samedi 4 avril 2009


The woman on the tram is 40 at first glance, but only 35 on review. There are many women like her on trams in the early morning, always with over-plucked eyebrows and an outfit with undiscernible origins and trend. This woman is sitting across from me and she is wearing too much makeup on her thin tanned face and her head looks a little too small for what I imagine to be a tall lean body when standing. Her eyes are darting intently across the back cover of a free weekly magazine as she rapidly chews on the gum in her mouth. She opens to the middle of the magazine and I see what she had been reading - a catalogue of a closing down sale for one of those dank home-ware shops. At this point I notice that she has headphones in, which would explain the small rhythmic jiggles in her shoulders. It doesn't take her long to flip through the few pages and she returns to studying the back cover. I resume scrutinising the jiggle in her shoulders which are becoming more vigorous. 

Apparently bored, the woman finally puts down the magazine with a sigh. She procures a pair of flashy sunglasses from the small black handbag in her lap, aviators with an ornate floral design along the side, and puts them on roughly. She fidgets with the magazine and begins to roll it up tightly. A new song can be heard playing from her headphones. This one has a strong bass, most likely a 90s dance track, and the woman begins to wiggle her entire body in her seat. I, and the others nearby, are all very aware of this. Completely consumed by the beat of the music and the false sense of privacy which sunglasses can provide, the woman begins to tap her palm with the rolled up magazine in time to the song. The sound of her tapping grows louder as she becomes bolder in her wiggling. I exchange knowing looks of disparagement with the man sitting across the aisle.

 The tram slows down as it pulls to a stop and the woman stands up with a spring in her feet. Her black pants are a little too short for her long legs so she gives them a slight tug which smoothes out a crease. She strides quickly to the door of the tram, and with a cheerful leap exits the stifling carriage, completely oblivious of the sour looks on the faces of the remaining passengers. A few heads turn to watch the woman walk away, but as the tram gains momentum, we each go back to studying our fingernails, reading the paper or looking out the window. There is a lingering silence as we all wait in anticipation for the next person to cause a stir. I give a small cough to break the suspense, but I don't have my sunglasses with me, so I withdraw any intention of being the next act. 

1 commentaire:

Yarshk a dit…

Sounds like a delightful parade of a tram.
Love it. But what would your act be?