.
My mission to ignore trash was succeeding (mostly), but not as I had imagined.
I suddenly found myself in front of what used to be a convenience store, now lined with young people and a quick banner job around the front advertising the new Harry Potter movie. Everyone was there to meet Tom Felton. The fans seemed to be as old and uncomfortable as the actors in the film (what’re they, like, 30 now?).
Then, remembering my own boyhood love for thumbing through curried library books, I chided myself for being too harsh; I’m sure these gangly teens have a fond childhood connection to their Wiccan mistress. But I don’t remember them guzzling Red Bull at Hogwarts — or was that in one of the newer novels (newer than the first ten pages of the first one)?
A picture as confused as I was.
The rain was now coming down harder and, as I don’t much care for Potter and his kind, I decided to move. By the time I got to city hall, the sun had broken through the clouds and was shining down on a very orderly and polite Iranian election demonstration.
I spoke to one of the gentlemen holding a placard and we swapped war stories. I assured him that he had my support and he in turn wished me luck on the rest of my journey.
The encounter left me calm and peaceful. I strolled home slowly in the bright sunshine feeling lucky to be alive. Things could have gone so much worse; that umbrella could’ve gone right in my eye; all sorts of bad stuff.
Maybe it was General Miller’s inspirational, uplifting words running through my mind that got me through it:
“Get your donut-eatin’ asses back to work in the next five minutes or I will personally come down there and kick them out of the picket line myself you sonsabitches!”