Tuesday, June 28, 2011

When it rains in June

"...Wesley Crusher."

“What the fuck are you talking about?!” bellowed the woman in stalkings as rain poured down around us. I should have seen that coming.


A tropical depression made it pour today, which just goes to show you that the San Francisco weather god has it in for us. Weird things happen when it rains here in June, and people don’t seem to know what to do with themselves. Two days ago it was beautiful and warm and college kids filled the Park for Alice’s Summerthing after the Pride Parade, but now citizens that had for months mastered the art of dressing for this City’s fickle winter weather strode about grappling with their coats and upturned umbrella’s.

Three o’clock rolls around and my eyes are about to fall out of my head because I’m stuck in an office with two flickering halogen bulbs and a full-spectrum lamp as bright as the sun (which I guess was the point, in retrospect). My left hand is soar from repeating the same keystrokes for 5 hours, and I pulled a muscle in my leg while attempting funky office stretches to stay awake :| Time for coffee.

I grab my jacket and frown because it isn’t a coat. Of course I did not plan on it raining today – because it’s June 28th and it should be hot by now! – but my coworker offers me her “oversized umbrella”. I happily accept the gift and prance happily out of the office into the damp air.


Ah, sipping warm coffee by a full-length rain-speckled window listening to weird Starbucks jazz, how I have missed you. I watch as a man in an expensive pinstriped grey suit and Oakleys in the rain gestures like a magician as part of some elaborate story he is telling to a very cold and wet woman in a purple dress. 

"Hey, what the hell are you doing here?!" My regular barista shouts to me across the cafe. "Don't you have to be at work or something?"
"I work for the government," I retort dismissively, returning my curious attention to the couple. "We don't work, we just drink coffee. Doesn't matter where I do it." . . . . 

The man holds the same pose, one arm outright, palm out in front, the other arm held above his head, palm to the sky, flashy smile.

The woman stares for a moment and shakes her head, and just then an umbrella soars down the brick sidewalk and is whisked right towards the couple. His hands clench, his shoulders rise, his lips purse, and just before the item collides with the woman, the man lunges forward and drives one clenched fist down into the airborne umbrella. It crumples into a broken mess on the ground beneath them, and he stands victorious over his enemy. He turns to the girl in the dress, smiles his flashy smile and points to his prey, and the woman shrieks and claps and kisses him on the cheek.

But wait! They suddenly turn to look up Market Street in terror, and from around the corner of the café a very large black woman comes barreling toward them at an impossible speed, waving her arms and screaming, “that was my goddam umbrella, you son of a bitch!” The two turn and run, with the fury right on their heels.


As I carefully walk back to my office under what can only be described as a tent, two legs enter my limited forward field of vision. I stop to avoid a collision, and so do the feet. I step to my left, so do the feet. I step to my right, so do the feet. To the left, to the right, to the left, we do the familiar shuffle. I pause and collapse my umbrella to see what the deal is, and before me stands a twenty-something woman. I stare dumfounded in awe.

“Jeesh, ‘scuse me dude!” she says not-so-much-under her breath.

I cannot help myself, it is so utterly a matter of fact that the truth simply rolls out of my mouth. “OHMYGOD YOU LOOK JUST LIKE WESLEY CRUSHER.”

“I… huh?.... Wesley the what?”

“Star Trek.”


“The sissy kid from Next Generation!” I continue staring. “Except you have long hair!” It’s like meeting a celebrity, but by some audacity of the universe the celebrity has inexplicably changed sexes and put on some bad make-up. “This is so weird…”

“Yeah. It’s also raining.”

“It is.” סּ.סּ

“Ok...” o_O “………….Soooooooo-“

“….but that’s not the weird thing…”

“Um, K. ...what is the weird thing?”

“That you look just like Wesley Crusher!”

“What the fuck are you talking about?!!”

Stone-faced, she glares straight at me and I realize that I am now “that guy” on Market Street. I fumble for words, but now of all times they escape me. “Er, uh...sorr-“

She interrupts, pointing a single aggressive finger at my chest, and speaks sternly. “That kid was a twerp, and a little bitch. He almost ruined the whole show. I look nothing like him.” She turns on her heel and storms away.

I get back to my office, shake off the umbrella and leave it in the meeting room to dry, and slouch back into my own chair. The lights flicker excitedly for several seconds as if to welcome me back.

“Wow, this is a pretty weird day,” my supervisor observes. I lean over my desk to peek through the doorways, and I see her staring out of the window at the clouds rolling by. I roll back into my chair. I gulp the last of my coffee and return to my stack of binders.

“Yup, pretty weird.”

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