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Life Restored   —   The Social Experience

The last month has been a blur of hurried commuting and retail wisdom. Though I wasn't fully seeking out a new job, it seems as though it may have been seeking me, and at just the right time in life. Freshly thirty and discontent with work, I had been desiring something more, a place that had purpose, a place where I was valued and heard. And so the universe dipped its bulging fingers into its earthen pot, stirred things up a bit, and pulled out Swahili to place upon my lap. A retail business with the goal of raising awareness in how we do business with Africa. A member of the Fair Trade Federation, our products are all handmade with sustainable materials, a part of our profits go toward our Partners in African Prosperity programs, and the owner of Swahili actually takes part in the design process, working closely with the artisans in Africa to develop fresh contemporary home decor. So in short, our business takes part in supporting prosperity in multiple countries all over Africa.

And in other news... actually no, there is no other news. I've been living breathing eating work day after day with only time enough in between to drink copious amounts of wine with fun new friends. All in all it's not been too terrible, just unremitting.

Since I work downtown now I've taken to riding the bus to work. The bus that I ride is a seven minute walk from my apartment, back through one of my favorite neighborhoods (my own), and every morning I smell grass and soil and flowers and trees. The sun shines on the sidewalk and as I walk along I step over sunbathing kitties and dodge purposeful bumblebees. The birds sing to me and the neighbors smile and nod hello. It's quite a lovely start to my day and a drastic contrast to the rest of my morning. After I catch the bus we continue West toward downtown. Around 11th street we start picking up the kind of people that would be right at home on the streets of New York. And I mean streets literally. Foul mouthed trashy crazy people whose conversations revolve around who stole what from whom, who got into a fight recently, how long they've been off meth, and so on. After being a little too up close and personal with these individuals in the front of the bus, I started sitting all the way in the back. And come to find out, that's where all the rest of the "normal" people sit. And I use that term loosely, Portlanders don't really fit the conventional idea that the word "normal" invokes. It's amusing to sit back there and watch the people around me watch the people up front and after some kind of attention grabbing event, which so far is practically every morning, we all knowingly glance at each other and snicker, as if to say, Ah the 15, what crazy shit will you deal us next! A little flavor of my weird New York life all the way out to my weird little section of the West.

Posted 6.24.2008 2:32:33 PM

tdc wrote:
I hope they don't blame you for bringing the crazy with you across the country. Glad to hear that things have calmed for you. glad to see your making a difference worldwide. You really do have impact on the planet i thought it was just by sharing your own very special brand of wierdness, seems like you've found a good home for yourself. I hope i can do the same
Posted 6/25/2008 2:57:28 PM
Mr. Space wrote:
I've always said that nothing unites New Yorkers like crazy people. "Hey, look at *that* fucking guy. Glad we're not them."
Posted 6/25/2008 8:54:25 PM - Mr. Space's website
nat wrote:
Yay to copious amounts of wine!!! And, crazy people, for that matter. They unite everyone, not just New Yorkers, and will someday give me work. Until then, don't get beaten on the bus. That's all I heard about when I turn on the news here.
Posted 6/28/2008 4:35:45 PM
Doll wrote:
In New York you perfect the art of not being beaten on the bus, or in the subway, or on the street... it's all about pretending they don't exist and if that doesn't work, act crazier than they are! And of course there's always mace.
Posted 6/28/2008 5:04:58 PM
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