Thursday, May 7, 2009

Stapleguns in Action

Errands in the Castro on a bright afternoon, and a crop of new fliers has sprung up like mushrooms after the recent rains. On 18th Street while I was taking a couple of these pictures a friendly tanned man came up to me and asked, "Do you live around here?"

Luckily (or unluckily) I am past the age where a question like this needs to be examined for sub-text. "Yeah," I said, smiling back in a cordial but neutral manner.

"Well can you tell me if there's a nice restaurant around here where they serve lunch outside and you can smoke?"

I thought for a minute and then named a couple within a block or two and described them a little.

"You see, I'm off a ship," the man told me, "and I've never been in California before. I'm supposed to be in Mexico but they brought us here instead because of the swine flu."

"You can smoke anyplace in Mexico," I said.

"But I had no idea it was so beautiful here," the man said.

"You picked a good day."

The bartender on the far right has a big old staple lodged in his side above the hipbone (click to examine) that looks like a radical new form of piercing. Maybe it will catch on.