As indicated in a previous post, I sometimes cycle to school.  As Phil H. knows, I don’t like cycling to school.  Many are the fair mornings when I mentally compose another chapter for my very own latest novel, A Cyclist’s Guide to South Dublin.  (That was a lie.  “Many are the gloomy mornings…” would be more appropriate.)  I won’t be publishing that book for two reasons: my mother told me that I may never do anything in public that would embarrass her, and knowing how many people there are out there that look up to me, I wouldn’t want to lead them astray.  I never want to be the kind of hero that unwittingly inspires some beautiful child to take up cycling.

But this morning’s ride had its perks.  I was stopped at a light when I noticed a, uh, slightly overweight lady with many shopping bags dangling off each arm puff up to the pedestrian crosswalk.  She reached out and jabbed at the light changing button thingie.  The pedestrian crosswalk light didn’t change.  She persisted.  Ah, but I like to see spirit in these worldly-wise individuals, jaded as they may be by the advancing years.  The Shopping Bag lady shifted her load and jabbed again.  And again.  I counted.  The button pinged six times.  That ignorant pedestrian crosswalk light still didn’t change.  I waited until she was comfortably ensconced back in her folds.  “Nah,” I said, “you should probably do it a few more times.”

To be sure, to be sure, she had great presence of mind.  She didn’t jump.  I had a green light, so it was time to go.  The look she gave me, though, buoyed my spirits the entire length of Highfield Road.


Our Pharmacology professor is full of quotables.  For example, once he was talking about the undeniably sad effects of certain bugs on the gastrointestinal tract, and the resulting attempts of the body to rapidly rid itself of that bug.  In the picturesque vernacular, the results are known as “pipestem.”  The professor referred to it as “exquisitely spectacular… reminds you of bad curry.”  While expounding today on some random and quite unimportant point, he noticed that all we robots were writing away furiously… and felt pity for us.  No need to take notes on that point, he said.  “That’s a completely useless bit of information, only good to drop at a Saturday night curry party.”

Apparently he doesn’t like curry.