Every morning I cross under an overpass on my way to Starbucks and there, up the ramp, nestled on a narrow platform in the armpit of the overpass, a tall man with a beard sits and talks. He has a white cooler and a bed made of pizza boxes. Sometimes I see him standing on the sidewalk when it’s early and not too hot but once the sun hits its peak at around 11 he always goes back up there toward the dark, talking.
His clothes are sometimes dirty and stiff but I usually pass within a few feet of him and he never smells funny. He’s always talking to someone I can’t see and the snippets of conversation I’ve heard aren’t just clear-sounding, he’s actually articulate, soft-spoken. Always seems to be talking about a particular person.
“Yeah he really moved up, though, and everybody telling him for so long that he wouldn’t…”
He’s a little menacing on account of his height and how fervently he talks to himself and the relative comfort with which he sometimes pulls his cock out to let it hang in the sun but otherwise he seems pretty OK. I’ve never seen him do anything agitated or aggressive. (Bob says he sometimes does the cock-in-the-sun thing in front of his bedroom window when he’s got the day off and he can stand there at just the right moment. Says it feels great, but I haven’t tried it.)
Yesterday evening after finishing Lawrence of Arabia I decided to go for a drink at Batch, this is about 6 p.m., and as I’m walking under the overpass (which I seldom do in the evening) I’m looking up and around, hoping for a glimpse of the guy, but he’s not there.
I keep walking.
About a block later I cross the street and there he is. He looks freshly showered. He’s wearing nicer clothes. He’s sitting at a bus stop with a keyboard on his lap. The cord hangs uncoiled by his feet, plugged into nothing.
Studying the keys, focused, he’s mouthing something to himself and typing it out. He’s not a quick hand on the board but his fingers move with familiarity like he’ knows what he’s doing.
I thought of stopping to ask what he was typing but frankly – and it’s the same reason I don’t talk to anyone at Starbucks or the bars I frequent – I don’t wanna get familiar, have to stop and chat whenever I see him. So I just slow down a bit, take in the sight a moment longer, and then move on.
And now, a day later, I’m thinking of that image of a tall guy talking to himself, sounding troubled and looking hermetic but also showered, shaven, and showing some kind of aptitude with language, typing his thoughts on a keyboard connected to nothing.
Ahdunno. Dropping the innuendo: he
reminded me of me.