well done to the P plater in the red commodore at the intersection of grange and north roads at 5.55pm.
there was a person in a wheelchair that was operated by a probe on his head. he was struggling to complete his way across the pedestrian crossing. you were patient and waited, even though the light was green for you, without tooting, until he managed to tortuously and ever so slowly get that fucking probe into the little doo-dah to make his machine proceed.
it was awful to watch. i was in a right-hand lane waiting for a green arrow. i was about to jump out to see if he needed any help. i was frozen. watching, agonising over whether he would get that shaking probe, extending out from his metal head band into the socket.
and well done too, to the young and intimidating looking maybe-a-gang-member man, in baseball cap and other sundry cool-guy items of apparel who dropped his bmx-style bike near the intersection, just outside kfc, and ventured half-way across to help the wheelchair guy.
these two acts of kindness, which did not take much but were a beautiful thing to see, brought my just-below-the-surface tears to the, um, surface. they were ready to brim because this afternoon my mother and i took princess to see polanski's oliver twist.
it was pretty dark, and oh so sad. princess was goraning and twisting in her seat, clasping my arm, crying and sniffing for a lot of it. i was thinking "fuck, this was a mistake", my mother was repeatedly sniffing into a tissue. princess was asking me whether anyone in the movie was going to be kind to oliver. she whispered really loudly, "i just want him to be happy."
of course, oliver was subjected to abuse after abuse, and then when there seemed to be hope, it was taken away from him. at one stage, princess said "i don't like this story" and i was thinking, oh shit. am i creating for her a traumatic memory, much like my own ones from when i was little?*
but there was a happy ending, and princess told me about two hours later, after we had a little distance from the emotion, that she'd enjoyed it, she liked it, and would like to read charles dickens "when i'm older."
* tommy and sybil.