POSTCARDS FROM PARADISE SAY "I WANT YOU"
For months now I've been using the same bookmark for my bus reading. It's one I got from a Las Vegas Blue Monday fan after I made a snide comment about Beck in an early letters column for the The Kids Are Alright series. It had a picture of a fortune teller's hands and the tarot cards she was laying out. The message simply said, "Why is Beck dishonest? If I am going to lose faith in one of my heroes, I should at least know why."
The fear and sadness in the hand-written note always kind of made me smile, such an honest overreaction. It has also served as somewhat of a reminder that things you say can matter, even if they are just offhand and silly. (I wrote the girl back and told her not to listen to me.) It's gotten somewhat worn over the years, but it was an odd curio from my editing career.
Today it fell out of my book (still In Cold Blood). It slid quickly under the partition in front of my seat, which happened to be at the front of the higher section at the back of the bus, and right by the back door. It landed on the floor at the edge of that door. The bus was crowded, and that little area had people in it. The guy directly by the postcard had headphones on, and so I was contemplating how to either get down there swiftly or get his attention when the bus stopped. Before I knew it, people started exiting, and one woman reached down and grabbed the card. She stepped off the bus, and I watched her read it before gently setting it down on the bus bench, picture side up. She started to walk away, but then stopped, turned back, and picked it up again.
The woman departed with my postcard. What was it that intrigued her so, that she would turn back and grab it? Did she simply decide not to litter? Or is the message now passed on? The only solution I can imagine that I will ever be able to discover would be if she pops it back in the mail and sends it to me. Otherwise, it's a literary mystery released to the ether…
Current Soundtrack: The Roots, Things Fall Apart