Preparing to cross at the Hoover Street and Jefferson Boulevard intersection is like preparing for battle.
It would never do to simply wait for the white man to appear and jaunt casually to your destination.
It is a journey. You strategize on the best crossing method: straight across, or diagonal? An arced trajectory in between?
Are you biking? If so, is there a LAPD officer nearby who will give you a ticket if you don’t get off your bike?
And who is across the road, coming in your direction? Is the guy on the long board with the iPod a potential threat? What about the girl biking and talking on her cell phone?
So as you get ready to cross, you do not idle. You brace yourself. Perhaps you say a prayer, and hope that you don’t end up at the bottom of a three-student pile-up 15 feet away from Denny’s.
One good distraction from the anxiety of taking your life into your hands is on the nearby advertising kiosks. For example, if you make it to campus with all your internal organs and you are a tall, athletic blonde with a GPA of 3.5 or higher, you can donate your eggs for $20,000.
Or if you are in search of a new apartment, you could rent a studio apartment for $1,500 a month on First and Western avenues, just seconds away from campus (by hovercraft).
If you sold your eggs, you could live there for a year! Assuming you already own a hovercraft.
Or maybe you don’t want to go to class at all. You could contact Alibis & Paybacks!
Alibis & Paybacks is the latest start-up advertised on the coveted Jefferson and Hoover traffic light posts.
The simple concept of A&P is outlined in questionable grammar on both fliers and its website (alibisnpaybacks.com).
Customers may pay the company to a) corroborate or invent an alibi, b) make an anonymous phone call to someone they don’t like and yell at that person or c) publicly humiliate an ex by posting fliers.
If this concept doesn’t sound like the 1998 Norm MacDonald classic Dirty Work to you, then you haven’t spent enough time watching movies at 2 a.m. on Comedy Central.
A&P is offering what every college student needs — a mature way to deal with unpleasant situations. No longer must we resort to text messaging or angry Facebook hacking to exact our revenge.
No, now we can pay someone a cavalier disregard for capitalization to originate an alibi — the dog ate your assignment! — or pretend to be that dog on the phone.
There are more ambiguous features. On the website, which is decorated with a picture of surprisingly and incongruously benign row boats, the company offers to “provide or even post revenge flyers.”
One can only assume these would be posted right next to fliers for A&P.
The strangest and most alarming offer is the “Cuss Out Line.” You provide them with a phone number, tell them what your problem with the person on the other end of the line is and they yell at this person. Anonymously.
Because your ex-boyfriend will never, ever guess who was responsible for the random call that harassed him about his Curious George underwear.
A&P might have more luck than the sperm and egg donation business. And, at least they take our minds off the impending doom of the intersection.
Laura Reeve is senior majoring in public relations. Her column, “Folk Laur,” ran every other Wednesday.