Thursday, January 24, 2008


Sometimes real life is kinda like a movie.

Take yesterday.

I was working up in North Portland, across the interstate from my own St. John's, on a project that involved doing something called an "infiltration test", which in the City of Portland involves sticking a 5-inch diameter pipe in the ground, (note that it HAS to be a 5-inch pipe, not a 4- or 6-inch pipe, bacause what fun would that be to use a pipe that any Home Depot carries instead of one that you have to go and buy from a specialty fucking well supply store...!!!) filling it with water and sitting around in the chilly January sunshine watching the water level drop.

This is how I earn a living. Sometimes. Trust me, I make up for it on other days drilling hand augers through broken concrete in the freezing rain.

So I'm sitting on the tailgate reading, chilly, contemplating getting in the truck and starting the heater when up drives this woman in a BMW. Nice car. Nicer woman - think "Queen Latifah in an ankle-length leather coat". Terrific shoes. Teh hot and doesn't she know it.

In about a tenth of a second she's out of the car like a mad cat with her tail on fire. "What are you doing here?!" she snaps. Luckily I have the job proposal with me, I show her, she's nodding.

"Okay! Okay! You're good. What do you know about these other ve-hicles?" she's pointing to the three older Chevys and Pontiacs parked on the vacant part of the lot I'm working on. We pretty much both know who belongs to the ve-hicles: the construction crew across the street.

So I gotta admit; I get up to watch the Queen sashay across the street, shouting "You! Yes, you! What's you' name?! Pablo? You belong to this car, Pablo?! 'Cause I got the tow company on the phone right this very minute...!!"

You'd think somebody exploded a Latino Bomb inside the jobsite: suddenly about a dozen hispanic guys are flying out of the uncompleted townhouses to bail their rigs off of the lot they will now be too terrified to park near, much less in.

The Queen comes back with a smile and a little extra oomph in her step, pleased with herself and the fear-up she just put on the naughty construction crew. And, unrepentant male that I am, I enjoyed the sight as much as she enjoyed providing it. You could almost see us both thinking:

"Here comes a HELL of a damn fine woman..."

Off the top of my head, I can't think of anything as pleasing as someone who is just as happy as can be at being themselves, right here, right now.

Yes, ma'am: a damn fine woman.

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