Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Gassius Clay

Going up the elevator in the Fairmont hotel. I had parked my car down the street (waaaaay down the street, as it turns out, as I mistook the Hotel where the meeting was supposed to be and parked a few blocks away), so I rode the elevator from the ground floor. Six or seven Silicon Valley tech types board. They all have khakis on, a cellphone clipped to their belts; a few have bluetooth earpieces on with those blinky blue LEDs. Like a flight of lemmings, we all instinctively face the same direction, and stare silently at the Floor Display number. And then it happens. Barely noticeable at first, but then, like bad cologne, the odor wafts throughout the cramped quarters of the cabin. For the record, it wasn't me. We all notice, but we all maintain a poker face and continue our vigil of the display. Some squint slightly as a sign of discomfort.

After an interminable amount of time, the car arrives at the Lobby floor. All but I pour out into the fresh air. The look of relief on their faces are unmistakable. I need to get to the 1st floor, so I stay on. But right as the door is about to slide shut, a woman squeezes in. She too catches a wiff of the lingering odour. I see her flash a look of disgust at me. I want to shout, Hey Lady it Ain't Me! There were six other guys in here! It's one of them!! But that would only make me look more guilty of the crime. I am framed. I am mortified. The elevator arrives on the 1st floor and I scurry out, head hung in shame.

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