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The Mexicana cashier from the bakery comes outside to see what the fuss is about, what’s this candy mess thrown by the door? She can see she’ll have to sweep it up (the white girl insists someone stole her hats). You yourself (coffee, New York Times Magazine, an essay by Rick Harsch) might be that old man who just lifted 2 fedoras off the rack outside the shop, telling the shopgirl that you did pay for them (even as you let the hats lie on the sidewalk table, cringing in your wheelchair, confused seemingly by the whole situation—don’t you need 2 hats?), while the perky teen spouts, “No way! We just opened five minutes ago and I was there the whole time, and no way did he pay! Mom! Mom! The hats are over here!” She rushes down the block to return the hats to mom (who hustles the hat rack back inside) but I was thinking the blue felt job isn’t even your color and doesn’t suit you. As soon as the old guy gets a chance, he scoots around the corner of the bakery—bells clanging as the guard rails descend—the train approaches the crossing. The old man is gone—he’s fled… Maybe you got your own confusions too, maybe you are recovering from uterine cancer, maybe somebody you care about committed suicide this spring, maybe you saved someone’s life, maybe you had dreams that evaporated in the daylight or you built a whole other life that’s gone now. But, see, what’s important here in the newspaper is either a plane crash in San Francisco, a blue felt fedora, a small mess beside the door (which the cashier swept into a pile) or the cinnamon rolls.

dirigi9ble postcard

July 2013