“The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring
Porn and Cat Food
Cecil Thompson had some meetings with vendors scheduled all over town so he spent most of the day driving around. There wasn’t anything to see except the other drivers stuck in traffic all around him, moving slowly in lockstep to… somewhere.
Right after dawn he was creeping along in six lanes of rush hour traffic with some guy stuck next to him in an old clunker Chevy. The passenger window was open and no more than three feet from Cecil’s face. The guy was reading a magazine. The morning sun cut in at an angle so Cecil could clearly see his chubby face, his ponytail, and the the magazine. He tore off a plain protective cover and the title was BOOB-A-RAMA.
Traffic was really slow so Cecil was stuck beside him. Ponytail dude looked at that magazine for a while, holding it this way and that, then set it down and picked up another one. Tore its cover off too. And then another and another.
Cecil thought, “How pitiful can you get?” This is at seven in the morning. Ponytail dude must have stopped off at some slimy convenience store for coffee, donuts, and a big pile of porn. Now he’s cruising around, reading (well, not really reading) while he drives. Cecil felt filthy just sharing the same tarmac with him.
And who actually buys porn magazines anymore? Shouldn’t he have at least a tablet? Nothing worse than an old-school pervert.
Cecil guessed he was just getting ready to face his day.
Later, Cecil pulled up behind a fire engine. Red truck, silver ladders, yellow brown hoses. No lights, no siren, stuck in traffic, going nowhere very, very, slowly. Cecil felt a little sadness, assuming the truck was returning back from some fire, some emergency; he hoped everyone was alright.
Then he noticed the back of the truck. The little running board back there that extra firemen can ride on was piled high with bags. At least twenty bags of kitty litter and maybe five jumbo bags of cat food. The truck was returning from a visit to the pet store.
The firemen can’t leave their truck, in case of a call, so they have to take it out to the store with them. On a mission of mercy for the firehouse cat.
Cecil don’t know why, but he found that even more comforting than he found the ponytail guy with the porn magazines disturbing.