Suddenly I'm remembering tripping over a hunk of broken concrete curbing, as a kid--I remember where I was, even, the parking lot of a bank on 45th Street in Wallingford, with my mom; it was night, and dark, must've been this time of year--anyway, I tripped and did a complete and genuine faceplant on the ground and ended up with a mouthful of greasy parking lot mud. Oh, it was so wrong, the taste of it--organic and minerally, sort of, but with an odd mechanical jolt, and some current of leaf mold, diffuse rot. Grit and funk, between my teeth. I wasn't really hurt, I don't think, but the freaky awfulness of dirt on my tongue induced some alarmed and mortified bawling, there out back of the First Interstate Bank. (Or whatever it was then. It's a Wells Fargo now, and I still go there, park in that lot myself and, for what it's worth, watch my step.)
And now an ancient, hackneyed joke from my late grandpa: did you know that you eat over a ton of dirt, every day? That would be The Earth. Haha! Grandpa had three jokes that he kept in a steady rotation; here are the other two:
- Pete and Repeat were walking down the street. Repeat fell in a hole. Who fell in a hole? (A word to the wise, from my second-grade self: do not answer this, you will only plummet into a ceaseless vortex of utter frustration.)
- Q. How far can a bear (occasionally a pig, or a dog) run into the woods? A. Halfway; then he's running out.