Chronicles of the Wayward Moot

WELCOME TO THE MOOT, oh world-wanderers and word-whisperers. After two years of Peace Corps. After 2,200 miles on the Pacific Crest Trail. What. Comes. Next?

3/11/2005

This headline, which accompanies an anecdote about the woman whose flesh and brains were almost splattered onto me this morning, could end up being longer than the actual story, but that's okay because as long as you read through this, you'll probably take the few extra seconds to read what actually happened below, which is quite long enough for my blog to upload the special "makes your computer only go to websites of office supply vendors FOREVER" virus.
I was waiting to get onto the Metro this morning, standing near the edge of the platform. There were a number of other people around. The train approached, and when it was about 80 feet away, some woman, whose bag was sitting on the bumpy part of the platform, bent over to pick it up. As she bent over, her head most definitely crossed over the edge of the platform and was firmly occupying the airspace that would in less than a second be forcefully annexed by a public transportation vehicle weighing several hundred, if not several thousand tons. Her hands fumbled for the strap of her bag as the sun-stained air on the platform whooshed from the influence of the boxy train's rapid intrusion. Then two fingers gripped the fabric, tugged, and she stood upright. Her head swung as if fighting against invisible molasses back across the vertical plane that delineated about-to-go-to-work space and about-to-be-violently-decapitated-all-over-a-crowd-of-strangers space. It was over in a couple of seconds. No warning toot from the train operator. No good-natured tug from her fellow platform people. No shriek of terror from me. Just a narrow miss, a glimpse of a gruesome death avoided, like the sampling of a flavor at an ice cream shop that doesn't please the appetite. "Not just yet," the reaper said. "I'll wait until my stomach settles. You've got to be in the MOOD for this kind of ice cream."

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