As I mentioned in my previous post, I spent yesterday in the information booth for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources at the State Fair. Although we were nowhere near the midway (Thank God, I even walked an extra block to avoid even a glimpse of the entrance with all its contorted Gypsy baroque figures that somehow creep me out!) I still managed to experience an entertaining view into what our society is made of. And that creeps me out more than the Midway statues.
I saw numerous people seemingly going nowhere while talking on cell phones. What's up with that? When I was growing up it was, "Meet me by the giant slide at 2:00". Not "I'm just past the horse barns now, on my way to see that fabulously cool babe at the DNR booth ;), and by the way did you know such and such and yada yada babble ad infinitum." I think some spend way too much time keeping in touch about what they are doing and not enough time doing it.
I saw one of my coworkers using a dipnet to fish a cell phone out from the ever-popular fish pond (Which, by the way, I helped capture a few fish for the effort). I was going to check it out myself after my work shift, but there were people lined up 3 or 4 deep. To watch fish swimming around. People really need to go out and connect with nature more.
I saw maybe a thousand different T-shirt slogans. My favorite was "Old people RULE!"
I saw people who seemingly just lived to collect brochures and free stuff. Even our honorable Governor Tim Pawlenty's face on a fan. When I was little it was the WCCO (TV and radio) shopping bag. Some things never change, thank God.
I saw a bunch of 14-15 year old boys riding around in circles on these little bicycle-scooter hybrids with about six inch bike wheels. They looked like they were very inefficient and pointless to ride, and their riders with their baggy pants looked pretty ridiculous. I think they thought they were cool.
And, I saw thousands of teenagers trying to look cool. Dagnabit, I was once one of them, and I don't know and don't care now if I ever succeeded in looking cool to anyone. The 4-H button I had to wear when I was staying at the 4-H building probably erased all doubts. Especially since I was exhibiting a rock collection.
I saw pieces of metal that don't belong piercing eyebrows, lower lips, tongues, and God knows what else. I have pierced ears, in fact three holes in one, one in the other, but earlobes were just meant to be pierced. Facial parts were not.
I saw people who apparently thought any-kind-of-deep-fried-food-on-a-stick was a sacrament. I even heard rumors of "hot dish on a stick", but did not wish to investigate.
I talked with a few people, many of which I could tell knew nothing about "natural resources" except from what they had seen in the last ten minutes in the DNR building. People asked questions about things that, given the chance, I would seek to find the answer myself instead of going to the fair to ask some uniformed professional.
And I saw crowds. Did I mention I hate crowds, hate the way I have to walk in an erratic, zigzag pattern to get from here to there because all the zombies stand around in clusters and walk with no regard for anyone but themselves. As a matter of fact, it's not the crowds, but the self-absorbedness of the individuals within the crowds that disturbs me to no end. It's all about me, I guess, me and my attitude. My outer presentation matters more than what's inside.
Oh well. I like my little piece of heaven here in the country, with towering white pines and howling coyotes. I'll stay in my little world as much as I can.