Saturday, July 4, 2009

III. Altostratus

I BELIEVE MY FAVORITE SIGHTS are those which take place around The Tree of Life store- "gifts for those who are about something." It pulls on the women here. In groups they each tug on the arms of their friends to go in, explore, care about something. The look on their faces are a mix of excitement -- there is scarce else to do in this town they haven't done a thousand times here or in their own private Hudson's -- and self-righteous action right with the Lord. And in the most enjoyable way. A small breeze stops and a group bursts forth from the Tree with bags and trinkets and proof they have parted with their copper for a bit of fashionable social responsibility. Off to drinks to celebrate their proven piety their husbands allow out of good judgement. Should their husbands have the great fortune to be in tow, the advantage is often theirs. An eye roll and a tog of the arm, at once, acknowledges the wife's desire to save the planet and enforces their position of perceived power in the relationship. Unless they have apologies to make, submitting time and patience here is not likely. The wife, in response, is disappointed but comforted too, down deep, at the simple hierarchy a forceful husband provides with a selfishness she understands. It is a curious dynamic, with more layers than I mention here, and one better left to sociologists with better funding than mine.

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