I had to go to the post office to pick up a package yesterday. It's below freezing now, and still not a snowflake in sight, though it is incorrect to say that it is too cold to snow. So: hat, gloves, scarf, coat, sweater, all of which have to be shucked the second you enter any overheated building, which is all of them. Oh but first: day before yesterday we went to see the Nutcracker, we meaning me and Squire because as if Friar's going to sit still for a whole hour without a cigarette. There were women apparently equally unprone to theater, wearing maybe their old prom dresses, tighter than they'd remembered, summery shimmers of sleevelessness, winter boots on under. The first hour was boring as hell for me but the second hour they had this delicious group doing the "Arabic Dance" in some Thai costume looking thing (Oh, Brno, you're so cute when you try) and they were like the Bodies exhibits, if the bodies had had skin on and been dancing around; it was like: the human body is a work of art. And then the "Russian Dance", the guy (Takeru Shimizu) whipped around the whole stage in I think grand jete en tournant, and he looked so totally joystruck while he did it that it was all you could do to not stand up and applaud, and in fact some people did. So that was day before yesterday.
Then so back to yesterday: I went to the post office and I was thinking about how easy it is to get bogged in irritation in this weather and standing in line at the post office with my cranky face on because it's hot and stuffy and I'm holding my hat and scarf and coat but still sweating and nobody's happy and I think, okay, you know, I'm PICKING UP A PACKAGE. It's the holidays and somebody sent me a present. This is hardly torture. So I smiled to myself, and I smiled at people, and I got four people to smile back (two wrys of the "here we are, all standing in line" variety; one sincere; and one a kid who was already pretty much smiling but I'll take it) and so this is what I did for the remainder of the day, which was two lines at the post office, one line at the drug store, one line at the grocery store, two trams, and a stop at the wine bar, was let people in line in front of me if they were older or looked more miserable, and smiled at people until they smiled back. I have no doubt I looked like an idiot and it's not like I'm making new year's resolutions here, but social experiments are always fun and more so if they don't involve electric shocks.
ME: Put your hand on my back.
HE: Aie! Hey! You need to tell me when you're going to do things like flip over backwards.
ME: Well, I didn't want you to actually hold me. I just wanted you there for orientation. So I could figure out which way was up.
HE: You could know which was is up by standing up.
ME: I like seeing it all mess up and then making it right.
I am sure we can all agree that "It was the wrench, with the revolver, in the study" might have even thrown Drs. House and Holmes for a loop.