What a weekend. So there was this street festival in Astoria yesterday. Anyone even remotely acquainted with me knows that Mama is a sucker for a NYC street festival.
I'm drawn like a mosquito to a bug zapper. Simply cannot help myself. There is so much wonderful shit on which to waste my cash, I usually have to replenish funds at an ATM at least once during the 10-block walk through Street Vendor Heaven.
When I'm at one of these time-wasters, I get sorta posessed. My heart pumps, I feel that sting of ammonia thrill in my nostrils, my pupils dilate with excitement. The hippie incense smell, the scores of knockoff handbags, the piles of cheap, hand-woven Guatemalan sweaters, the fried dough, the fresh watermelon souring in the scorching sun...oh, OH...it's almost too much to bear.
Yesterday's Labor Day Street Fair was no disappointment. There were FOUR jumpy castles, all roasting in the relentlessly hot sun, waiting for shoeless children to hop in and get third-degree burns on their feet. Also present were three dusty, tired old ponies, penned into a tiny riding ring on a side street. My friend's dad, a street musician, crooned into a microphone in the middle of 30th Avenue, his guitar case sitting open at his feet in the hopes of making his rent money. It was so cool.
There were even two sleepy-looking, life-sized cartoon characters in cheap, baggy costumes, standing in front of the fish market to shake hands with the little ones. Awwww. Though Spider-man and Winnie the Pooh were of no interest to Lily, who was more interested in scoring cheap plastic bootleg Korean toys and extra ice cream, we did take notice of one family who felt it imperative to force their little boy to stand next to Spidey so his 800 lb mama could snap a precious picture.
This kid, maybe he was five? Was thoroughly freaked out. He clung tightly to his mother as she continually peeled his arms from around her legs and tried to attach them to Spider-man, as if he were one of those hanging monkey toys with the long arms and velcro hands. It was disturbing to watch.
When the little fucker finally relented and sagged back, tear-stained and defeated, into Spidey's waiting arms, his mom got her precious photo, and the family started to move on.
But not before Little Maniac Boy hurled himself into his mother and yelled in her face, "YOU ARE AN ASSHOLE!!!!"
To which, his mother burst out laughing.
I think I need to find a new place to live soon.
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