Friday, December 22, 2006

Waiting for Guffman. Actually, we're not waiting for Guffman. We are sitting at the gate at FTL waiting for the plane to Dallas, from which we expect to connect to a flight to Austin. We are here very early, because we worried about Christmas week crowds. But we beat them easily, so here we sit. We all know how Carol is about getting to places early. (Sigh)

It's not all bad, because, among other things, a busy airport is a great place to people watch and to eavesdrop. Down the concourse a bit is an American flight loading for Port au Prince. It must be full, because there is a big line of people, most all of them apparently Haitians. They are well dressed and obviously able to afford a trip back home for Christmas, back home to the poorest country in the hemisphere, but there they are, having somehow made their way to America and made their way. God bless them and God bless America.

Here in our waiting area and down a few seats from us was, until momenttn ago, a policeman from the Broward Sheriff's Office ("BSO" to us S. FL folks). He had been speaking on the cellphone, and is a loudmouth. He was sitting there blaring out his conversation for quite some time, and it made me wonder whether he is on a break or simply goofing off. I could not help but hear what he was saying, and what I heard makes me think he is the sort of person who would goof off and take every advantage he can of whatever perks he can claim from his government job. I have to remember that there are policemen like Jack Dewhurst, who would be exceptionally good whatever he did, and this BSO type cannot be taken to characterize all of them.

He must have been speaking to another policeman. They were apparently going down a list of fellow officers, gossiping like a couple of old . . . well, I was going to say "biddies" but that is terribly not PC and I want now to take the opportunity to apologize.

Anyway, one person they discussed was someone who is about to retire. "His wife will keep on working," the loudmouth said, "she has a few years to go. . . He needs to get himself a girl friend, someone to play with while his wife is teaching school." There was no irony in his voice. I think he really meant it.

They kept on the subject of retirement. He said his own wife wants to quit work. "I told her that we would have to cut back on some of our luxuries: the yard man, the housekeeper, the pool service. She said, 'Why?' I said we want to continue to live comfortably and we can't keep those other people working for us if she stops work. . . . I straightened her out. She's not retiring before I do."

He finally finished his 20 plus minute call, got up and swaggered away. Carol allowed that if she were married to him she would kill him.


Carol, you can retire whenever you like. But I would prefer that you skip the boyfriend.

(This post written on 12/21 at about 0830)

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