They grouped in the road at the top of the rise and looked back. The storm front towered above them and the wind was cool on their sweating faces. They slumped bleary-eyed in their saddles and looked at one another. Shrouded in the black thunderheads the distant lightning glowed mutely like welding seen through foundry smoke. As if repairs were under way at some flawed place in the iron dark of the world.
– Cormac McCarthy, All the Pretty Horses
Happy birthday, Mr. McCarthy, sir.
My own day was largely uneventful, at least until my evening commute when the train car I was in flooded. I didn’t notice it for the longest time — long enough that my bag, which I make a habit of placing under my seat, got wet, and then so did my pants leg when I lifted the bag off the floor. I hoped at first that somebody had just spilled a large drink, but when I stood up before my station I saw that it was down the entire length of the car, a long puddle of water. At a guess, the toilet in the bathroom (which, as it happens, was in that car) overflowed.
There’s nothing quite like overflow from a communal toilet underfoot to liven up your evening commute.
Have I mentioned lately how much I don’t like the LIRR?
Beyond that, it was just a typical day, although I did manage to get a fair amount of work done, which was nice. And I finished reading John le Carré’s Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy. I decided to read it after seeing the trailer for the upcoming new movie version. (It was already made into a miniseries starring the late Alec Guinness.) I liked it a lot…but also didn’t. It can be kind of boring and obtuse at times, although I think somewhat deliberately, since it suggests that’s an awful lot of what spycraft is, sifting through old files, making connections, ferreting out the truth. There’s a lot to really like about the novel, which is full of inventive jargon, often suspensful, and often quite dryly funny. But my opinion’s split.
I do think I’ll watch the miniseries and movie, though.
And that was Wednesday: mass transit toilet water and Cold War espionage.