#310: I Passed

April 21st, 2014

I passed a game of bags on Saturday. Plywood boards made into boxes, hole in the top to toss beanbags into from a distance. Underhand lobs. The beanbags spun a bit as they arced through the air before coming down with a maraca wham on the plywood.

I passed a couple drinking wine on their porch as they watched the game of bags too.

I passed a barbecue. A couple of them.

I passed a hot dog stand, a bunch of dog walkers and Fred from work, a surprise for both of us. He was out with friends.

As the wispy wind blew warmth on us, we talked about our day.

On Sunday, I passed couples, so many couples. Out holding hands, enjoying the warm, flirting and laughing and casting shy smiles each others way.

I passed workmen sitting on the curb, one squirting a ketchup packet onto his McDonald’s dinner.

I passed stores closed and open, ex-restaurants with city notices taped in the windows. I passed Verizon stores and bars with the windows thrown open, an apartment building where two young guys in colored polos sipped beer on their balcony.

I started passing more people, art galleries, chain coffee shops and other signs I was getting to the thick of an urban cluster.

Closer to the action, I passed an old man in a shining white suit. He stood on the six corners and cackled at the traffic. I turned away and when I looked back, he was gone.

“Yeah, he sort of disappeared,” a guy with long dreadlocks said to me in surprise.

Then he spotted the man in the suit, who had stepped into a store’s entrance way. The man with the dreadlocks went to talk to the man in the shining white suit. He said nice things to the old man. I walked on.

After months of being locked in, by freeze and rain and days just bleh, we’ve been set free in Chicago. Let loose to turn on each other. Time again to look at faces. Time again to watch passersby. Time again to wander and count doorways, see how many barbecues there are, amble down a street heading both toward and away from nothing in particular.

It’s time to stroll through the city again, seeing the worlds out there that our not our own. Some say life can pass you by. Nuts to that, at least for today. Today’s the day to walk and see. Today it’s time to pass by life.

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I usually try to link to topically related stories here, but screw that. Read about a woman who used to be a fake prostitute.

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You are currently reading #310: I Passed by Paul Dailing at 1,001 Chicago Afternoons.

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