At the back of the hill

Warning: May contain traces of soy, wheat, lecithin and tree nuts. That you are here
strongly suggests that you are either omnivorous, or a glutton.
And that you might like cheese-doodles.
Please form a caseophilic line to the right. Thank you.

Monday, May 21, 2018


When you are waiting for the bus in the morning, you are a target for all manner of people. The diversity of "hunter gatherers" in San Francisco is immense! For amateur psychologists or habitual observers of the human condition, this city is sheer heaven. A gold mine.

"Hey man, you got a cigarette?"

No, I don't. This is a small cigar, and I do not have any more.

I really did not have another one on me, and I just wanted to be left alone with my thoughts. An attack of gout during the night had left me feeling a bit limp -- those sausages were delicious, as were the cheeses, and the roast peppers were extremely nice too, as was the guacamole, so considering what a splendid time I had had heading toward that severely bitchy episode from my right foot, I would definitely do it again -- and I was not quite as forbearing with my diverse fellow Americans as I could have been.

I simply wanted to smoke my cheroot outside the healthclub (triggering all the exercise pustules within), while observing the tykes across the street.
The phrase "no, I don't; this is a small cigar, and I do not have any more" had to be uttered several more times.
The diversity of smokeless people in this city is staggering.
Even among aimless white males.

I noticed that not a single one of them asked the tykes across the street for a fag. Not surprising, because the tykes across the street were all Chinese and less than six years old. That type is not known for any generosity with their cigarettes. Or cigarettes, period. Neither are their maternal relatives, for that matter.
The mothers, and the children, would have looked baffled at the request. "What are these somewhat less than perfectly attired white gentlemen saying? And why do they all seem to be twitchy or staggering?"
The tykes might even have been a wee bit scared.

They were cutest little urks.

In that description you will see a Dutch word: Urk. Plural: Urks (in English), urken, urkjes (with the diminutive ending), urkies (non-standard as well as diminutive). It denotes a tiny child, often affectionately. Those darling little urks would not have liked to be approached for smokes by scraggy-waggy adults. Not that it would have necessarily traumatized them.
But such things can be disconcerting.

As a middle-aged fairly sane white male, I tend to think of these things.
I have warm regard for little Chinese urks. They have certain admirable qualities, such as cleanliness, consideration, and good naturedness, and usually they are even-tempered. Especially when mom is nearby.
From a safe distance they are quite charming.
As well as cute as the dickens.
The urks.

The person behind me on the bus was drinking beer while heading to San Rafael. When another seat became available I moved there.
He did not ask for a cigarette.

My weekend has begun. When next I head to work, on Thursday, I intend to have a bigger cigar and a far worse scowl. Then perhaps no one will bug me while I wait for the bus and observe the urks.

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