What a glorious day today. Or from the look of it, it seemed glorious. The high is a brilliant 57, and the forecast says rain, possibly, or at the very least it’ll be cloudy. Simply glorious. I don’t wake up till about twelve thirty, and that’s okay because I always blame sleeping in on my inordinate amount of sleep debt I’ve built up through college and high school. Who am I kidding? I’m still building on that sleep debt. If I live long enough, I’ll die from lack of sleep I suppose. More than likely my heart will just give up at the ripe old age of 45, due to the smoking, drinking, and other stuff my doctor told me to stay away from. Roller-coasters and such. “Smoking, drinking and roller-coasters?” you say. “These are what every twenties something young boy should be enjoying right now.” Right you are, observant reader. But I’ve got a terribly crippling heart condition and the doctor says I can’t indulge in these things. “Not even roller-coasters?” you ask in disbelief. Especially not roller-coasters, I’ve been told.
I digress though, apparently. I was going on about how beautiful of a day it was, and boy was it ever. The perfect day to deposit a check at a credit union that’s downtown and toward the west. Which is like, fine and all, I suppose, but fuck it’s a long ways away from what I’m used to. In Austin, we’re talking about a fifteen minute drive, if that. As long as there’s no train of course. (My credit union was next to a train tracks…) Here, in old New York city, I’ve got to take the 6 to 42nd, get on the shuttle, then (I mean I don’t have to do this. I could just walk) take the one or 2 to like… 34th? I don’t know. Then I end up walking like an avenue and a half. If it sounds like I’m complaining, and I guess I am. But despite not having had anything to eat, the time being 3:00, the credit union closing at 4:00, and me not being able to find my check, I was actually doing pretty well in the happiness department. That is to say I was pretty fucking joyed. I had the complete works of fiction by Borges and that shitty black umbrella we all own, and it was unnecessarily windy outside. Let’s go cash a check, I say. So that’s what I did. And everything was going according to plan. Rather, everything went according to plan. I made it to the credit union at approximately four o’clock and the whole event was henshin a go go baby. As I was filling out a shared branch form, something happened.
“Do you know today’s date?” she said.
“She” is referring to the girl that was standing next to me, also filling out a shared branch credit union form.
“October 15th,” I replied, thinking she was lucky that I knew tomorrow was my birthday, because otherwise I would have no clue as to what todays’ date was. And then we went back to filling out those god damn forms. I did get a good look at her though. Seeing as we were standing right next to each other, and we were the only people in the building under thrity years old, I could feel we had some sort of connection. If all those ancient thirty plus-ers decided to declare a jihad on the beautiful and virile youth of today, “date” girl and I would be the only soldiers in the vicinity. Sporting a scarf and a nose ring (not the one where her septum is pierced, the other one…) which are endlessly attractive on certain kinds of girls, I will admit readily that I was smitten. The short black hair that was just long enough to be tied, in the back, into a pseudo pony tail a la Misty, pretty much sent me into shock. As soon as I was done with the necessary check depositing forms, I was called forth by the next available teller.
Curse you, cruel world! Will I not get some ghost of a chance to attempt conversation with this glorious creature of the city? Can I not catch some sort of–
What’s this? As I soon as I am called up to the teller, the teller next to my teller tells calls up the next customer. It’s the other twenties something. The “date” girl. We’re right next each other, depositing and cashing checks. I steal a glance. She’s wearing a black and white striped sweater, and a long black skirt; the whole ensemble made her look a lot older then I originally thought she was. Both her voice and face suggested she didn’t smoke, and nose ring told me she either had or currently has a boyfriend.(“How do these details tell you anything?” you might wonder to yourself. It doesn’t really matter. You weren’t there, and they tell you nothing. So just let me tell this and you just do the listening, okay?)
And everything seems like it should be working out. We’re right net to each other, we’re both putting money into our checking accounts… we’re both wearing sweaters. AND! she’s holding a sketchbook or something of some kind. When I noticed this a lot conversation starters went through my mind. One of them stuck out though. Probably for its brevity and the sincere amount of interest that was couched behind it: “Do you draw?” Unfortunately I never asked this question because, as it turns out, just as Paul Valdez had always posited, it just so happens, I am chicken shit. Whatever that means. Time progresses quite normally despite my fuck-ups. We both gave signatures and left with money in the bank. As we left the credit union, I followed a few paces behind. As long as she didn’t make a right at 8th, I could keep following and it wouldn’t actually be stalking because I needed to get to grand central and I had no time limit. Not that it matters any, but she did make a left on 8th, and I followed, humming, whistling, and sometimes softly singing “Brief Candles,” by the Zombies. Also, I decided to catch up and pass her. I pulled the old, follow by being followed trick. Does anyone one know what I’m talking about? It works like a charm if you’re halfheartedly tailing someone. Too bad for me “date” girl crossed halfway between 31st and 32nd. Jaywalking to catch a bus, I noticed her cross out of my periphery.
Fuck the world and all of its inhabitants namely me.