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incident Options
justina bandol
Posted: Saturday, December 8, 2018 2:24:19 PM
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Joined: 12/29/2013
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Location: Bucharest, Bucuresti, Romania
We are in a taxi dance hall.

The men who do not dance sit along one wall, in a line of red seats that have been retrieved from the rubble of a demolished theater. In opera seats, one seat or two or three between them, they watch the dance floor, regretting incidents. The women here have been instructed against aggression, the hard sell. There is no need-these men, in their threadbare suits, choking on fat neckties, with their broken postures, are easy sells. The management knows that they scurry here out of the rain with ideas and will approach, in due time, the women when their moldy ideations have settled on a suitable vessel. The women have sifted through bargain racks in bargain districts, chosen polka-dot prints and obscure flower patterns. Fat arms and thin arms, swollen thighs and emaciated necks. The men choose from the bargain racks. The music urges and a man chooses a woman and they dance for a dime.

What could the „incidents” be?
RuthP
Posted: Saturday, December 8, 2018 3:06:57 PM

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justina bandol wrote:
We are in a taxi dance hall.

The men who do not dance sit along one wall, in a line of red seats that have been retrieved from the rubble of a demolished theater. In opera seats, one seat or two or three between them, they watch the dance floor, regretting incidents. The women here have been instructed against aggression, the hard sell. There is no need-these men, in their threadbare suits, choking on fat neckties, with their broken postures, are easy sells. The management knows that they scurry here out of the rain with ideas and will approach, in due time, the women when their moldy ideations have settled on a suitable vessel. The women have sifted through bargain racks in bargain districts, chosen polka-dot prints and obscure flower patterns. Fat arms and thin arms, swollen thighs and emaciated necks. The men choose from the bargain racks. The music urges and a man chooses a woman and they dance for a dime.

What could the „incidents” be?

Most likely an episode of inappropriate behavior on the part of a man with one of the taxi hall women or possibly with someone at the door, controlling entry to the taxi hall. Knowledge of the incident is likely a part of why he is sitting on the side. This seems a poor fit with the entire quote, but it is the only interpretation that occurs to me in the general setting.
justina bandol
Posted: Saturday, December 8, 2018 5:07:18 PM
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Joined: 12/29/2013
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Location: Bucharest, Bucuresti, Romania
Thank you, RuthP. I suspected the same, but needed a native speaker's assurance. I find the formulation too allusive, bordering on obscure, but this is probably the intended meaning.
justina bandol
Posted: Saturday, December 8, 2018 5:34:27 PM
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Joined: 12/29/2013
Posts: 760
Neurons: 65,759
Location: Bucharest, Bucuresti, Romania
Just to keep the context, I would like to ask one more question here. The setting is the same.

The women are pros, the men driven. The men think, this is the last night on earth and I am spending it in the arms of a beautiful woman. The women are not necessarily beautiful, but anything is possible. The women count dimes, ponder the bills waiting on top of the icebox. The bills are gratified a dime at a time, steadily.

What kind of bills are these? And why on top of the icebox?
Romany
Posted: Sunday, December 9, 2018 6:29:36 AM
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Joined: 6/14/2009
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Location: Brighton, England, United Kingdom
The writer is trying to humanise the working girls which, at the same time, points to the difference between the two parties engaged in a pay-for-sex relationship.

The men here are looking at the experience from a romantic, idealistic viewpoint.A sort of "We who are about to die salute you." thing.

Whereas to the women there's nothing special about it, it's just a way to pay the bills: rent, electricity, power, food, education for their children etc.

"On top of the ice-box" is a phrase which uses a specific to express something general. Everyone has a place where they keep their current bills. It may be we stuff them into a kitchen drawer, or shove them in a box... or on top of the fridge/ice-box.The resting-place always looms large in our minds when we owe money.
thar
Posted: Sunday, December 9, 2018 6:46:03 AM

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Yes, just to be clear, this is not a box for holding ice. It is the freezer compartment for food storage. It is just a free high surface in the kitchen where you might put stuff. It is painting a picture rather than recounting any particular trend.
FounDit
Posted: Sunday, December 9, 2018 10:14:12 AM

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Joined: 9/19/2011
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From a male perspective, I can see two things that might fit 'regretting incidents'.

The first would be what RuthP said. Seeing some man behaving badly on the dance floor might make a woman I want to dance with wary and cautious, thus spoiling what could be a (possibly) pleasant experience.

The second might be seeing a woman I might want to approach leaving with someone else because I hesitated to act when I could have.

Both of these would be cause for regret in that situation.


We should look to the past to learn from it, not destroy our future because of it — FounDit
justina bandol
Posted: Sunday, December 9, 2018 12:34:13 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 12/29/2013
Posts: 760
Neurons: 65,759
Location: Bucharest, Bucuresti, Romania
I agree, FounDit. Good clarification!

I would have never thought of the bills on top of the icebox that way! I'm so glad I have someone to ask for help! Thanks everbody!
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