Yesterday was less than fun. I went to get blood drawn. I went for a chest x-ray. Then I came back across town on a bus to pick Jane up at her school. My hair was frizzy. My chest was wheezy. My attitude was one of full blown mully-grubs.
And that’s when I noticed the man sitting across from me, in his wheelchair, carefully and slowly wiping boogers all over the bus wall beside him.
At first glance, I shuddered a bit. It’s not like I don’t have boogers. It’s not like I don’t pick them. Actually, I’m good at it. If there had been a booger-picking-go-pro option in college, I would have been a contender.
I couldn’t help but respect the man just a tiny bit. His face said it all. Wrinkled. Lined. Frowning. The top of his head was wet from New York’s latest pop-up shower. The bus driver kept hitting pot holes as if it was his specific effort to throw each and every one of us out of our seats. And the man was just done. He was done with those boogers. He was done with the bus driver. He was done with the rain. He was done with the city. He was done with life.
I’d been sitting there dying to cough, and trying to hold it in so others wouldn’t think I was trying to real-life reenact the movie Outbreak, and here was this guy, so beyond done with his day, not giving one hoot if anyone was watching the evacuation of his nostril residents.
Now, I’m not saying all humanity should adopt that level of public-done-with-life-ness.
But there’s something to be said about having a bad day and just letting it all hang out. No fake smiles. No “just fine how are you’s.” Just a frown, a wrinkled forehead, and some good old soul searching while picking your nose. Or preferably, blowing it.
But you know what I mean.
I watched him for a moment and then coughed long and hard into my sleeve.
It felt so good.
The woman next to me moved out of her seat.
More room for me.