Patriotic magnet

May 30, 2012 ☞ Personal inventory

Because of the deceptive nature of photography, I’m going to claim that this magnet is four feet wide and dangles precariously above my desk. This may be hard to believe but you’ll have to come to America to uncover the truth.

In keeping with the recent theme of The Immigrant Experience, I present the second-most patriotic item in my possession, a gift from my co-worker Roy. It’s a token of congratulations for successfully emigrating to the US without being rerouted to Gitmo or Atlanta or something. For those that don’t know, crossing the US border for work is akin to loitering near a playground: you may not be doing anything wrong, but it sure feels like you are. It’s also not appropriate to pull out a cell phone camera. Or touch yourself.

My plane touching down made me feel a combination of relief and sharp nostalgia—nostalgia for the place I left. As I waited with my luggage, this sensation was rattled like an Etch-A-Sketch by the sight and sound of my airport pickup: a honking Audi Zipcar and friends dangling the old stars-and-stripes out the window. That would be the first-most patriotic item in my possession. And it is four feet wide, and it does hang above my desk.