As long as I could remember I have always had the reoccurring fantasy of being able to disappear.
If I was able to pick a super power it would be invisibility. It may not be as flashy as super strength or the ability to fly but is as bullet proof as they come and goddamn if it’s not the closest thing to invincibility that I have ever known. My father always said women should stand out and men should blend in. In my family the less my old man noticed you the better off you were so this bit of advise always had a special meaning to me.
So what is it about today? Why have I chosen now to step out from the shadows to find my voice? I am coming out from behind the scenes to be scrutinized by a public I do not respect. Why do I choose to cry out for attention when everything I am tells me the opposite. Maybe I still have an ember of hope smoldering inside of me ready to catch fire to some small dried up part of my heart and spark me to greatness. Maybe I am being reborn, ready to be set free to run amuck through the streets leaving a reputation everywhere I go. Or maybe I’m just saying goodbye to everything and all of you. All I know is I can no longer slip comfortably back between the cracks. I am awake now and there is no turning back. God I can use a drink.
It’s another cold, grey Monday afternoon in Brooklyn. The bleak February sky blends seamlessly with the concrete sidewalks. Like a ship out at sea I can’t tell where the sidewalk ends and the featureless horizon begins. It’s 3:46 p.m. and I’m in my bar, in my corner, in my head when I go to take that first glorious sip. The door swings open and in stroll a sunny little group of six. Bringing their light right into my safe little corner. They order four coffees and two seltzers and I’m immediately worried. What the fuck just happened. I feel like a rabbit on the highway. Like the drunk girl in the wrong room, with the wrong guy, at the wrong time. The inevitable horror. That skin crawling moment that you wish you can just disappear from but they wont stop looking at you. I catch my reflection in the dusty mirror that hangs behind the bar making the bottles look endless. I straighten up. Shake it off, raise my glass and say a silent cheer to that noble no body. The lords of low standing. That everyday asshole. No not the asshole you think. Not the loud guy on the subway yelling about race or poverty, politics or religion. It’s not that creep that rubs his filthy crotch against the girls even when the train’s not that crowded. The whole time staring defiantly into your eyes and hammering home that feeling of helplessness and dread. And it’s not that beautiful man with the caring eyes you trusted enough to take home and fuck because you felt something special only to have him never call. Those people leave an impression. For good or for bad. For big or for small, they left a mark, A stain on your memory.
No this asshole fades away. I stand on the train and sit in the corner. I’ve seen more eyes roll then sunsets. It’s not that you never met me. I’ve done some ridiculous things and some outrageous stuff. We’ve talked. I didn’t remain a mystery. I wasn’t quiet and tortured and interesting. No I said stuff, a lot of stuff. I threw around words and feelings like emptying the ash tray out the car window. No it’s not that you didn’t notice me, you just don’t remember. I wash out over the years, get replaced.
What you don’t realize is, that is our design, our perfect plan. Solitude is our armor. Us few, we separate strong invisible few.