Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The Sight I Can't Unsee

It's been way too long since our humble little blog has ventured into the, shall we say, scatological, and probably even longer since we've shared an adventure from the road. I don't want to lose our edge, let any of you loyal readers down in terms of topics for future therapy sessions, or let Gianna off the hook. It's been awhile since she's posted and maybe a rapid slide into the gutter might serve as encouragement for her more genteel musings on Book Land.
Going nowhere fast.

I just entered the travel portion of my selling season for the Spring 2015 list. There are some great books coming and it's a pleasure visiting my assorted bookstore pals around my territory. Happy thoughts, etc. I spent Monday and Tuesday morning in New Orleans, and then planned to drive to Jackson, Mississippi, in the afternoon in order to meet with the Lemuria Books staff at 7 pm. I had about five hours to make the three hour journey, so everything was looking good. At 4:35, I had passed a sign saying that Jackson was ten miles away. No problem. Right?

Then the Law of Liz kicked in. I am the source of all woe and ridiculousness in the universe. I-55 is under construction in this stretch of highway, so most of the exits are closed and there are concrete barriers on either side of the two lanes going each direction. I was trapped, in other words, just as a power line fell across the highway a couple of miles in front of me and the whole interstate shut down. GRINDING HALT. I was fine--I always keep water in my car and I still had a couple of hours before my presentation, and I texted my colleague Toni to let her know that I might be late. Mostly I was bored.
I may be ugly, but I didn't go to the trouble to make a
stupid window sign and then misspell "you're."

A few people in front of me hopped out of their cars, walked across the southbound lanes of the highway (which were empty), and then climbed up an embankment to a gas station along the road that crossed over the highway close to where I was parked. I'm assuming they needed to pee. The woman behind me never once hung up her phone. The man in front of me smoked. I listened to an audiobook and stared out the windows.

And then I noticed that there was a homeless man sitting up underneath the overpass. I hadn't noticed him earlier because he wasn't moving. I did notice him, though, when he stood up. I noticed him even more when he turned around and dropped his pants so that I was looking at butt cheeks. And then he proceeded to poop in front of the stalled rush hour traffic. The man obviously didn't suffer from any sort of body shaming. I was sitting there watching a homeless man poop and thinking 1. I can't wait to tell Gianna about this, and 2. I should take a picture and send it to Toni, and 3. I absolutely am putting this shit on the blog...and then the turd started to slide down the concrete embankment. I'm not kidding. Here's the text conversation I was having with Toni at the time:

Coincidentally, a truck full of Port-a-Potties drove across the overpass about two minutes after the Great Pooping of 2014, providing a perfect example of my biggest pet peeve about the South: they are always late for everything. After a good ten minutes, the man did finally cover his cheeks with the pants around his ankles and eventually walked up the side of the highway. He could walk away from the sight. Sadly I could not.

And now I've shared the story with the world. You're welcome.

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