Saturday, April 19, 2008

Scary Sights of Urban America

My first English composition professor taught us, that when telling stories always give the weather. I think this is a good place to start this blog. For those of you experiencing bitter winters skip the rest of this paragraph. Keep in mind that I reside in Miami, Florida. The afternoon of this story it was about 72 degrees, sunny with a light breeze. That is about as cold as it will be for the next 6 months here.

I got off work and started driving to pick up my daughter, Cassie. I turned on to Biscayne Blvd. For those of you from out of town, it’s a main business thoroughfare in downtown Miami. For those of you in New Orleans, I would compare it to Airline Highway/Drive. While the street is being revived recently, it has a rather disreputable past. As I drove down the street I imagine I added to the local color.

It had been an unsettling day. A student had been rather difficult. Keeping the rest of the class on task was difficult for the rest of the day. I needed to let off some steam. My brother had gotten me a Sirius radio as a gift about two years ago. I was listening to channel 8 (The Big 80s), as I drove to pick up Cassie. Now, dear reader, I have to ask you to do something impossible for the rest of this piece. I want you to close your eyes and imagine the picture as it unfolds. Well, it’s not impossible if you can get a friend or spouse to read it to you.

I needed to blow off steam from a difficult day at work, and I was listening to the music of my youth. While on Biscayne “Come on Feel the Noise” by Quiet Riot came on the radio. This was very popular when I was young and it brought a smile to my face. So as it was playing I turned the volume of my radio up to about 8. I then proceeded to fully unroll the windows (not necessarily smart in that neighborhood). Here again, dear reader, If you can get someone to read this to you, imagine this sight rolling down the street. A man in his mid-thirties, balding, windows down, going down the street with Quiet Riot blaring from his 4 door Buick. There are scary sights in urban America but that might have been the scariest.

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