Hippified freak…

A neanderthal man was sitting in his old, oil burning, gas guzzling truck with the window down, sucking down the nicotine and tar of a Marlboro deep in his lungs when he looked up and saw me crossing the parking lot. I met his gaze as I turned 360 degrees and hit the lock button on my keyfob and watched my lights flash.

I was headed for Trader Joe’s, in search of something to snack on that was healthy as I road tripped to take photos in the rain.

I had parked my little orange KIA Soul four spots down from the truck. I looked out of the corner of my eye, not turning my head, and pondered just how the heck someone could get into something so high off the ground without a step stool at least. I could feel the vibration under my feet as the truck’s engine rumbled erratically before the man tapped the gas to keep it from dying. My only thoughts were how much he needed to take a lesson in auto mechanics, or maybe his “woman” could save some cash for a timing light and the truck owner’s manual for his Christmas present. Oh how I wanted to turn and ask him if he knew that his timing was retarded, literally. Was he worried that his engine was knocking? Or…by lowering the spark advancement was he trying to lower the heat produced, which lowers nitrous oxide? Did he retard the timing to pass an emissions test?

Why does my brain tangent so? I enter the store and in my mind I can see the crank shaft moving the piston up just after the intake of fuel and air, creating compression. Then I imagined the spark just before the dead of center (when the piston reached the apex of its stroke) forcing the piston down from the combustion of the fuel and air…

More digression… the three elements of fire…Oh…I wonder if spark plugs use the same metal as what is in a ferrocerium survival stick? Is ferrocerium the same as the metal that ignites under water and does not extinguish? What’s that called?? Magnesium, but it must contain oxide, wait, your body need magnesium! I wonder if its just magnesium or magnesium oxide? Isn’t that used for heartburn? Wait…mom and I just talked about her aches and pains…I need to check out her vitamins and the Vemma…see if we need more magnesium in our diets. Costco sells magnesium, Oh and while I am at Costco I need more coffee beans. mmmmmm coffee……

Maybe I should stop and get gas and run in and get a double shot, caffeine would be wonderful right now and something for this head before it pounds any harder.

As I walked out of Trader Joe’s, with herb and spice popcorn in a bag and a bottle of water I was snapped back to my unscientific self with the sound of that damnable truck, still rumbling and having its throttle pumped to stay alive.

I heard the neanderthal man holler. I guess my name is Hey You! I looked up and met his gaze once more as he mouthed something I could not hear over his music. Deciding not to waste my voice on someone who cannot hear me anyway I mouthed “excuse me?”

He lowered his music and leaned his head out of the window “I said you are a f**king hippified freak.”

I smiled, said thank you and left in my car. Maybe his woman should also buy him a dictionary for Christmas too.


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