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Friday, September 13, 2013

One of the Many Things I Think About

I take the Number 18 bus when I go to see George; and just as one neighborhood is different from another, one bus line is not the same as the next.

The 18 is delightfully different.  From the cosmopolitan high-heeled rush of downtown to the grimy stretch pants of the upper streets, just one of the beautiful things about a bus ride is the ability to do nothing but stare out a window.

There’s a lot going on outside those side windows.

Why is that man wearing a winter coat in the middle of summer?

Do the dogs traveling with the homeless enjoy their outdoor lives?

Does the woman in the five-inch heels know that they make her walk like a drunken spider? 

The bus:  Where one’s brain is free to travel, unencumbered.

Sometimes, though, we see things that stay with us, wedge themselves into the wrinkled recesses of our brains looking for real answers.  Unlike the slow shake of the head inspired by the high-heeled, lurching gait of the fashion susceptible, sometimes what we see makes us think, “What spurred this?”

I am just blocks from the stop I need.  I sit up a bit straighter.  Much like the weird way I turn down the radio when I’m getting closer to an address I’ve never been to before, as if I will not see the house number if my music is loud, I sit up straighter when I am not entirely sure of whether I am one or three blocks from my destination.

The streets are remarkably clean over here.  I have seen with my own eyes the man who wanders these streets with “The Grabber”, picking up trash. 

I, too, am a picker up of other people’s garbage.  It is only natural, then, that I, as the kids say, heart this man.

I am staring out the window, then, admiring clean sidewalks, when a garbage can catches my eye.

Because sticking up out of the garbage is a walking cane.

From the angle, I am willing to bet that the whole cane is in there. 

Why?

I get off the bus, walk back to the garbage can.  The whole cane is there.  There is nothing wrong with it.


And since that day, I have wondered:  Who left a perfectly good cane there?  And why?

28 comments:

Shelly said...

Did you take it out of the trash can?

Eva Gallant said...

You wonder about the darnedest things!

GranTurismo Driver said...

Nice post, great blog, following :)

Good Luck :)

jenny_o said...

Someone who "graduated" to a wheelchair? Someone who experienced a miraculous recovery? Someone who was finished MC-ing a gong-type show where, you know, if you're terrible, you get pulled off with the cane?

Stop making me think!!!

The Bug said...

I do the same thing with the radio! Usually I'm listening to an audio book & I know I won't be able to figure out how to go back around the block without my full attention (I know I'll be going around the block again because I NEVER go anywhere new without accidentally passing it first).

Daisy said...

Food for thought, indeed! I hope it means someone no longer needed it and now walks unassisted.

Have a good weekend, Pearl!

Geo. said...

I love your observations! But the cane, did you check the manufacturer? Bic may have enlarged their catalog of disposable products --ballpoints, lighters, razors-- to include canes that cannot be refilled.

joeh said...

I'm with Jenny, I picture a faith healer,

"If you believe in Jesus...throw away that cane!"

Then the poor bastard fell on his ass.

vanilla said...

"Drunken spider walk." I knew there had to be a name for that. Thanks, Pearl; now I know.

Douglas said...

I have a cane. It sits in a corner in my bedroom gathering copious amounts of dust. It is no longer needed. It was purchased shortly after the Great Kneecap Incident and was my companion for a month or so and then was put in that corner where it still sits to this day. I know of no one who needs it so it will sit there, lonely and forlorn, gathering dust... right next to the crutches. And perhaps that's why that cane is in that trashcan.

Nessa Locke said...

I bet he came along something more powerful, a walking staff of magnificent status, with carved totems and embedded orbs, something worthy of Gandalf. I'd chuck my boring old cane in the trash if I ever found something like that.

Yamini MacLean said...

Hari OM
...Spider Walker dumped her training stick... ;~> YAM xx

Buttons said...

Man is it strange that our brains think the same?:) B

Silliyak said...

They got the "Hurricane" at an historic price, with a certificate of authenticity, and it's own carrying bag. The cane meanwhile is going thru a period of depression until it meets up with one of those rejected/replaced mops, romance ensues.....or so we are led to believe

jabblog said...

One person's trash is another man's treasure . . . or inspiration.

Delores said...

Picture someone just minutes before you spotted the can throwing their arms up in the air and dancing away down the sidewalk yelling "I'm healed...I'm healed...." Did you take a picture of the can with the cane sticking out of it? I'm thinking that would be a great photo entry in a contest.

Rawknrobyn.blogspot.com said...

The lady who walks like a drunken spider (you had me laughing aloud at that description) left it in there. She was wearing sneakers at the time and didn't think she needed it anymore. Backstory: She'd taken a spill when chasing down a cab in Times Sq last month. She thought the other passenger in the cab was Johnny Depp in dregs, but it was a little girl with her poodle. Stupid lady.

PS Thanks for your sweet comment on my article.

Happy weekend, Pearl.

xoRobyn

Mr. Charleston said...

I too turn down the music when searching for an address. I'm sure it's because my brain can't process two things at once.

Jacquelineand.... said...

Drunken spider! Teehee, love that turn of phrase which is uniquely your own.

When I was able to stop using a cane I ceremoniously disposed of one of them in the trash, (the rest went to a thrift store) as a symbol of my freedom from the hated canes; perhaps that is why your cane was in the bin?

Leenie said...

One of the great things about this blog is the fodder you provide for highly imaginative and hilarious comments. I heart Pearlwhyyoulittle.

Elephant's Child said...

I love your eye for the fascinating, thought-provoking minutae. And the skill with which you boggle my mind.

Kymbo Whitford said...

I walk with a stick and like most of us I have several. Ol' favourites, new and crappy, ones to be seen in public with and some that arent... Although I've lost a few, Ive never thrown a good stick away..what was that person thinking...

Al Penwasser said...

When I was a professional shoplifter (trust me, there are such things. They're also called Mystery Shoppers), on several occasions I had to wear a heavy coat in August into a store. This was to check if anyone would follow me around to see if I was going to steal something. I was AMAZED at how many times I got away with it.
So the dude you saw may have been going to work.
Or may have been a batshit crazy freak.

The Chicken's Consigliere said...

A cane in the trash. Well's that's a fine thank you for all it's service through the years. Al Penwasser-where does one apply for a job like that? Drama every day of the week!

Linda O'Connell said...

Well, tell us, did you keep the cane?

Kathleen McCoy said...

I love the meanderings of your mind, Pearl! Makes me miss my old commuter bus trips when I would do much the same. I so enjoy some of the images here: the drunken spider walk -- brilliant -- and the mystery of the discarded cane.

Diane Tolley said...

I cane see it all. Sorry. Couldn't resist . . .

River said...

I want to know if you kept the cane too. I'm always wondering about the many canes (and umbrellas) left behind in supermarkets, the old people come in supporting themselves with these canes, but go out without them. And they never come back looking for them.