The man at the front of the bus – the one that just got on? – would like you to know that he plays all the instruments.
All of them!
Look at him up there, this rhythmically ticking Man About Town. Those headphones are not just for show, you know. Those are serious appliances encompassing his ears, the kind normally found adorning men behind soundboards and in wood-paneled basements.
One can’t hear his music, of course, but from the looks of it, he’s thoroughly enjoying himself. And why not? Rocking in his seat, his head thrashing with a metronomic intensity usually reserved for those found in fatal proximity to an electrical outlet, he moves with ease from one imaginary instrument to another.
The drums. One suspected that he played the drums, and here it is. Clutching make-believe sticks, a drum part we cannot hear is acted out before us. Bum-diddly-bum-diddly – SPLASH! An imaginary crash symbol rings out, fills the air with the inaudible ring of metallic percussion.
Surely this man rocks without compare.
But wait! What’s this? A guitar solo? It is almost too much! But there it is. His left hand on the pretend fret board, the right holding an ethereal pick, this next part of whatever he is listening to consumes him. Wheedly-wheedly-wheedly! The woman in the seat next to me, also watching Rockstar #1, grins and motions with a jerk of her chin.
We smile at each other, toward the man up front, the man with the rockingest playlist on the bus.
The next part involves a ghostly piano, his fingers running along keys that only he sees. His hands pound at the air in front of him, and one can’t help but be impressed with his singular devotion to the miming of entire pieces.
The people across from him sigh, look out the window, look at their hands, close their eyes.
And arriving at my stop, I am forced to de-bus before he finishes.
It’s not often that we are witness to such a display of musical love and lack of boundaries.
But it is an amusing way to start a Tuesday.