It seems to me that my time here ranges on extremes a lot of times, meaning I either have a wonderful experience or something really sets me a few steps backwards in life. Seattle is a range of the good, the bad, and the weird for me.
I didn’t write anything last week because I felt terrible. While I love living alone, I hate being alone and sick. It’s the whole misery loves company scenario I suppose, but I definitely would love someone to be awake with me at 3am when I’m coughing so hard that I make myself throw up, even if just for the sake of some company.
After googling doctors offices under my insurance plan in the wee hours of the morning, I caved in and took a day off of work last week to get some meds to get me feeling better. All of my research could not have foretold that I would watch the man who would be my doctor that day roll up, park his massive truck with the vanity plate JOCKDOC, and mosey in as if that was completely acceptable.
I wondered if the “Jock” on his license plate referred to his preference for diagnosing the injuries of athletes or whether he was a massive sports fan himself. I decided either way I spun it, he wasn’t the ideal person I wanted on the other end of the stethoscope. I would prefer GEEKDOC, or MEDWHIZ, or NOBEDSIDEMANNERBUTDIANGOSINGGENUIS, however I realize that would take up too many characters. But I was in too deep, and I didn’t know where another doctor’s office was, so I took my chances and let JOCKDOC give me some codeine so my lungs could get some relief.
But then the uptick of my week came when I went to a trivia night with some friends, and we finally came in 2nd place after months of falling into categories of either 3rd place or second to last (this has happened several times, and it isn’t the worst fate as we do win a pitcher of beer for not being the worst team in the running).
Life was good again. I took a hardhat tour of a new apartment and got approved for it, so there’s a good chance I’ve lined up a new place to live next year, which is a serious weight off of my shoulders. It seemed my luck was on my side.
Then things started to take a turn. The bus routes got switched up so now I have to trek almost a mile to catch my bus to work. I should be grateful for the workout and to enjoy the nice weather, but when you are notoriously running five to ten minutes behind in life, having to hike a mile to your nearest bus stop ends with me missing the bus at least once a week.
There was a girl at my bus stop who insisted on singing her heart out along with the song on her headphones. I wondered if the cough syrup had the side effect of making me invisible, or maybe I was hallucinating. Clearly she wouldn’t be singing if she could see there was only one other human being present. Surely she would know how bizarre and socially unacceptable that seemed.
Then I was chatting to a friend on the way to yet another trivia night (I openly acknowledge that I need a new hobby), when a tall man standing in front of us seemed to be unnerved by the fact that we were talking to each other. He whipped around, his “Human Bus Schedule” pin stuck in his beaten up denim jacket on full display.
I’ve been mulling it over for days, and I still don’t understand what the pin means. I’m also not convinced there is a store that sells it. Who would buy it other than this dude? What does it even mean? I was staring at the pin, convinced it was homemade, and he looked us in the eyes, cleared his throat loudly, said “PSHEEEEWWWW” as if he was a child making the noise of an imaginary laser gun, and then raised his right shoulder up toward his head.
I stood in shock, as he turned back around, and looked at my friend, making sure she was witnessing this level of weirdness unraveling right in front of our eyes. As we tried to keep our cool, we heard a man openly belching at the next bus stop over.
Normally I find bathroom humor hilarious, as I have the maturity level of a child when it comes to things like that. After all, it wasn’t unusual to hear my dad openly belch words and phrases like “My arm” around the house while I was growing up. Supposedly he picked this up from my grandfather, who used to belch the phrase “Hello You.” My grandma thought he was saying “I love you,” so didn’t shut it down because she thought he was at least being sweet with his burping word choice as she had misunderstood it.
I started to laugh as I listened to the guy burp, but then it got old after four rounds, and the Human Bus Schedule started turning around and doing his throat-clearing-laser-imitating-shoulder-twitching tick again. The bus couldn’t come fast enough.
So the good, the bad, and the weird all fell within the same span of a week. But as I’ve learned, the weird is fairly normal around here. It comes with the territory. Just another random week of Seattle living.