The midday sun is harsh and bright above the city's veins of asphalt and concrete, and wind cuts through a cloudless sky. It courses through trees and leaves and alleyways; it forms whirling pockets of litter and debris scattered along the curb.
I sit in a tiny world of stainless steel, leather, glass, vinyl and rubber. Traffic lights mindlessly run through a rigamorale from red, green, and red again.
We humans use red to mean stop. To mean danger. Red cuts through all culture and language barriers and finds a simple understanding between people - the color of oxidized blood is what you'll see if you fail to heed our red warnings.
From the sidestreets and parking lots they come, wave after wave of them, like locusts through a famine-struck farmland: The graduating class of 2002, released from shackle and bondage of mandated sub-par education, now considered a part of the educated class, members of the intelligentsia, these former students who are now in the process of erasing every bit of useless trivia they allegedy 'learned' during their studies.
And I see them as they amble past or sit in traffic alongside me, row upon row upon pretty row of nameless generic blonde beauty, simple and unremarkable faces, with hair carefully dyed and cut to be indistinguishable from any other.
And I think, Henry Ford would be disturbed. And I think, a mass-produced generation. And I think of Huxley and his brave new world that has such people in it.
And I think: Begun the clone wars have.
And their equally vacuous boyfriends, Epsilons all, with bleached tips and baggy Adidas pants, blaring hard core music from their white Cameros, their Korn and Tool and bloody Linkin Park; I'm staring into space which happens to be the direction of their assembly-line-manufactured girlfriends, and they go into Macho Mode. They give me their best dirty look, a laughable attempt at a sneer on their blank young faces, a nonverbal challenge. And a boast: I've got her, and I've got this car, and you haven't.
All this, they communicate across open lanes and stretches of asphalt, without speaking.
And I'm thinking, gear down there, Big Shifter. I'm thinking, you've got the wrong idea.
I'm thinking, but don't challenge me. I'm thinking I'd almost like to see them do more than talk big, because I'm thinking about the katana in the back seat of my car and how I'd cut them from crotch to sternum like a rainbow trout.
But that would prove nothing, get me nowhere, and while I'd like to see some of them finally put in their place, I'm not the one to do it.
They are, after all, the leaders of tomorrow, full of bright potential and gloriously sailing into the shiny horizon of the future, and the sunlight reflections off the ranks and files of Mustangs, Cameros, Jeeps, and Explorers, all meticulously chromed and polished to a mirror finish, hurts my eyes.