Observations from a corner table.

*Warning: ADD alert. I bounce around a lot in this one.*

*Napkin One, Side One*
I sit in a MacDonalds in Yonkers, NY as I write this. It is being scrawled on a series of napkins.

Maybe I’m putting the napkin to better use by saving it the indecency  of being smeared across a morbidly obese twelve year old’s grease caked face. Or maybe I do it a disjustice by not allowing it such an end for what it was so intended. I don’t know. It’s been a while since I communed with the Napkin Deities.

I’m on a break from my two teaching tests today. The first only took me an hour and a half of the allotted four hours, so I tried to take a nap in my car. That didn’t work so I came to this shrine of commercialism for a cheap, unfulfilling meal. I’m waiting for them to switch to the lunch menu. The point here is, in seeing all of the females my age, with low pants and short shirts, who are taking these teaching tests, I realize that my kids are going to go through elementary and high school with middle-aged female teachers with tramp stamps.

Might as well be a bulls eye.

Might as well be a bulls eye.

All of them. Pretty much every single girl I saw. Like, 95%. I should have been counting… Fucking gross. (note my disdain).

I never realized how fantastic a place like MacDonalds is to people watch. There’s no bias, really. It’s lower-middle class coming in for an inexpensive meal in an

*Napkin One, Side Two*

expensive time. I can’t say the restaurant that I work at is good for people watching because there’s a certain degree of pretention there, I feel.

One particularly minor note: mohawks, or even worse, faux-hawks, suck. People with them should be hit in the knee with a wiffle-ball bat filled with cement. I know someone who actually had that happen to him. And he lost a tooth when he was punched with brass knuckles. And he’s an orphan. Tough stuff, eh? Makes your life not so shitty, right? True story.

Anyway, the actual reason I wanted to write this is that I want to comment on age and the elderly.

I just got back from getting food. Wow. I will never get used to how rude, inarticulate and just generally offensive some people can be.

Saving grace: a MacDonalds worker saw me struggling to get ketchup when it wouldn’t pump out. She tried to fix it but it wouldn’t work. I told her to not worry about it and thanked her. She just found me sitting in the corner and delivered me a cup o’ the red stuff. And I bet they’re not trained in customer service like that.

Just when you thought MacDonalds couldn’t get any worse for you, not all of their sandwiches have lettuce on them. <shudder> The last shred

*Back of Receipt*

of healthy gone.

“Yo! Tell them to give you a cup tray!” Yelled from across the restaurant. Not “Ask them for a cup tray.” What the hell?

Between my job and sitting here during breakfast, I get to experience a lot of old people. Let me tell you, I do not want to age. I mean, some of these people look like they should have been thirty years in the ground during the Revolution!

*Napkin Two, Side One*

Still kicking around now is just pushing it.

The myriad range of health issues terrifies me, especially because they seem to be inventing new ones every day.

My burger tastes like meatloaf. Not the singer. I am less than impressed.

And I’m crochety enough now, I don’t think the world could take me when I’m old. I really don’t know why they’re so uppity. Because you’ve lived 200 years I should drop everything to cater to you? You’re a person, just like that 40-something guy in line behind you, there’s no reason why I should bow to you and punch him in the throat.

Oh, you fought in every war since Genghis Khan? (Khaaaan!) Well, then you should have even more of an appreciation for equality. You want respect and honor? You get a discount at pretty much every establishment

*Napkin Two, Side Two*

anywhere. And it’s not like people are leaving you out in the woods or on a cliff side for the wolves or the vultures, respectively, like they used to do.

But, the fact of the matter is, maybe I’m so bitter because I’m so worried. With those health problems comes money. Doctors, prescriptions, surgeries, artificial everything. Not to mention you can’t work ’cause you’re too damn enfeebled, so you can’t pay for that very same list of maladies. There’s something sickeningly backwards about all of this.

And it’s not like I don’t have other thing to worry about.

The word is pronounced “ass-k,” not “axe,” you tart.

Meal finished = feel like death. The next hour will be filled with remorse, regret, and the ever-looming danger of shitting, vomitting or some horrible jumbalaya of both.

*Napkin Three, Side One*

Between Delgado and me, we have a near encyclopedic list of worries about life. Money, our jobs, our parents, our KIDS, our country, aliens, monsters, axe murderers, zombies, psychos of any kind, loans, the drummer for Peter Frampton,

We saw this dude live!

We saw this dude live!

and virtually anything else. Oh! The planet! Y’know, just name some random thing and I can pretty much guarantee we’ve worried about it at one point, or can find some reason to be worried about it now.

Wow. When your body literally looks like a pear, maybe you should really consider refraining from partaking in the Golden Arches, my friend.

There is a seven year old, red-headed kid in the booth next to me, staring at me. It’s a cross between cute and I-wanna-punch-him-in-his-little-red-head.

*Napkin Three, Side Two*

I have an hour left. I think I’m going to head back and either read about dinosaurs (Delgado knows what that means, although I am actually reading a book about dinosaurs), or start writing on this story idea I’ve been procrastinating on for the longest time.

“Hey, if you’re getting chicken nuggets, honey mustard is good for dunkin’ it in!” -little red-head kid to random woman with child. He’s redeemed himself. Keep that innocence, kid. Don’t get hit by a car on your bike. (Rescue Me reference for Delgado. He does look a lot like Connor…)

Moral: I think my generation has it pretty tough to grow up in this time. And our kids are going to have it even worse.

~The Cynik


~ by Cynik on August 23, 2008.

One Response to “Observations from a corner table.”

  1. The only redeeming thing about tramp stamps (as they relate to middle-aged teachers) is they can easily be covered up. I think I can forgive stupiditis in young people….goddess knows I can’t very well throw stones after all the stupid shit I managed to accomplish in my day! As long as my kid’s teacher doesn’t have a swastika tattooed on the end of his nose, I’m cool. And it’s good to find another Leary fan — got the first 3 seasons of Rescue Me on DVD.

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