That harlot Sandy banged us hard last Sunday. Now, over a week later, many of us still find ourselves impotent, powerless. No TV, no Internet, no phone, no microwaved Hot Pocket®. For some, these losses transform trivial issues–like buying a loaf of bread–into potentially life-threatening events. Lots of people have gone batty.
Perhaps worst, in a sea of bad behavior, was my inane argument about license plates and gas rationing. Fueled (pun intended) by most NJ news sources, I learned that vehicles with license plates ending in even numbers can fuel up on even-number days, odd-number plates on odd-number days.
Ok, we’ve got some order in this chaos. I check my license plate: odd. Now, my wife’s plate immediately confuses the sh*t out of me. It seems to float away from the bumper, now a hovering Mayan hieroglyph, an impenetrable gaggle of symbols. My mind is weak from stress. I get pissed.
Red-faced and furious, “Tell me–is that the letter O or a zero?!” I’m so obsessed I’m panting.
Completely disregarding the question, my wife exclaims, “Zero is an even number!”
“No it’s not! I don’t even think it’s an integer!” I’m a mathematical fool.
Hands in the air, eyes orbiting her skull like distant white planets, exasperated, “Yes it is!”
Defeat washes over me, until, “Ok, your license plate has a “1” preceding this… whatever it is… this letter Z / number O situation. If NJ considers this the letter O, then your license plate ends with a “1” and you-go-on-odd-days!“
She’s fed up and basically says she’ll take her chances.
I drag out my response with unmistakable pomposity, “This changes e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g.”
Nothing is settled, and I still have many concerns, chief of which is my inability to make sense, whatsoever. I did learn a big lesson, though–humans are always one power outage away from broiling lunacy.