I’m working for the province for six days this July, marking standardized achievement tests for grade nine writing. It’s mentally grueling, but very good professional development and networking, so I’m glad to be involved.
Because the marking sessions take place downtown, I’m taking the city bus to the marking site. I do not drive downtown unless there is absolutely no other choice, particularly since the traffic in the city is incredibly congested right now with summer construction. Also, the parking rates near the building where I mark for the next five days are astronomical; I refuse to pay the cost of a fancy pants lunch in daily parking charges alone. Conveniently, the dollhouse is also a two minute walk from the bus that lands me on the doorstep of the marking building in under eighteen minutes. Public transit is my friend, my friends.
Riding the bus is sort of a variety show on the move; I think I’d pay my fare for the entertainment alone. Today, I saw a potato masher propping a house window open to let the fresh air in, which got full points for originality, and I had a drive by view of yards in violent bloom all over town.
Today the highlight of the trip home, however, was the weirdness of a woman who got onto the bus wearing a very short skirt. A brief outfit isn’t an unusual thing in the summer heat, but this girl was rocking a very strange look. She had a Forrest Gump tattoo. I’m not talking about a little Forrest Gump emblem, or a Bubba Gump shrimp with a pert tail. A nearly life-size portrait of Tom Hanks as Forrest Gump, looking off into the horizon and dreaming of his Jenny, was inked on her upper thigh: in full colour and outrageous detail.
I don’t have any tattoos, mostly because of my intense fear of needles, but I quite like them on other people. To be fair, this Forrest was very well done, speaking as a portraitist and an enthusiastic fan of Mr. Gump. I just can’t determine what would lead a woman to have Forrest emblazoned permanently on her upper thigh.
I think it takes a very special type of person to pull off a Tom Hanks tattoo. It also takes an extra special kind of person to love a special kind of person with a Tom Hanks tattoo on her thigh. Imagine that woman wearing a very snazzy (but short, by necessity) evening dress, and all her date can think when he looks at her is, “We goes together like peas and care-otts.” Can we tell whether he’s referring to the owner of the thigh, or Forrest himself? Maybe it’s better not to know.
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