I started making a list of tangible life goals, and so far they are limited to "puppy!" and "do not get hit by a train" and "who needs goals when Halloween is so close?" the second of which was inspired by the fact that on Sunday night I was on a train and we hit someone.
Last week, I decided to become a foodie. I figured, you know, I really like food. Like a lot. It is time for me to learn how to cook something delicious that isn't peanutbutter and jelly. Although, I fucking dare you out pb&j my ass, because I have chemical equations and shit to prove mine is more savory than yours.
I'm pretty sure that on my way home from the store I bounced through a fatty pothole.
You know when you're cooking something gutsy and lush, and it smells as good as the Food Network looks and words float behind your eyes, words you never use, like "sumptuous" and "resplendent" because really, this sauce? this spicy, harmonic sauce is sumptuously resplendent, and you're convinced pleasant accomplishment smells like this because even the stove is smiling, happy to simmer something so deliciously dreamy?
The solution to cooking failures, of course, is cheap wine, sweatpants, and Battlestar Galactica. Which really made the night a success in the end, because you do not get much cooler than that, and if you dry yourself out with enough wine just about everything you eat after that tastes like Syrah anyway, so you know. Win.
Discovered my car with a flat, shreddy tire on Saturday, so that was peachy. I need to get it fixed by this weekend so I can drive for three hours to see Hot Mess Fraya.
And that is why I had to take the train out to the suburbs for the baby shower on Sunday, and why I was riding the train back into the city that night.
On Saturday night a couple of us went to a haunted house. I had to lead the pack through the fun, and Hanson clutched my arm the entire time, buried into my shoulder, while I reminded her to stone up as we approached every black corner. The best thing about haunted houses is watching people jump with raw, excited laughter. The corpses aren't real.
On the train, no one was excited, but we were all kinds of raw as we sat there locomotionless, pressing against the dark windows as cops with flashlights searched the tracks beneath us, looking for a body. A real body belonging to a real person who laid themselves across the tracks.
Every ten minutes or so the conductor would announce that it shouldn't be much longer, but they had yet to find a body so the search would continue. After an hour, the search expanded to included everything within a three-mile radius of our position. We waited some more.
In my brain, an impressive collective of passengers band together to scour the surrounding miles with torches. We are serious plainclothes investigators and heroes to boot. And in the shadows we find a deep, stalag-filled cave. Our numbers dwindle as the true spelunkers are whittled out of our troupe by a series of complicated puzzle traps, and eventually we slide into the drippy lair of a thin man in a top hat with an evil twirly mustache who hides a crooked sword in his spider-handled cane, and I defeat him in a battle of wits while my comrades liberate his prisoners from their cold, stone cells. And then our search party throws a Search-themed Party.
But we aren't allowed to leave the train. Stupid trainworkers. Ruining my fantasy.
I wanted them to find a mangled body. I wanted it to be someone I knew, but not well, so I could properly mourn and regret not taking the time to know them better. Those are the best people to die. Loved ones hurt, and strangers are eventually forgotten. Way it is.
I wanted them to find a living human being who jumped in the nick of it. I wanted them to find blood tracks leading into a forest, where the survivor lay panting with nonlethal wounds. I wanted it to be an elaborate prank, I wanted it to be a ghost, I wanted it to be a raccoon, I wanted it to be Ashley Judd because I can't stand her movies.
But they found nothing. We probably never hit anything at all.
But I was sure we did, because just before we suddenly slowed, while I was people watching and imagining Bradley Cooper taking pictures of a gruesome murder while Keanu Reeves and Dennis Hopper fight on the roof ("Yeah? But I'm taller."), and replaying that one episode of Homicide where Vincent D'Onofrio gets smashed between the subway and a platform and if they move him, he dies...
So all that is going through my head, and I wonder, If we were to hit someone on the tracks, would passengers feel the impact? and not fifteen seconds later the train comes to a surprise stop and I say out loud, to whoever, "Oh my god, I think we hit someone," and all these people look at me.
But they found nothing.