Nothing like losing your ID, resigning yourself to staying in, and then, as you begrudgingly pull back the covers to climb in bed, you find the damn thing.
I was upset that my friends had other plans and that I was cloistered away in my new, largely empty, and fairly lonely apartment on this Saturday night, unable to meet up with them or get a bottle of wine for myself. It seems like my ID hid itself (or I misplaced it in a 3 AM stupor last night) to draw me to the one place I’m most hesitant to be—in bed, alone, at midnight, on a Saturday. This cocktail of circumstances is not what I wanted or expected to be drinking tonight, but I think it’s clear that it’s what I need. I’ve got my one cold beer on my nightstand and Gabriel García Márquez will be the only man in between my sheets tonight and I believe that is how it’s supposed to be.
Today was a slow day at work, so I spent a lot of time looking out the window. Even on a rainy day, Bardstown Road still has a decent amount of foot traffic and I’m a sucker for people watching. Lots of teenagers linger in the neighborhood in their after-school hours, and in the few months that I’ve worked at this location, I’ve had a front row seat to their antics. I saw something today that topped it all, though. We always have an open sign with balloons tied to it on the sidewalk in front of the restaurant because one of the owners firmly believes it brings in more business (If it actually did, I doubt I’d have the spare time to people watch). One wimpy balloon remained through the day, battered by the wind and rain, until I saw this boy, no older than 16, rip it off the sign. I curiously kept watching, wondering what he was going to do with it. Like he could feel my eyes on him, he turned and looked directly at me, maintaining eye contact as he bit the exhaust covered balloon, inhaled what little bit of helium remained, and dropped the latex carcass on the sidewalk as he exited the storefront’s view.
I was a teenager once (and it wasn’t that long ago), and I know that doing stupid, nonsensical shit is part of the experience, but this is really baffling me. His absurd brazenness is seared on my mind tonight and it will be for awhile.