round and round...

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Second thoughts...

We frequent a place in our neighborhood for breakfast on Saturday mornings. Most people in New York do brunch. We do breakfast. The place we go to does not do brunch, they do breakfast. And they do it so well and so old school that you can't help but go back again and again. Best pancakes in the world. The place is so good that as you wait in line (and you do wait in line) servers come out with trays of cookies and mugs of coffee and orange wedges. The guy who owns it (the son of the guy who started it in 1936) figures if you want to come to his place so bad that you'll wait in line he'll at least make the wait as pleasant as possible. Gus is his name. He's fantastic. He remembers you after the very first meeting. He jokes with MT that he's going to steal me away from him, so don't slip up. He once told MT, "She's real pretty. Like that Britney Spears." The thing is - he meant it as a compliment. This was before she was certifiably nuts.

There's a woman who works there who's the only one who never smiles. I usually make a snide comment about her to MT. Something like, "Would it kill her to smile once in awhile?" I always wonder what the hell is so bad that she's so sour all the time. The rest of the staff is so friendly and outgoing. She sticks to herself and scowls.

Yesterday I was walking home from the market. I stopped after work to get some things for dinner. The custom in my neighborhood is to leave cans out the night before recycling so that folks who need some extra cash can collect them and get the 5 cent deposits from the recycling machine near the market. Sometimes they're homeless, sometimes they're just trying to make ends meet.

I rounded the corner and saw the pushcart piled with big, black garbage bags of cans. I moved over to the edge of the sidewalk so the person behind it could push past with room. As we passed each other I saw that the person was the woman from our breakfast spot. The scowling woman. In an instant I realized that the scowl isn't a scowl, it's just the look of defeat. She's exhausted, she's not mean. I don't know that I have ever felt so sheepish in my life.

Life is full of lessons, friends. I'm learning new ones every day.


6 What people are saying:

Blogger Anisa rambles...

great post. we should all remember that most everybody is just trying to do the damn best they can...thanks for the reminder. :)

7/18/2007 09:26:00 AM

Blogger patti_cake rambles...

Hey at least you learned a lesson and sometimes we all have to remember "until you walk a mile in someone's shoes"....
That place sounds just fabby!

7/18/2007 12:55:00 PM

Blogger Jenn rambles...

Wow. I saw that comin'.

It's easy to assume...when we get caught up in our lives. I know...I've done it. Definitely a good reminder.

I love those breakfast joints...we have one here that is YUMMY!

7/18/2007 04:34:00 PM

Blogger Rachel rambles...

I just read your blog for the 1st in months too - WTF - you're getting married? WOOHOO!

7/19/2007 02:30:00 AM

Blogger Retro Girl rambles...

You are so beautiful ya know that?! *hugs* A lot of people out there would've just scoffed and perhaps made a dig about her being a 'bag lady' or something....but you saw her in her most vulnerable moment, and saw what was truly going on....

We never really know what private hell or turmoil another person is going through...a reminder that we just need to give people a chance...and be kind to them. They may REALLY need it. :-) Bring her a flower or something next time you go there...with a note "just because".

7/19/2007 10:34:00 AM

Blogger James Burnett rambles...

Deep post. And sorry I haven't been by for a while. Mrs. B is w/child, and helping her manage morning (and afternoon, and evening) sickness has become a full-time job in addition to my paid work.

Anyway, it looks like things are going well for you, and again, a very insightful post.

BTW, c'mon back and finish what you wanted to say about the love/gang sign thing. By now you know I'd never bite anyone's head off for saying the disagreed with me on my blog. No worries there. I kinda prefer when there's some disagreement. It makes me think harder about how I formulated my own opinion.

8/23/2007 10:48:00 PM


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