Monday, July 31, 2006

The Strike, an Addendum

In Philadelphia, when we finally arrived, there was an exorbitantly long wait for our bags to come through into baggage claim. Everyone was already travel-weary, and everyone had tight connections to make; yet there we were, waiting together as a group once again, all of us looking like zombies. Andrew and I stood by a cart trolley, one of those where you pay a few dollars in order to get a metal cart to pile your luggage on. The trolley had long since been empty of carts, and Andrew and I and many others idled near the empty rails.

Nonetheless, an exhausted man walked wearily up to the trolley and inserted three dollar bills into the slots, just as the instructions stated: “1. Insert money.” When he moved on to the next instruction, however—“2. Remove cart”—he waited, puzzled, seemingly confused at why no cart had appeared. Andrew and I watched him curiously. Did he think a small inflatable cart would pop out from the change slot? The man eventually realized his mistake, and, disgusted, walked away.

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