Wednesday, March 9
I'm waiting for mass transit in Lafayette, eating at this off-brand drive-in fast food joint that resembles a Sonic closely enough that I'm almost convinced it used to be one. Oldies station on the radio, just esoteric enough to actually be a Pandora channel (all the more likely since the Oldies format seems to have been altogether supplanted by Classic Rock and the Greatest Hits of The 80s 90s and Today! while I wasn't looking). One waitress working. Burger and fries. The burger is kind of overcooked and the bun is either toasted a bit too much or just plain stale. The fries are oversalted but hot. This is an effort at a facsimile, but all of it suggests a kind of American authenticity predating any awareness I ever had of Americana or Authenticity as a much-trammeled but ever-marketable concept.
I burned a day today. Not in the sense that you burn one with cigarettes and cheap canned beers in your hand looking at the river roll, but in the sense that you sit there in a room knowing you'll never get this one back and even if it's worth the cost in hours on some kind of spiritual balance sheet, you still ought to be ashamed for letting it go. The stench of new paint and air conditioning on a day it didn't get above 45 or 50 degrees.
I finish my hamburger. Back at the bus stop some guy is loudly pacing, whistling aggressively and sitting down angrily on the bench, banging his shitty-looking BMX bike against the shelter. I start to hate him and then this bus pulls up and he runs up to it and a girl in a red hoodie gets off and they embrace each other with what I choose to read as basically joy, and he puts his bike on the front of the bus and they both get on.