Ice cold

I try not to let people sell me things

I bought a new car recently, and when I first arrived at the dealership the associate told me that the model I was looking to test drive was “a great car — it’s our luxury package.” I quickly understood that I was about to experience a car with a sunroof and nice speakers. Another time, someone tried to sell me a less than magnificent set of knives by asserting that they could cut pennies in half.

And yet I’m human, and there’s one phrase that I fall for every time: ice cold.

A few years ago I bought a grilled sandwich for lunch at my favorite Colorado bakery. It was pretty hot outside — mid 90s, I’m sure. The owner asked me if I wanted a cream soda to go with my sandwich. I hesitated and he pounced. “Ice cold,” he said soothingly as I looked out the window and then back at the display of sodas arranged tastefully in a glass front refrigerator. I gave him two more dollars.

More recently I was reading an article in Rolling Stone about one of my favorite singers. He was sitting on the porch of his ranch in Montana “sipping an ice cold IPA.” I immediately thought, “God, I have to one.”

The thing is that nothing is ice cold for very long. The very act of drinking helps make the act of drinking less pleasant because my fingers on the glass, the air in the room — they are all heated. And still I yearn for that moment where expectation meets reality.

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If you live in a city (or really anywhere) you’ll sometimes see transients who talk to themselves. Sometimes they just mumble, but sometimes they can be a little more aggressively conversational. I always wonder how aware they are; maybe by making sounds they’re asserting their own existence when most people tend to ignore them.

I sometimes do the same thing. I like to sing to myself right when a Metro is slowing down beside me because I can be pretty loud without actually being heard. For like 10 seconds I’m just a tiny, somewhat harmonious part of the noisy machinery of the world. And only I will ever know.

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