As a commuter by train, I derive immense joy from observing the world from above. I ride in the top half of the car for two reasons:
- Single seating – no weirdos can plunk down next to me and tell me their life story
- As passers-by don’t notice the top half of the train very often, I can usually people watch undetected
The train pulled into the Tall Tree station at College Ave (names changed to prevent Webternet stalkers). I observed The Annalog leave her train car and head down the tunnel. Then, something caught my eye.
Two men ran towards each other. The first man, in his mid-forties wearing a flannel and torn jeans reminiscent of the Seattle grunge movement, was holding out a bill – I was unable to determine the value. The other man, a twenty-something Asian man with short spiky hair and a short black nylon jacket over a white collared shirt and black trousers, grabbed the bill, handed the first man a small orange box, and jumped onto the train just as the doors were closing. The wordless exhange was over in the blink of an eye.
Fascinated, I leaned forward. The box was about the size of a box of animal crackers, but it was safety orange and unlabeled. As the train pulled away, I watched the Old Kurt Cobain as he headed towards the parking lot. Was he meeting someone to complete the deal? Heading downtown to speak to Fat Tony? About to snort some good times in the backseat of his dented Corolla? I’ll never know.