On Saturday I shouldered my way down Columbus Avenue through a red tide of Santas and Santa’s concubines to the cafe where we meet before swim class. The cafe was closed. A woman passing by told me that several cafes down the street were also closed to keep out the Santas.
“What’s going on?” I asked.
“Santa Con,” she said. “Another excuse to dress up silly-cute. You buy a bracelet that gets you into bar where you get to hang out with other drunk Santas. It’s San Francisco.”
Really? It’s not silly— I value silliness (witness my previous Angela post)—it’s stupid.
Sunday the cafe was open again, the Santas having stumbled back to Hyper-borea. Joyce, one of my students, was early. Soon we were laughing about how we’ve turned into exactly the kind of cranks complaining about the gone-to-hell-ness of youth that we swore we wouldn’t.
“But the difference is, we’re right,” I said.
Joyce said, “They clustered and blocked the sidewalk as if nobody else existed.”
Eileen, another student, arrived and joined in. “I wish we could get this kind of turnout for something meaningful. It was four o’oclock and they were falling down drunk in the street. People, I wanted to shout, ‘It’s four o’clock in the afternoon’.”