The city has been doing construction on our street for about five months. We’ve spent all of quarantine trapped at home with nonstop drilling, digging, banging, and screaming. It’s been a dream. And folks, I’m about to lose my mind.
So far there have been three different crews: The Nice Guys, a diverse group of life-timers, young and old, black, white, and brown, who love their job and being outside getting their hands dirty. They’re nice to all of the neighbors, wave, say hello, and will honk the diesel truck horns for the kids. They’re a joy. The Prison Was So Good I Wanna Go Backs, a group of very angry/rapey white dudes with “I killed someone” tattoos and permanent scowls who wave to nobody at all but stare at you like you’re a steak during a famine while you walk your dog, and the Hipster Hot Crew, a group of mostly college students who just need money for school, do manual labor like it’s “fun” because they’re dabbling in it and also wear skinny jeans and tight t-shirts to show off their glistening muscles that they no doubt got from the free student gym at the local university.
We all loved The Nice Guys. We all hated The Prison Was So Goods. And we all drooled a little at the Hipsters.
But the best part of the Hipsters is not the muscles and the in-tact hope that accompanies youth. No, the best part of the Hipsters is the ‘Merica duo that doesn’t seem to fit in with the rest of the bunch and are a little insecure and threatened and fighting back against the Great Tight Pants Takeover of 2020 with billowing mullets atop a giant roller pin machine fit with a stadium-size American flag waving in the wind.
You guys know about the street that I live on because I’ve written about it here a few times. It’s weird. It’s weird because it’s such a tight community where everyone knows each other, the kids have grown up together, we have themed cocktail parties and lawn movie nights and we send texts like, “DOES ANYONE HAVE MINT?” “YES GO IN MY BACKYARD AND GET IT, BITCH.” The women of My Street have a group text and here is the conversation from the Hipster/Merica Duo Day:
Me: I love the two guys who think they’re in a Fourth of July parade with their giant ass flag waving in the wind.
Neighbor: You’re clearly watching them closer than me.
Me: Girl that is a BIG ASS FLAG JUST A WAVING in the wind. And then you have the men in skinny jeans who are clearly college students.
Neighbor: Oh! I see it!
Me: They’re like, in case anyone forgot, YOU LIVE IN MEEEEERRRRIIICCAAAA.*
Neighbor: OMG lol
Neighbor 2: “America Fuck Yeah” –Team America
Me: The vibrations from the truck just knocked all of my dishes off of the counter. Glass everywhere.
Neighbor: Holy shit. My house is shaking too. Need any help?
Me: You’re sweet. I got it tho.
Neighbor 3: I feel like I’m not on the same street. I haven’t seen any of those dudes!
Me: They’re coming.
Neighbor: They’re coming.
Me: [FREEDOM INTENSIFIES MEME] You’ll know they’re near when you can feel the Star-Spangled Banner. It feels like vibrations. But not the “alone time” ones.
Neighbor 3: So you’re saying this is a bad time to do some yoga?
Me: I’m saying it’s the best time.
Neighbor: I can’t. lmao
This is why you should all be happy you aren’t in a group text with me. Happy Monday yall!
*There is nothing wrong with being proud of where you come from. But I do think that nationalism and pride are different and we’ve never globally seen nationalism do much good for anyone. My family is very proud to be from Italy, Iran, Wales, and the US of A. But I do not believe that any of these countries are “the best.” All countries have problems, can do better, and have much to learn about showing up for their citizens.