I really should get outta bed and run some miles and take B out. But first? This story.
B's been playing Pokemon Go like an absolute fiend.
It gets her out of the house. She can get out and walk if she wants--or not, if she's tired. She can play for twenty minutes a half-mile from home or hours at a time. Whatever she can tolerate is fine with me. Her favorite spot is deep in Beaver Cleaverish suburbia, where people (to evoke the stereotype?) chase Pokeys for their privileged whiny kids in their Jaguar SUVs or for themselves in their Beemer 5 Series. Oh SURE there's folks who have to open their hood and jiggle things about to start their cars and--of course--a fair sprinkling of wild-haired cat ladies driving Ford Focuses. But to B? This is PokeyHome. Where certain people suddenly take off running down the road or drive from their highly coveted parking spots (in the best positions, you can ping 3-4 Pokeyspots without moving) and we'll know we'd better follow them. However, that is NOT the tale I've come to tell you.
On the other hand...? There's spots in the city, like the State Fairgrounds. Abundant Pokeyspots, if you're driving. Most of the people are okay to decent. But the first time I took her walking? We came across a certain family. More specifically, they came across us.
Quick aside: Have you ever encountered a complete stranger and decided--on sight--that you kinda hate 'em cuz you're jealous? We've all done it at one time or another. It's human. For me, it's usually those teens at the whirlpool at my weekend gym. Weekend gym's in a Bigger Money neighborhood than B's favorite PokeySpot. These kids seem all socially well-adjusted and well-heeled and probably driving their own cars and going straight to college an shit...and it makes me wish I had a do-over. Kinda stings a bit. Probably all have their own bedrooms, too. Little shits. But I told you that to tell you this: That has everything to do with ME, not with them. Just cuz I might feel that way INSIDE wouldn't mean I'd bring that emotion OUTSIDE. Right?!?!? They'd actually have to be a Real-World Shit to me or someone else. At least that's my perspective.
Not everyone has that level of self-respect and common sense. I get it. No, I don't. I don't comprehend
it. But I've seen it and I've told you stories. Like the one 'bout the guy with the caked-on dirty 15 year-old car poking fun at me in mine when it was maybe six months old? Just.....why???
Back (again) to this tale tho.
Cuz in this one, we apparently ran across that Hater Guy's cousin.
And his two grubby little urchins.
INCLUDING his son with deep croupy cough. Not a *kaff kaff* thing. Somewhere between whooping cough and borderline pneumonia. Where the kid says he's fine...? But a grownup should get him checked out.
And his daughter who kept running ahead of them and WAYYYYY too close to us to have a brother hacking up a rich, bacteria-frothy pudding from his lower left lobe.
They were behind us for a while. At least long enough for him to read the back of my hoodie 'bragging' about either my 7K run or half-marathon ('twas the latter, actually) and decide that--as a close to 300 pounder himself--he didn't care for me much. Or perhaps there was another reason. Interracial relationships, my skin color...how 'bout we stick with my running? It's easier that way.
'Bout the leventeenth time the Bandleader of The Airborne Fungus Parade ran up on us...?
I told B to keep walking and turned to meet the bunch.
Me: 'Scuse me. Sir? I need to tell you my wife's going through chemotherapy.
Big Fat Scruffly Under-educated Fucknut: *irritated scarcely-verbal grunt of no specific purpose*
Me: She's undergoing chemo and I've noticed your son is sick.
BFSUF: He's not sick! He Has ASTHMA.(And apparently denied his prescribed inhaler for a great many moons)
Me: Anyway, I'm going to ask if you could keep a bit of a distance from us.
BFSUF: We'll walk where we WANNA walk.
Me: Looks like my wife has moved far enough away from your family now, so whatever.
Afterward he called his grimy-faced, pocket-picking orphan to him and told her to mind her distance in the native tongue of White Trash, but Come The Fuck On. How you gonna talk to me like that?
I honestly wanted to beat the shit outta him. Might have even said so out loud a couple times. But what would that accomplish? I'd only get covered with his coat filth and Their Family Smegma. Which would prolly kill Brenda for sure. If not me.
While Band I warmed up in our car, we noticed he walked up to a rusty minivan across the street. Where he warmed his kids. AND SPOKE TO A WIFE WAITING IN THE CAR.
A wife you say? The children's mother...? Oh ho ho. Oh ho HO ho hohhhhhh.
I waited for the man and kids to leave, then casually Pokeyed up the block, crossed to the other side, sauntered back and waved at her through her window. She opened her door.
Me: Sorry to bother you, ma'am. But I feel compelled *placing hand on my chest* to tell you what your husband said to me.
Me: You see, my wife has breast cancer.
Me: They found it in one breast, but when she had a double mastectomy in December? They found it in both.
Her: Oh no.
Me: Today's a good day for her since she's started chemo, so I've brought her out today. We weren't aware your son had asthma, but....
Halfway through the story, I looked into this woman's eyes and realized she was essentially drinking me in with her soul. Here she was--sitting in a car, not where she wanted to be at the time, marginalized by her spouse to at least SOME extent. While hearing from a man who only wants to do what's right by his One and Only. Who'd be there when it mattered most. Whatever issues she may have had with him? I'd just driven a double-tanker of gasoline to her and said Here! Light him on fire with this!
Me: ...as a representative of one woman *gesturing to my car* to another, I thought you should know.
Her: Thank you.
As soon as BFSUF got back to his car? She laid into him. It wasn't overly demonstrative. There wasn't arm-flailing and screaming (at least that we could hear) or physical drama. But the way BFSUF looked at ME throughout. Mouth agape. Shaking his head now and then to his wife in attempted denial. But that Oh Shit look when something Deeply Horrid you've said gets repeated back to you.
And now his mother will know. And her friends will know. And her family will know.
And he will ALWAYS be an Unfeeling Beast, unworthy of Breathing Air 'mongst Decent People.
I'd say we're About Square.