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thought i was a donut, ya tried to glaze me

3.17.2008

Ridiculous Shit

*Please keep in mind that when I see any of you reading this in person I will re-tell this story, even if you say you already read it. It's brief and crazy enough so that you won't mind.

So this past Friday night I was driving home from a party at my friend's house. I'm driving my car down Rockaway Beach Boulevard at around 2am, when I see a Q22 making the turn from 101st street onto the Bouley. I also see, illuminated by the buses headlights, the shadow of a figure running in the middle of the street, zigzagging between the yellow lines. The person is running, and zigging, and zagging. I couldn't tell if he was really, really drunk or actually suffering from some physical problem that would make him swerve like that; judging by the location (between the Circle and the Tap&Grill) I chose the former. The kid--I'd determined by now, as he got closer, that he had to have been about 16 or so--keeps running, fast, bus behind him, and I have to stop my car as so I don't hit him. Up close he looks familiar but I can't place him. He stops in the middle of the street with a grin on his face, and kind of taps the hood of my car and then reaches for the handle of my door, which I had locked. I didn't know if he was in trouble, but he didn't look upset. I'm gonna stick with my original assessment of him being really, really drunk. I didn't let him in the car, which I think confused/upset him, but the whole thing gave off a weird vibe and I didn't know if he'd rob me/throw up once I let him in my car. I drove off, noticing that the car behind me also stopped and actually let him in.

The next day I go on a bike ride with Kerry and we stop in Boardwalk Bagels for some coffee. I'm telling her the story, and one of the guys working there seems really interested.

"Wow, are you ok?"

"Yea," I told him. "It was just weird."

"Did you know the kid?"

"I don't think so."

"Wow, that's crazy."

"I know, right? I don't know what he was doing."


"Was he colored?"

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"You know, like was he black?"

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"Uh no, he was white."


"Well, then you should have picked him up. He coulda been getting chased."


Ok.


Let me remind you that this is not Maycomb, Alabama circa 1935. This is New York City, 2008. No joking. No smiling. Just a serious question of whether a kid was "colored" or not. I left the deli with my jumbo ice coffee really amazed that people still use that term in a context outside of making fun of racist people. I kinda always joke about my neighborhood being sort of funny, but this here is proof. And I don't know if it's all that funny.

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I wonder if my writing has even improved?