Friday, June 14, 2013

Strange Things I Saw Yesterday

Yesterday I saw some union members on strike near an offramp from the BQE. They had the signs around their necks and the cups of coffee, engaging in camaraderie, pretty normal; then one of them stepped out into the middle of the street. It was a busy spot, cars and trucks flying off the expressway up to the intersection. He stood with his arms behind his back. If anyone stopped in front of him, he challenged them - or at least that's what I think he was doing; I couldn't hear over the noise of the traffic. They would eventually maneuver around him. He lit up a cigarette.

In Greenpoint, a few hours later, pouring rain, I crossed the street at the same time as two men, mid-block. As I paused at the yellow line to let an approaching car pass, the two men walked in front of the car, and it braked to a sudden halt. One of them dropped to the ground and started doing push-ups, the other stood next to him and gave the finger to the driver. Ten push-ups, ten seconds of the Finger. The driver did nothing. His windshield wipers worked patiently. Then the one guy got up and the other guy put away his finger and the two of them walked into a liquor store.

I write to you about these things. If I write them down and just store them in my phone, I never read them, and then I lose my phone or its data one day. If I write them on paper, perhaps in a notebook, I fill the notebook and carry it from apartment to apartment for years, and never read it.

I could just tell someone about these events, but they'll either not listen, or listen and then forget, which I would understand, because the events are arguably not interesting.

I could just try and remember what happened, but I probably won't. I don't trust my memory. And if I forget, it will be like these things never happened.

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