Traveling Incognito

Lining in front of me this morning at the subway ticket counter: a vastly overweight woman wearing offendingly stretchy pseudo-designer clothes and tacky sunglasses, extra large Starbucks latte in one hand, giant glazed donut of same, in the other, busy yapping with another equally attired woman in the loudest yankee accent this side of Jersey…

Just when I’m about to turn the volume up on my headphones, I get a glance at the tiny flag proudly pinned to her backpack and nearly fall over laughing.

Oh yea. She looked Canadian alright. Nearly had me fooled too.


  1. Starbucks?!? Did she have to go to La Defense for that? Or have they actually opened more branches all over now?

    During our travels, Jasmine and I were asked repeatedly where we were from. We alternated among “San Francisco,” “New York,” and “Costa Rica.” When we wanted to be left alone, or asked as a prelude to a politically-charged question, we just said, “Hong Kong.”

  2. Well, I’m lucky enough to live by one of the only [other?] Starbucks in the city (didn’t even know they had one at La Defense, but that wouldn’t be so surprising). Anyway, they managed an implantation near Odeon, where the proximity of a few thousands other real coffee places just makes it all the more ridiculous when a handful American tourists and trendy French soccer moms craving for their dose of Urban Exotism go grab their cup of overpriced coffee ersatz there. But actually, Homo Touristus is quite possibly the last species I would hang any hope on, I have long learned to tune out their stupid traveling habits. Not a US exclusivity either (though they may form the bulk of what you see around here): French families strolling through the touristy abomination that is Fisherman’s Wharf are only marginally less ridiculous…

    But seriously, that Canadian flag pin… that was just incredibly funny… and a huge leap of faith.

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