"What's next after gambling, Patrick? Prostitution? Drug dealing?"
The phrase "free society" is lost on some people. But that's the least of this guy's problems.
"What's next, governor?"
Ah he wasn't talking to me. That made since. I turned around. Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick was conspicuously absent. We were, in fact, outside the State House, so it was worth another look. But no. No politicians within earshot. It took me a second to remember who he was.
It was the Skitzophrenic Subway Pundit. The reason it took me a while to recognize him is I hadn't seen him since around the time gay marriage had been legalized here. Well, aside from the fact that I'd never seen him above ground before. When I had to take the T to school every day I'd run in to him a few times a month, always with his small canvas bag and his opinions. And every time muttering under his breath to no one (or sometimes an absent someone) in particular about everything that had in his gone to hell in this state. The Big Dig, impending teachers strikes, insurance regulation, the lottery, healthcare... I couldn't seem to come up with any ideology he seemed to subscribe to other than that he was a complainer. I wasn't sure where legalization of casino gambling fit in with all of this. And I didn't really feel like asking.
Casino gambling seems to have more detractors than dog racing, which troubles me.
The detritus from the Red Sox parade had yet to be cleared up. I'd been there, of course. Standing outside Government center as the repurposed World War 2 era amphibious vehicles rolled down a corridor of hundreds of thousands of fans. From where I stood it looked like they were afloat on the crowd, which roared as the Dropkick Murphys broke into "I'm Shipping up to Boston" and Jonathan Papelbon did his now famous stepdance, wearing a kilt. Later he rocked out on broomstick air guitar as they played "For Boston"
Manny Ramirez was on the mike, chiding the jackholes who were making more of a story about Alex Rodriguez, who he was once almost traded for, than the Series. "Hey forgettabout A-Rod," he shouted. "We've got Mike Lowell! MVP! MVP!"
Manny was, as he is wont to be, being Manny.
The boat that owners John Henry, Larry Luchinno, Tom Werner and company were riding stopped in front of us for a while. A chant of "Re-sign Lowell" broke out. He smiled, and pointed to his right, where Theo Epstein was seated, mouthing "that's his job" or something like that. So we moved down. We also saw Jason Veritek with a Re-sign Lowell sign.
Three hours to kill around the Commons.
A guy maybe a bit older than me who looked like some Bizarro world non-douchebag version of Axl Rose was playing a 1958 reissue Epiphone Flying V trying to get to Florida. He was a bit frustrated because his shredding didn't come through on the portable fuzzbox he had at his disposal. I didn't have cash for him so I made him a couple of bucks playing a few things I knew while he searched his memory for songs he couldn't play that weren't eighties metal. Cool guy. We hung out for a while, trading licks. He showed me a Cream-style riff he'd written that I had to forget about to make sure I didn't end up stealing it.
The college bookstore my buddy from high school works was locked at the exterior exit. You could only get at it through the college proper, which was checking IDs. Which meant, he explained to me as he let me in discreetly, they were pretty much vacant. He took a pull from a Dunkin Donuts cup with a healthy layer of white foam at the top.
"you don't drink lattes."
"got me. want one?"
He went into the back room and emerged with an identical cup.
I approve of this man.
I grabbed some gum before going to meet some friends I was introduced to at the xkcd meetup in Cambridge for a chocolate tasting at the Harvard Club. I felt thoroughly underdressed in my Red Sox fleece as I passed by the doorman.
I sat down and was handed a catalog. The headline: Bacon and Chocolate
Oh fuck yes.
The shuttle bus home from Haymarket station (in lieu of an ailing Orange Line train) can, on occasion, be a bit surreal. Standing in the back section, my vantage point was such that I couldn't actually see which street we were on, or which station we were headed toward. Only that it was night and it was raining and we were moving.
I guess it mostly felt surreal because I was reading Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere, which is a trip on its own. For some reason this is the first work of his that I've picked up and it comes with my full recommendation.
Speaking of recommendations, if there's a chance that you're reading this and haven't already voted for Cooper in the weblog awards, go on and do it.
Seriously. There isn't enough I can say about her that I haven't already. She deserves an award.