Every now and again I receive incontrovertible proof that I don't think like most other people. The continuing popularity of gluing oneself to a tv screen or metal bleacher seat in Talladega, Alabama, in order to watch other people drive automobiles, the willingness of so many to listen to right-wing demagoguery on radio and tv, and America's continuing fascination with wine snobbery ("One wine is softer, subtler and more approachable, and the other is tight and lean with concentrated fruit character and oak to age" is something I just copied and pasted from a wine review site, and I beg you to remember they are talking about fermented grape juice here!) ("approachable," for crying out loud!) are all mysteries to me, yet I'm in a tiny minority here. It's ok. I just need to remember to be a little subtle and not reveal my incongruence with most of the world. Maybe I am the only one in the neighborhood who worries about the efficacy of an eyeglass operation in the shopping center up at the corner - the sign says "Professonal Vision" and I worry about how good they can be with one "i" missing.
Take the other day, for instance. I was nuking my lunch in the staff break room - a truly delicious Lite Gourmet Salmon Mediterranean - and Family Feud was blaring out of the tv. "Name something that people are always running out of during a party!" cried the host, who used to be Mr Peterman on Seinfeld and before that was Dr Grainger on Young & Restless. Now he's a quizmaster, and he asked a good question. Others in the kitchen hollered out their answers ("Beer!" "Ice!" "Plastic cups!") and then when I gave my answer, I got the slightly-raised eyebrow, head tilted askance glance because my response to what people are always running out of at a party is "The back door." It was pointed out to me that perhaps I attend the wrong kind of party.
As previously noted, I wear red sox every day and I love to wear stocking caps in cold weather. Would I be more properly attired in dark sox? Why would anyone be looking at my ankles? And the stocking cap keeps my ears warm. A fedora will not do that, since all it does for your ears is keep them in the shade. But Justin Timberlake struts around in a fedora and everyone is breaking their neck to get one atop their head. At least it's not a beret, which covers nothing but the crown of the melon, doesn't shade your eyes or even warm your ears, but Frenchmen, beatnik artists and soldiers wear them all the time.
As long as I'm doing a cheapo version of GQ here, attention young men who wear their pants down around their kneecaps: this is not an original look. Say hi to Grand Ole Opry legend David "Stringbean" Akeman:
Now, out of all the young men who dress like that, how many of them do you think would enjoy String's blend of good old mountain music? I like it, although he's been gone since 1973, but when I try to tell young guys about The Bean, they give me that same look I got in the lunchroom.
Now I'm wondering if the name of the guy above who supports car #3 in its efforts to encircle a track 500 times is "Harry Bachman." These are the things I keep in mind.