I am a creature of habit. I'm up every morning at 5:30 and out of the door by 6:30. I drive across town to my favorite diner, Chiggy's Place and walk through the door at 6:45. If I'm late by even five minutes, they all look up from from their morning paper. Gaze at the clock. Look back at me. Like I've broken some unwritten rule and upset the order of things. I love the blue collar population, the conversation that switches back and forth from French Canadian to English, the fact that Alicia brings me coffee without my having to ask. There's a real constancy about our collective morning ritual that I find comforting.
Recently, my table neighbors were joined by an out of state couple. They winter in AZ and summer in NH. Knowing that politics and strangers don't mix but apparently unable to stop myself, I mention Palin. One thing is certain - whether you think she's a fresh breeze or a fricken idiot, most people have an opinion about Sarah Palin.
This handsome, silver haired man with the smooth, tan face man looks right at me and says "Well I don't care what they say about her, I ain't votin' for no coon." My mouth drops open. I stare at him like a cock roach just crawled out of his nose. "Whoooah," his little wifie says, "she didn't like that too much." Didn't like it? I can't believe my ears. "I don't care," he continues, "I hate niggers."
WTF ? Did he just use the N word? What, am I in fricken Mississippi? This may seem naive, especially coming from someone living in NH, the whitest state in the country but who talks like that? I was so stunned that I launched into an immediate hot flash, left my barely touched breakfast and walked out of the diner.
This morning, I broke tradition. Instead of crossing the bridge to the West side, I took a left & parked in front of the Beech Street School. I proudly walked past a gauntlet of sign bearing enthusiasts and into the school cafeteria. I stepped behind the striped curtain and canceled out that dipshit bigot ass hole's vote.