Monday, April 16, 2007

They run and hide their heads

Saturday I was in New Haven, on campus for a speaking engagement (aren't we fancy). It turned out to be a lovely day to see the old alma mater, which is more than I can say for yesterday or today. Anyway, when my duties were done, the fiance and I called a taxi to pick us up outside Battell Chapel, which was where we happened to be standing. (Our intention of walking across Old Campus had been thwarted by some "emergency repairs" to the Elm Street gates. Current Yale students: between that and Cross Campus being gated off, how do you get anywhere?) There was a sign on the door of the church that said something about The Crucible being performed inside. (There is no venue at Yale that can't be turned into a performance space when the need arises.) So we stood there chatting -- I was pointing out the very spot where I was once felled by a FedEx truck -- when suddenly the big wooden door behind us opened, and a stream of young women in colonial dress rushed past us. They were apparently in a hurry to make their next entrance through Battell's College Street doors, and as they ran past us down Elm Street, hiking up their skirts, a young man in judicial robes came zipping across the lawn behind me and hopped over the railing to enter through the door they'd just come out. "Sorry!" one of the bonnet-wearing maidens shouted as she dashed by. No apologies necessary, kids: that was the only live theatre experience I had all week, and it was exactly the sort of thing I went to Yale for in the first place.

Since then I've been trying to stay indoors and dry as much as possible. This is disgusting, wet, cold, comfort-food weather. The sidewalks are strewn with broken and abandoned umbrellas; every intersection is a river crossing. And you know those plastic covers that fit over strollers, so that the kids inside look like limited-edition collectibles? I want one that fits over my entire body.

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