Wednesday, August 24, 2005


It's finally cooled off these last couple of days, and we've opened our windows, letting in cool air, letting in breezes, letting in the neighborhood.

It's late and I can hear the neighbors in their yard yelling, but I can't tell why. Are they mad? Or just exuberant? Or maybe drunk? Or some combination?

I wonder what I'm supposed to do. Do I just ignore it? Do I walk over and ask them politely to quiet down? Do I call the police for such a little thing, simply because I'm afraid to take care of it myself? I fantasize about standing in my darkened window, yelling "Shut up already!" into the anonymous darkness . . .

Since we've moved here, it's been breath-sucking hot and humid. In the morning we walk from our air-conditioned house to our air-conditioned car. We drive to our air-conditioned work where we sit amongst the cubicle walls until it's time to drive our air-conditioned cars back to our air-conditioned home. We're insulated -- cut-off. Now the windows are open and we're all living a little closer.

I worry about it. About the way we can pick and chose who we want to be with. If you bother me, if you're different, if you make me think, and I'm too tired, too apathetic, too threatened, I just turn towards my work, my car, my house and shut you out.

It's less authentic, but it feels like safety. I'm just not sure that's a good thing.