The other day when I was marvelling over the wonder of the cement truck, several concrete thoughts tumbled about in my head:

  1. My rock tumbler. I had one of these things about 30 years ago (back when I was negative nine years old!) but do not remember if I ever actually used it to completion. I do know, however, that there are still rocks inside the sealed tumbler container, because the last (which could have been the first) time I used it, I did not remove the contents. So even if there were rocks in there in 1974 or thereabouts, somewhere along that rocky road they must have done whatever rocks do when left to their own devices, i.e. turned into candy.
  2. Fresh cement. I have never marred a freshly poured cement surface with a footprint, handprint, or any other kind of print (ass, nose, pancreas). I have never ruined that gloriously smooth surface with a pointy stick, either to permanently proclaim my love for someone (JODI + LITTLE TOMMY TINSDALE 4EVER!) or to show the world I know how to spell FUCK. However, I have been celebrated on a Philadelphia sidewalk by an anonymous admirer.
  3. Death (Murder?). This is something I can and do freely think about without the prompting of a cement truck. However, the cement truck’s appearance did force (yes, force!) me to wonder how quickly a person would die if someone poured dry cement down his throat. And how a subsequent autopsy would probably reveal a perfectly formed cement replica of the inside of the deceased’s esophagus, which could then be displayed either on a somber wooden stand as a memorial (traditional, conservative option) or on an ornate gilded pedestal as a sculpture (nouveau, avant garde option).

Oh, and by the way, the cement truck operator did think I was adorable when I scampered atop the mixer and yelled “Right foot red!” In fact, he offered to make me a pair of nice boots from the cement and take me swimming in the East River!