Wednesday, January 07, 2004

Also, I ventured into Tower Records at lunch, to pick up Arcadia of My Youth on DVD. I should add parenthetically that cartoons featuring Captain Harlock are not geeky in any way, so just cool it.

Anyway, I was waiting in line behind a woman who had a double pram with two baby units in it. That was well and good. Unfortunately, the Tower cashier employed the usual Tower stratagem of not calling anyone else to help her despite the fact that there are seven people in line and she's never seen a traveler's check before in her life ever. Still, I am used to this at Tower, and when I'm in line I find little ways to distract myself, like picturing an elaborate musical comedy with all the main roles played by hermit crabs.

The problem was that the guy behind me in line was RIGHT behind me. Like I could feel him breathing on me. That kind of behind me. It's a strange phenomenon I've noticed in Southern California: people have no concept whatsoever of personal space. I tried moving around a little bit, veering off to the side of the line, and this guy stayed on me like a damn remora. Worse than a remora, really, because he didn't do anything vaguely helpful or symbiotic, like picking mites off my pelt. He just hovered there.

When I was done paying, some ten minutes later*, The guy was blocking my path to get out of the store. I seethed "exCUSE me!" hoping that somehow he would get the message that I don't need any remoras at this stage of my life, but I only succeeded in sounding like kind of a whack job. What would have been the right etiquette in that situation? Damned if I know.

* That's Tower Records Line Time, so I can't be sure how long I was really there. It could have been just a couple of minutes. Maybe I never did get out! Maybe I'm still there, slowly decaying into a small stain on the $2.99 CD stand...right between Gene Loves Jezebel and Herbie Hancock.


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