So, when I bike to work in the mornings there are a few little “temporal milestones” that I try to hit. Events that happen at specific times, and at specific places, along my bike route.
- First up, we have the commuter rail, picking up all the little high school students from Belmont center. This is the earliest one, and if I hit this (or see the kids still waiting for the train) then I know that I’m running early / on time. I almost never see this one.
- Last on the route are the two middle / grade / preschool bus stops; the bus follows my route along a parallel path, and so far I’ve only missed the second stop one or two times. If I’m running early, then I sometimes get in before the kids even start waiting for the bus… but usually I see them with their parents hanging out at the end of the street.
- And the middle event, the one this whole post is about, is when I see Ramona Flowers waiting outside the bank.
Seriously, look up a picture of this character from the Scott Pilgrim movie. Offhand I don’t know what actress plays her, but this girl is a dead ringer. Green hair, cut in the same style. Jacket, backpack, and bracelets. I am 100% certain that she dresses up like this on purpose.
Mary Elizabeth Winstead as Ramona Flowers, from IMDB
But aside from that, I know nothing about this person; why she sits on the front stoop of the bank, why she’s always writing in a notebook, or why she looks to be high school aged… yet doesn’t take the commuter rail that everyone else takes. In fact, she’s usually at the bank after the train leaves…
So, when I drive into work, I generally don’t see Ramona. Except for one time, when she tried to drag-race me down Waltham street.
Ok, so it wasn’t her who was drag-racing me. But close… I was sitting at a red light, and when it turned green I took off. I love my Mustang, and so I generally accelerate a bit faster than is absolutely necessary – it’s fun to feel the power that the engine can put out, and it makes my commute a bit more bearable. And not many cars can (or try to) keep up when I leave a stop line.
So this one morning, when I saw a Rav4-style car holding pace next to me… well, that’s a challenge. And we did have an open road in front of us… so I opened up the throttle a bit wider, and left the little Rav behind me. I kept following my usual route, and soon enough was ahead of the Rav, pulling up to yet another red light with them pulling in behind me.
Only when I looked in the rear-view mirror did I see Ramona, sitting in the passenger seat, staring straight into my mirror.
Unfortunately we never ended up next to each other again, but I can’t help but wonder if she recognized me… if, for some reason, she was the reason that a Rav4 was racing a Mustang down a street in Lexington. I can’t help but wonder…
Why am I being chased by Ramona Flowers?