Monday, July 16, 2012
For a moment it all felt very cluttered to me- different fabrics, sounds, so much movement and thoughts- I took a long breath and focused my attention. And as that strong moment of attention filled me, I looked from person to person, giving each a few seconds of attention: the bleach-blond rockabilly laughing, the Afghan guy smiling as he took a five dollar bill, his associate smiling as well, bringing his hand to his chest while referring to himself in conversation. A potential customer looking at her cell phone, a small boy eating a pretzel.
All sound seemed to cease. I saw each gesture as a manifestation of a deep habit. Every smile and laugh, every movement and step. It was all habitual and mechanical.
And as I turned from one person to the other and saw each manifestation, I felt apart from them, blocked from them by a bit of gray air around me that separated us.
For a moment, I thought they could sense my difference. I didn’t feel the attention of one person, but I felt as if they knew I was different.
Could they possibly know? Detached perception turned slightly cold in me as I began to fear them slightly, as I worried they would perceive me as other, as strange.