Cone Head

In the spring of 1970, when I was twenty-two, I was arrested by the Orono, Maine, police. After a traffic stop, I’d been discovered in possession of some three dozen rubber traffic cones. After a hard night of drinking Long Island Iced Tea at the University Motor Inn, I had struck one of these traffic cones while driving home. It bounced up under the car and tore off the muffler of my ancient Ford station wagon. I had noticed earlier that the town of Orono had been painting crosswalks that day, and now realized they’d left their damn traffic cones all over the place. With a drunk’s logic, I decided to cruise around town—slowly, safely, sanely—and pick up all the cones. Every single one. The following day, I would present them, along with my dead muffler, at the Town Office in a display of righteous anger.

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April 22/29, 2002

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