Who hurt you?
I know you were at the end of a long shift. I was taking the red-eye and my gate had changed three times and the plane was delayed twice and the people I was in line with were gruff and frustrated. For some reason you singled me out. Do I remind you of someone who was rude to you? A former friend? Someone who hurt you with words?
Who hurt you that you decided I should pay for it? Now … I don’t take it personally. You didn’t pat me down or even make eye contact during the twenty minutes we spent together. You unfolded all my clothes, opened every deck of cards, examined all the coins and various other props I was traveling with. Went through each pocket. You pulled cards out and flipped through them, spread them on your table seeking … something. You declared that the cards were ‘suspicious’ and told me I’d have to leave them or check the bag. Given that I had just a few minutes to get to my gate, mostly because of time I spent with you, I let you take them. Fifteen decks. Ten of them my favorite green monarchs … which run about ten bucks a pack. You left me with literally no recourse.
When you finished, you crammed all my things haphazardly into the suitcase and then broke the zipper trying to close it. Shrugging and smirking, you walked away. “I’ll let you take care of that” you said over your shoulder as you left.
Dismayed, I talked to your supervisor, who promised to look at the video, but wouldn’t take my name or any other information. One of your coworkers sheepishly wrapped my suitcase in packing tape to hold it closed.
Whoever hurt you and however they did it, I’m sorry. No one should be made to feel that bitter, because inevitably it gets passed down to someone else. I’m going to let it end with me, though. I’m putting these words out … not in anger or in frustration (those feels came and went) but as a caution. It’s so easy to pass hurt along, so breathe and maybe … don’t. Next time.
And … who hurt you? The nice lady who came up the aisle smiling until you saw you would be seated next to me. I was in my aisle seat and there was a lady in the window seat. None of me was spilling into your middle seat. I had the armrest comfortably down. Yet … you refused to sit next to me. Demonstrably. You summoned a flight attendant and demanded to be reseated “because just look at him!”. She declined. You made a scene. They found you a place, and I enjoyed an empty seat beside me for the flight. (Thanks?)
Am I so hideous? Was I scowling because of the earlier incident? Did I remind you of someone unpleasant?
Whatever it was … I’m sorry you were feeling that way. I hope your flight was better, wherever they put you.
I’ve purged my negative feelings over these incidents … hopefully today will rise above.
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