Hey, I’m sorry if this is awkward, but I wanted to let you know that I usually don’t do this and I know that you don’t even know that I have done this, but I still feel like I should apologize. You see I didn’t notice you until it was almost my stop and I didn’t know what to do because you were so interesting and my notebook was buried in my junk-filled backpack and I panicked and did a pretty creepy thing. I turned my phone on silent so it wouldn’t make any noise and I took a picture of you.
Creepy I know.
But when I saw you my brain started making up stories and I didn’t want to lose that, I didn’t want to forget what it was like to look up from my seat on the subway and see a man sitting across from me looking up like he was trying to remember something or think of something or maybe just checking out which stop was next. You made me think of a peer in a dark bar, sitting down across from me, a beer cradled between two palms, his hair kind of crazy, and an easy and almost loopy smile on his face as he said to me, “Office hours start now.” My mind whirled with the idea of a hacker working on a subway train so he can’t be tracked, but then I discarded the idea as improbable and not worth following.
But what caught me the most was a man sitting on a train in black leather loafers with a slight, slight heel, straight dark blue jeans that weren’t that worn and still wonderfully, dark, bright blue, and a leather jacket zipped all the way up to his neck. I was struck by the laptop sitting on your leg that you had propped up on your knee, the silver Mac on its soft travel case, your iPhone in your left hand and your right hand kind of tucked into your pocket, but not really.
I wanted some more time to talk about your dark, close cut hair and your dark eyes, your pensive face, and relaxed posture. I wanted to watch you in your element and draw conclusions from your movements and what stop you got off at, but as I said, my stop was coming up next and I didn’t have time. So I took a picture of you and I promise not one person will the hard copy of it, but people will see the portrait I make out it, so sorry, but also thank you, thank you for being yourself on the subway and giving me a hit of inspiration in a cold, dreary New York winter that is sapping my creativity.