Friday, October 20, 2006

Being a Pedestrian

Isn't that a cool picture? I didn't take it. But I like the fog, and it makes me happy that I get to live downtown. I love downtown. I love walking downtown. It’s amazing the things I take note of as a pedestrian. As a driver, I’m more focused on the road and traffic lights. I’ve learned a lot walking to and from work this past year. I feel very comfortable with my surroundings and more aware of the people, buildings and events downtown. The following is a list of things I've learned walking to work:


The Christmas lights on Temple Square start going up in September.

The "holiday" lights at the Delta Center start going up in October.

Seeing how fast you can run down the steps at the Delta Center is fun.

It takes me exactly 17 seconds to cross a city street.

Judging from the plastic bags they carry their lunch in, all of the Temple Square missionaries do their grocery shopping at Wal-Mart.

If I wear a long, black skirt and walk towardsTemple Square, people mistake me for a missionary and wonder where my companion is.

Hardly anyone uses those orange flags to cross the street. And those who do look really scared.

A huge flock of fat seagulls like to congregate in the parking lot just west of West Temple around 8:50 AM and strategize for the day.

I think the space below the Dakota Lofts is haunted because no one has wanted to lease it for the past two years. The last business there was Ruby Tuesdays and they lasted about two months.

Ever since LDS Business College moved down to the Triad Center, the number of people making their way down North Temple has increased significantly – especially the skateboarders.

One out of five people smile back. And they’re usually convention-goers.

They can tear a building down overnight, but it takes years to grow another one in its place. UNLESS it's that Fidelity building on South Temple across from the Delta Center. They threw that together in a weekend, I swear. I try to step lightly when I pass it.

There are five sculptural reliefs of Olympians carved on a concrete wall along 400 West across from the Gateway. Only one figure has blue lips and I don't know why. I hope she's OK.

The employees at the Ford Building take a smoke break every morning at 8:55 AM.

The Rio Grande Hotel has got to be the trashiest hotel in town, but the proprietor is out there at least three times a day sweeping the walks.

"Papyrus" is the favorite font to use for signs on store windows.

The beggar just outside Temple Square did not need money for her surgery. She needed it to buy supplies for a new poster that reads, "Need money for hungry children. God bless."

It gets real windy along Main Street once you hit 200 South.

If there is a sign on Nordstrom's store window that says "Sale" I will go in.


You know what I’m beginning to accept? My remarkable attention to detail. I decided this on Wednesday when an email from Tickle encouraged me to take the “How your brain works and learns” test. I took their IQ Test several weeks ago and learned that I am a “visionary philosopher”. The fact that I can see the future is a power I was somewhat mindful of, but I have committed myself to take on this responsibility to further the advancement of mankind and not abuse it for personal gain.

Anyway, the test results explained my in-depth linear and analytical brain ability. I am undeniably left-brained, which is a little disappointing because I always considered myself a creative person, and creative people are right-brained. Oh well. I probably developed more left brained skills as an art history student. Left-brained people see tiny details within a large picture and see how they work together to form the larger picture. And that’s exactly what art history students are trained to do. We're trained to notice colors, texture, expressions on people's faces, reactions to their expressions, their stance, their gestures, how they relate to their surroundings and what that means in a larger context. I wonder if I would make a good spy. Probably not. The last time someone made me hold a gun I was so devastated I wanted to cry. I’ll stick to analyzing paintings.

3 comments:

joN. said...

you should totally write a book about the life and philosophies of being a pedestrian. the only problem would be if the literary critics didn't like it, they'd have a heyday using the word 'pedestrian.' you also need to explain in detail the situation where you held a gun. i think you'd make an awesome spy. not only are you mysteriously provocative, but you're short enough to go around unnoticed. did i take that same tickle test you're talking about? what am i? i can't remember.

laura said...

You did take that same tickle test, but I don't know what you are. Kaila is a Word Warrior and Maria is an Insightful Linguist.

I think the last time I held a gun was up at Marni's cabin in Flaming Gorge where some guys there were trying to shoot rabbits and they thought it was funny that I thought they were cruel.

Dre said...

I love your new super powers! I also enjoy noticing small detail, though I will not claim to be good at it as you are, if so I would need a blog to prove it.

Lets say I took the tickle test, I believe I am the Great Forgetter! I take in everything but will somehow never remember it.

In closing Guns are cool!