One of the things that I've realized lately is that when I have a vocal cord movement episode or asthma, or both at the same time from chemicals or smoke contamination in others is that it seems to happen mostly when surrounded by the economically disadvantage. I was teasing Jim the other night and said I am now officially allergic to poor people.
I know, I know, that sounds snotty and elitist, but genuinely it is not. Think it through. Who uses cheaper colognes, body hygiene products and cleaning supplies? The poor. When the rate of smokers is declining in the US who still has very high rates of people who still smoke? The poor.
When I'm doing something in a crowd such as going to the opera or my recent visit to hear chamber music or to museums, gallery openings, conferences or other events and places where the clientele is not slandered in heavy chemical scents I never react. But.. put me in a Wal Mart on any day surrounded by Wal Mart's typical demographic or the post office on food stamp and welfare check delivery day and it's a sure bet I'm going to have an episode and end the day taking my meds and laying down.
Knowing that it was with great trepidation that I took my car to get worked on this afternoon.
Jim told me just before lunch time that his car is acting up and we'd likely have to take my car to our vacation to Michigan this coming week. The air conditioning in my car has conked out so I had to get it worked on and will be detailing it tomorrow. There is no way I'm going to be in air pollution central southern Indiana and then drive up to the Detroit area with no air conditioning in mid summer. Here, I can run my errands in the morning when there is zero heat and no absolute need of a/c.
The problem with having to drop off the car suddenly to get the ac recharged becomes one of how to get home again since they weren't promising to be done with my car till tomorrow noon. So I did the only thing I could do short of spring for a taxi, something in short supply in my tiny town, I took the town trolley from across the street from the shop to within 5 blocks of the house. The last time I rode the trolley home from the auto shop I had a pretty severe asthma attack from being in that trolley with scads of folks wearing only God knows what.
This time it wasn't bad. The only thing is what was a ten minute ride from my house to the shop turned into a ninety minute trolley ride across my teeny town. I think I probably could have walked and gotten home faster. A lot of that time was actually waiting at the trolley stop because the posted sign times at the trolley stop were either very outdated or the driver was super late.
Which is another way that the poor get hosed by society besides only having enough money to buy products made out of hazardous chemicals. They end up having to waste lots of time doing things like riding public transit. Most of the people riding are what I would call the working poor, wearing uniforms for various retail shops or fast food.
During the years we lived in Germany I used to take the bus frequently and it was on time and convenient. Here it's the opposite.