Sunday, December 22, 2013

Noise, Oranges

Driving through the International District today was surprisingly easy, despite the mobs of people packed into Century Link Field for the Seahawks game. My timing was mid-game, so the streets were easily negotiable, even on this Sunday before Christmas.

I've been inside the stadium for football games, and the noise is tremendous, numbing, deafening. Today I stood in the parking lot at Uwajimaya (an Asian market), practically a stone's throw from the game, and the sound of 67,000 fans cheering was spooky, ghostly, traveling in waves that rose in tone and intensity then just as quickly died down.

A foggy mist sat heavy on the city, and everything dripped. A vendor sold hot chestnuts from a cheery red umbrella'd cart by the store entrance. In my bag were a few Japanese mandarin oranges, the kind with the green stems and leaves still attached, and a few blood oranges — seasonal splurges. The price of food is high these days.

I looked up the price of tickets available for the next Sunday's Seahawks game: starting at $170, for a single ticket. The maximum monthly alottment for a person receiving food stamps in this city is $189 a month.

I don't think I can say anything more.