Blanketing opinions that I'll probably regret soon.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

A wild band of gypsies has set up camp a few doors down from me.

"Would you like a palm reading?", came an unfamiliar voice as I was walking my dogs past the cleaners and Mama Ayesha's, our neighborhood restaurant. Sitting in a white plastic chair across from a red sign decorated with stars, a moon, a palm and a crystal ball, a heavy-set olive-skinned woman looked at me expectantly.

"Uh, no thanks. I don't believe in that stuff", I responded.

This elicited a scowl and a quick scoff from "Mrs. Brothers", and she hasn't looked me in the eye since. I guess I won't be getting a discount on new age psycho-babble any time soon.

This gypsy matriarch appeared out of place amongst my suit-wearing neighbors coming home from their law firms and Hill jobs, but there she was---a slice of eastern Europe---camped out 50 feet from my apartment. And in the past six months, I've come to realize that a 10-person family of gypsies has claimed the top floor of our local cleaners as headquarters.

This location used to be the site of a vintage clothing store, owned by a middle-aged woman with bad sewing skills and worse taste in apparel, but I had no idea it was suitable for human habitation (ie, bathroom, shower, kitchen) because it's a retail space. But according to my friend who lives directly next door, the place is packed with a family of at least 10 bona fide gypsies. He's even seen a load of children up there watching TV when he was parking his car out back one night.

I have no idea how they stay in business and pay the rent. I've only seen one person---some drunk floozy from northern Virginia coming home from the bars one night---ever get a palm reading. But they must make money somehow because there are grubby strollers and pimped-out Nissan Sentras full of kids coming and going all the time.

The main person I see is the gypsy matriarch, sitting in her white plastic chair. She hawks her "services" at very odd times like 3:30 in the morning or 2:00PM on a Tuesday---just hanging out, beckoning to passers-by.

I suppose some people get a burning itch to find out if the random epidermal creases in their hands have some boogada-booga connection to events that will take place in their futures. And you never know when that itch will strike.

To be fair, they're fine enough neighbors, but yuppies are usually a natural repellent against all things gypsy. But that's not reality because at this point Bury Me Standing could be re-written based on my neighborhood alone.
There's a nest!
That's strange - there is a raucous colony of eskimos in my woods.
You'd better watch out that you don't get caught in the middle of a war if the group on 18th next to Toledo Lounge every start going after Mrs. Brothers for invading their turf.

I think if I had my palm read it would tell me exactly what I wanted to hear.
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