Monday, March 05, 2007

Walking through America, Inc.

It has finally warmed up enough in this god-forsaken part of the country that I felt the urge to take a walk inthe middle of the day.

I have been stuck inside for seven months with my back totheo nly good window in the office. This would not be so bad if i could swivel around and stare longingly out the window to a world that was better than the grey cubicle i currently dwel, except that my nemisis sits directly between me and the only window.

I have bene caught a number of times staring out the window when he looked up and glared back at me.

"What are you looking at?" he would yelp from across the room.

My momentary peace was shattered and I had to return to staring my computer screen.

Today, though, It was tiem for me to bust out of this lack luster hell hole.

Now, here is the delima with taking a walk while at work. The bulding I toil away at is actually ion and office complex called Rolling Hills Executive Park.

I know three of those four words in the title give you the idea that there would be fields of green grass, open spaces for you to run or frolic or even, at the least, some kind of trail that might get those executive jusices flowing so you could be a productive worker in this American Corporation.

Instead, it is a vile trap. Rolling, seems to be a euphimisim for parking lots. Hills, seems to also mean concrete patio out back. And the elustrious park title seems more to mean stromwater run off area (Avoid during high water - the sign to my park says).

In all reality I work at the Parking Lot Patio Pad Executive Drainage Ditch.

Classy I know. But fuck be to the title as I wa bound a determiend to at least get a little sun on this pastey white skin. I am an indoor kid, for sure, but not today.

As I headed out I went immediatly to the small sidewalk that seems to jut back into the trees - a hiking trail? No, it tured out to be an access path to the drainage basin in my office park. We continued through the grassy area where all the smoker congregate - it is illegal to smoke within 25 feet of an building entrace.

From there I found myself crossing the wide black parking lot that sevrves several buildings.

"You lost?" One motorist asked as I was nearing the end of hte lot

"Nope, jsut out walking,"

"Where?"

There does not need to be a destination you dip shit. Not that htere was anywhere I could go. Subway? The coffee Shop? The liquor Store - i never understod why we had a liquor store on the office campus.

So i went to go wander around in the Liquor Store of a while. It was one of those high-end joints where asking for the Sparks or 40s of Mickey could get you thrown out.

The manager stared me down the entire time I was there. I guess a punk kid wearing jeans and a t-shirt at 2 p.m. in the after noon in one of these stores sreams stick up more than valid customer.

Oh well, the walk must go on. I fianlly decided to walk to the grocery store that is about a mile down the road.

I make this sound like I'm hiking down some country road, but in reality Antioch Road is like walking down Interstate 70 - but this at least had side walks.

I was the only one out there. It was too nice a day to be the only one out there walking around. But, erriely, I was.

Nobody walks around in Johnson COunty. They either drive or make someone esle drive them. It is a county of high and mighty and they don't have time for walks or afternoon jaunts to the grocery store.

The insist that their government build sidewalks everywehere. They want the option of walking or biking or god knows what. They will pay the taxes to build miles apoun miles of sidewalks, but they will never use them. They will never build a neighborhood or shopping mal where people will actually use the sidewalk they paid for.

It is the biggest paradox of a citizenry and it government. The city knows it can save moeny not building a sidewalk down the highway becasue no one will use it. But the soccer moms insist that a sidewalk brings a community together.

The best crime deterent, they say, is community - build the side walk and let the hug-fest begin.

Well, its too late to dig them up, so I guess I'll use them and walk to the grocery store for a box of Mike and Ikes. I'll finish them by the time I get back ot the office, but then again, the Mike and Ikes were not the purpose.

Nobody seemed to miss me when I returned.

I don't know if that is a good thing or not.

1 comment:

Terentia said...

Thanks for writing this.