Minutes (San Francisco)

July 1, 2009

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  • A small man with a small dog and a large sweater-a fleece really-stands as number one in line at the coffee stall, telling all the kids affectionately about his employees in Hong Kong.
  • A large homeless man sits along the wall of the strip club “Touch the Magic” and watches people as they go into the “T & A Café” next door. With his large sloping back along the bent crumbling wall, it is not entirely clear who is holding up who. His shirt is pulled up onto his face like a cattle rustler, or a criminal, creating an airtight seal around his stink. His eyes, which are all you can see, move quickly at the passerbyes, suspicious that they want to steal his stench.
  • A girl boarding the bus for an early morning nursing program is told by the bus-driver that she didn’t put enough money in the till. She looks confused. He points to a calendar he has above his window in his fantasy cubicle to show her that the date is July 1. She doesn’t understand. He points to a flyer beside it which announces new fares starting July 1. She responds that she too could make a flyer at home, and that doesn’t prove anything. She proceeds to her seat a quarter richer.
  • Two strangers who met on the bus find that they have topaz in common. One explains that she used to sell her topaz all along the west coast, but Monterey and Santa Cruz are the only locations she can recall. He explains that he used to be the biggest topaz distributor in the Midwest. He put his kids through college on topaz. She is wearing mismatched shoes. He mourns that he foolishly thought that topaz would never fade.
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