We flew out to Vancouver a day early, it is our tradition when travelling to lecture in the winter to travel a day early so that should there be heavy snows in Toronto we have a day's grace to get where we need to be. The added benefit is that, as I get older, I have an additional day to adapt to the time zone change. The weather Gods were with us and we could travel unimpeded - so we had a day to enjoy the city. But from the get go, I didn't feel comfortable in my own skin, I quietly listened to what went on around me, quietly watched how people moved in the world, and I had questions ...
So, Why ...
why does the woman who serves us breakfast know so much ... like she knows ...
about Britney Spears going into hospital for psychological evaluation
about Britney's dad getting control of her money
about Heath Ledger and his relationship with an unidentifiable Olsen
about his ex wife and daughter - and how they are handling the tragedy
about Victoria Newman coming out of her coma on the Young and the Restless
about Jack and Gloria now living together
but she didn't know
how to look me in the eye when talking
how to take the order from me not Joe
how to include me in her conversation with Joe about the weather and where are we from
about how to simply treat someone in a wheelchair as a customer
And then there was the guy at the corner store, all cool and decked out in teen fashion - the right tattoos in the right places, the right piercing in the right spot ... he knew a lot too ... he knew ...
about the Giants winning the Super Bowl
about how everyone else bet on the Patriots
about how the Fiest song was lame
about Obama was WAY cooler that Clinton
about how the Canadian dollar made shopping in Seattle 'bitchin'
about how to get his girlfriend 'ready' on Valentines day ...
but he didn't know
that people could hear him when he talked
that the word 'Retard' just isn't ok to say
that name calling isn't cool it's stupid
that there was a disabled guy in the store hearing that kind of language
How come people know so much these days. So much about strangers, so much about the affairs of pop stars and a foreign nation ... but they don't know how to interact or be respectful to those who are a tad different?
Maybe it was the day.
Maybe it was the time change.
But it was a long day out in the real world.