by Peter Freyne
An honor to be replaced in the print edition this vacation week by the one and only David Sirota. First met David when he was a [young] press secretary for a certain Vermont congressman with a Brooklyn accent. Thanks, David.
And here's something a little different. Marie Claire, pictured with her dad Tim Whiteford,a St. Mike's prof, manages Speeder & Earl's on Pine Street to payher bills. But at the moment, she's on one of those month-long other-side-of-the-world vacation trips to visit a friend in India, notIndiana the state, but India the country - you know, where Gandhi preached a gospel of nonviolence.
We knew Marie Claire inherited some of her Scottish father's musicaltalent - Tim's the organizer of Richmond, Vermont's Celtic New Year -but the young lady picked up some writing talent somewhere as well, asevidenced by her entertaining online reports from India posted on herMySpace.com blog.
Here's a taste:
... you find your breaking point and pass it.
...when the taxi driver is trying to rip you off and tells you no he can'tput the meter on because it's broken and you've heard that line ahundred times you look at him and yell "THAT'S A LIE!" and you can tellhe knows it by the succeeding gleeful peals of laughter.
... your snot is black. one day in Delhi and your snot - is - black. we won't even discuss the q-tips in the garbage can.
...your rickshaw driver lets you off a block early because the street isheavily congested with traffic. due to a wedding. complete withgroom-on-horse, marching band, hand-held lamps powered by a generatoron a wagon, dancing indian men a la Elaine from Seinfeld.
...fifteen minutes after noting (out loud) the bad teeth and annoyingindoor smoking habits of the large and curiously well-groomed party ofBrits seated next to you at dinner, the restaurant manager stands upand announces to the dining room at large that it is their distinctpleasure this evening to welcome the mayor of London and hisentourage. whoops.
... oh well, as you sit and enjoy theevening's "entertainment" hired in his honor, you become certain thatthe belly dancer who is now gyrating around him while he tries to enjoyhis meal is making him much more uncomfortable than your verbalfaux-pas, which he probably didn't hear anyway.
... i hope.
... you really want to go to the beach. good thing you're heading there tomorrow!