Thursday, August 16, 2007

shouting matches

i dared to walk home today with 15 pounds of cat food and a lumbering scratch post in hand. the heat and humidity made outdoor exertion unpleasant.

in the distance i heard a chorus of rhythmic shouting from two different locations from the street. a disgruntled man standing by a newspaper stand shouted "fat pig" to which the object of his inflammatory remarks said "dirty disgusting" the name calling involved taking turns. it sounded like an engine. "dirty disgusting", "fat pig", "dirty disgusting", "fat pig", "dirty disgusting", "fat pig".

the female involved in the shouting match, a proprietor or employee of a small nearby store, stood by the open entrance to her shop. she was strategically positioned to swiftly escape behind a lock door if the match became physical. it appeared as if neither one intended to retreat verbally as both were committed to having the last word. their fading voices blended into the city sounds as i moved northward. the rhythmic dance of their name calling reminded me of school yards where children often first learn to say cruel words and to exclude each other from their games.

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