You know how during your daily monotonous routine, walking from your apartment to the subway, walking to your office building from the subway, etc, you often start seeing the same people, but at different stages of the journey depending on how early/late you are on that particular day? Well, for me, I see the san-jose-sharks-jacket-guy, walking past me as I get off the ACE train and walk west up 33rd street. He’s ‘bigger’ in frame, has a pretty full dark beard, and of course he has one of those bright turquoise San Jose Sharks Starter-brand jackets that I would have drooled over back in 5th grade (I had an oversized NY Rangers Starter jacket, btw). Sometimes I see him way west which means I’m sort of early, but other times I see him right outside Madison Square Garden which means I’m pretty late, argh!
What I find interesting is why I picked this guy, since there are probably so many other people I see almost every day but don’t realize it. For some reason he stuck in my memory, probably cause I found it odd that an adult was wearing the type of jacket I associate with my elementary school years. But also it’s interesting how seeing this guy has become so comforting for me – he’s a constant amidst the chaos, an anonymous friend. And of course I’m really interested in where he’s going, where he’s coming from, he always seems to be in sort of a hurry, but I’d never try to make contact with him obviously, in fear that I’d disrupt our perfect symbiosis. As my Dad used to say, you never make friends with your wristwatch cause pretty soon it’ll start telling you the time it thinks you want it to be. You should appreciate the fixtures is all he’s saying, just appreciate them from afar.
A tiny addendum to this is that I was talking to a guy at a party a few weeks ago and he came out and said to me that I was in fact this kind of time fixture for him! Every day he would ride his bike past me as I walked to the L train on Driggs Avenue (I had no idea of course). And depending on where I was along Driggs this would tell him how early-late he was. And I tell the guy, “Well I hate to break it to you, but I’m moving next week, so I won’t be taking this path to the subway anymore.” Needless to say he was crushed but appreciative that I warned him ahead of time. It’s a crazy world.