Twinkle, twinkle little stars

I have written many times of the glories of both Atlantic City itself and the always-entertaining travel to and from the City Where Dying Dreams Get a Proper Burial (like here, here, here, here, here, and, most recently, in video form (now fixed) here). But last Saturday's bus ride to AC may have featured the kookiest guy I've ever shared a bus with, the gentleman across the aisle who spent almost the entire trip on his cell phone.

Now, it wasn't merely the fact that he was on a cell phone for over two hours (with occasional welcome pauses when we hit dead zones on the Parkway) that made him kooky. It was what he was talking about that earned him the prize. His entire conversation was about astrology and its link to his day and, more importantly, its impact on which tournament (poker, I'm guessing) he should enter. Two hours. No joke.

The otherwise sane-looking gentleman (younger than me, I think) called his buddy asking him to run some astrological charts on whether he should enter the tournament at 7:15 or the one at 8. At first, I didn't realize that astrology was playing a role in the decision-making process; I initially thought his buddy was calling up a tournament roster or some other pertinent info about the events at hand. But that notion was dismissed when I started hearing phrases like "well, Capricorn's in retrograde" being bandied about, at which point I got completely distracted from doing work and became engrossed in the loony banter coming from across the aisle.

It was eventually decided that things looked better for the 7:15 tournament, but the conversation continued about all things astrological. When I heard particularly entertaining nonsense, I did my best to surreptitiously write down these pearls of wisdom. My two favorites were as follows:

"I just had my lunar return one or two hours ago." (This apparently was a good sign for tournament success.)

"As astrologists, we're privy to the objective truth about things." (I hope my jealousy didn't show.)

And there was too much BS going around to get these as exact quotes, but these capture the spirit of the thing:

"I want to live to, like, 100, or over 100, just so I can say I've been studying this for 80 years, and people will think I'm, like, the wisest guy ever."

"Plus, 'Capricorn' has 'Corp' in it, like in 'corporation,' so that's probably a good thing. Yeah, I just realized that now."

Somewhere along the way, things moved from irritating to entertaining, and I began ignoring my work and anxiously awaiting the next nugget (like that he has never been--and likely never will be--friends with a Virgo but that he always gotten along famously with Sagittariuses [Sagittarii?]). Then things came full circle at the end of the trip when he had his buddy run a chart on the bus trip, because we didn't hit any traffic, and he wanted to know the astrological rationale for that. At that point, my head was pounding, and I was ready to get off the bus. But I did wish that I could go to the 7:15 tournament at the Tropicana to see how things panned out.

Honestly, you really have to take a bus to Atlantic City at least once in your life. Just bring headphones in case it becomes too much to take.

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