Scratch that. I have not only not owned a decent fall coat in at least two years, but I have also not owned any fall coat. Why? I was too busy using beer to keep myself numb against the cold.
This year, though, I decided that it was high time I buy myself a fall coat. It hit me when I found myself shuffling down the street in one of the Palinode's cast-off numbers whose sleeves trailed past my knuckles and neck sported impressive ring-around-the-collar. Actually, it really only hit me when I was wearing it and a homeless guy lowered his paper cup when I walked by to wait for the next pedestrian to turn on the shine. Still, it did hit me.
I decided to remedy my accidental homeless look and walked into one of those fashion discount stores where I found this really loud, double-breasted, lime-green coat, because Maggie said I needed something that made me laugh when I put it on. This coat did, so I bought it. If you have a problem with it, take your complaints to Maggie Mason.
It was cool this morning, and, for once, I was happy about the fall weather, because it meant that I could wear my new! fall coat!
I set out on my walk to work feeling like a million dollars, baby. When I crossed the street and that lady looked at me while she waited to turn, I knew that she was coveting my new! fall coat! That guy who stared at me on the corner a couple of blocks later? He was thinking that he could totally get with me in my new! fall coat! I was golden in that coat.
And then, the bee came along.
I was waiting for the lights to change so I could cross a major intersection when this huge bee started flying figure-eights around my knees. I hopped sideways and thought the bee had flown on.
"You've still got the bee," the-guy-who-wanted-to-get-with-me said.
I looked down and saw the bee repeatedly pelting my sleeve with its body.
"Thanks!" I yelled as I instinctively hurled my body through the intersection, barely missing a turning car.
"Be careful!" He yelled back.
"I will!" I screeched amidst my own flailing arms.
I paused on the opposing street corner to catch my breath and get my bearings, sure that the bee had lost interest between my near death experience and the running, but there it was, smashing itself again and again into my new! fall coat!
I hurled myself forward again, running as fast as my riding boots and couch potato legs would carry me, but the bee kept catching up to me. It banged into my elbows and my back like it wanted nothing more than to kill my new! fall coat! I felt like I was in one of those dreams where you're trying so hard to run but your legs feel like heavy bags of oatmeal being dragged through soup. (That's a terrible description, but you know what I mean.)
The best part about this incident is that it occurred right in the middle of morning rush hour traffic.
Obviously, bees scare the crap out of me. And I heart public shame.
By the time I got to work, I was sweaty, out of breath, demoralized, suffering from shin splints, and dragging my uncooperative legs behind me like I'd forgotten my walker at home.
My new! fall coat! apparently inspires bee violence. And now I'm kind of scared to wear it during the day. Hooray.
PS. I am still not drinking. I haven't had a drink in 19 days. I hate not drinking, but I hated drinking more. I think that this is one of my favourite things I've ever done for myself.