Friday, June 25, 2010

The green jacket

Have you ever seen the movie Under the Tuscan Sun?

You know the old man that walks down the street everyday with flowers? And every day Frances watches him, tries to wave and get him to acknowledge her?

Well I have my own old man with flowers. Only he is not really old, and he has no flowers.

There is a guy that walks down Lakewood, literally everyday. He wears navy blue bike shorts, a white t-shirt, and a green nylon jacket. (During the summer, he also carries a white towel.)

We moved into this house in Feb. of 2007. Since then I have never not seen him. He is literally ALWAYS walking, on the same side of the road, wearing the same outfit.

If I turn left to go out to MLK Blvd, I see him on that 2 mile trek. And if I turn right to S.R. 60, low and behold, he is near K-mart. It baffles me.

Jonathan and I have had many a conversation about green jacket man. We have run through dozens of scenarios about his life, and walking habits. But my favorite is this:

To me he looks like Muhamed Ali's long lost brother. I imagine that he was also an up-and-coming boxer when he suffered a career ending injury. But because his opponent was illegally using performance enhancing drugs, Ali Jr. got a huge settlement and no longer has to work.

But his dedication to fitness and meditation has never faded. So he uses his 'training' time to walk. He walks to think about life, and clear his head all at once. He walks to keep his physique and fill his free time. And he wears the same outfit for no other reason than, 'it's lucky.'

Well, yesterday I had a break-through. I had the luxury of sitting at the light at 60 and saw him walking up in my rear view mirror. He was on a different side of the road yesterday, which was oddly uncomforting. This guy is SO in a routine, why after all this time is it changing?

But then, as he was walking up to the cross walk, we made eye contact. Eye contact!

It wasn't the glorious, long-awaited wave from Under the Tuscan Sun. But it was my own little victory and insight into my old man with flowers.

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