Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Things that make you go hmm, the blog.

Not quite as cold today, though chilly enough. Warm enough to take a walk on the streets of downtown, as far as Daley Plaza. I like this year’s municipal Christmas tree: lots o’ colorful globes, spheres and balls.

My floor in my office building has two men’s rooms, one—as I tell visitors—full service, the other a simple space with two urinals, a washstand with a mirror, and a dispenser for paper towels. The walls are dim yellow, the light fluorescent, and sometimes the odor-suppressant system, a little box up near the ceiling, hisses and groans as if it’s tired of its lonely job. The right-side urinal has occasional issues with leakage. Some days, you find a Vietnam-shaped puddle under it, snaking out toward, but not quite reaching, the spot from which you conduct your business.

A simple place, as I said. One of thousands of anonymous WCs that serve downtown Chicago. Earlier today, I went in for one of my daily visits, and noticed a crutch propped up against the side of the wall, between the urinals. Not a fancy crutch, and one with some wear on the handle. But it doesn’t matter what kind of crutch: the question it asks, just by being there, is how could someone forget his crutch?

But it’s imaginable. I think I did it myself once, back when I had a broken foot. Toward the end of my recovery, I really didn’t need the crutch much, and took it with me mostly out of habit. So naturally, I wandered off without it at least once, though I remembered quickly and went back for it. Maybe that happened to the crutch I saw today, since it was gone when I returned to the little room later in the day.


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