Lame Adventure 275: Depressing Sight

One night this week I was waiting for an uptown local subway train to take me to my destination, a movie theater where I was going to meet my friend, Felipe.  I was standing on the platform with fellow members of the beaten-down-after-work-heading-to-the-land-of-gin-and-tonic crowd.  Most of the herd was looking in the direction of the dark hole of a tunnel for an oncoming train’s headlights that were nowhere in sight.  I was focused on the tracks fixated on this depressing sight.

"Is that what I think it is?"

The curled green cover made me think that this little book, whether it held addresses, notes, or the answers to all of the important secrets of life (where do all my lost socks go?), had probably belonged to a woman.  Yet, maybe it belonged to a guy who is colorblind or indifferent to color or simply a fan of green and has a leprechaun fetish.  Whoever this notebook belonged to, he or she probably had no idea what happened to it.  As pessimistic as I am by nature, I like to think that it was not the owner that tossed this little book into the tracks.

Little green notebook meeting its depressing end.

I imagine its owner probably just thought it disappeared and entered the void, as lost things often seem to do.  Then, after realizing our loss we think:

We (thinking):  Where the hell did [whatever that is] go?

Through the years I’ve asked that exact question about the aforementioned lost socks, as well as gloves, umbrellas, tickets, lip balm, packs of gum, pens, keys, photographs, my American Express card, and rather fabulously two crisp twenty dollar bills that had the unmitigated gall to sprout wings before my eyes when I stopped to use a pay phone at least 25 years ago.  How that happened was I unzipped a fanny pack I was wearing strapped across the front of my body.  I dipped my mitt in for change and my wallet-less cash flew out in the summer breeze and sailed gracefully in tandem into the slits in a sewer grate.  I looked helplessly down in the grate at them looking up at me at least ten feet out of my grasp forever.  My half-deaf ears were in better shape in my reckless youth for I seem to recall hearing them snicker.  I vividly remember that sick feeling of loss I suffered as if it happened yesterday.  This was also the last time I  wore one of those tourist-type nerd packs anywhere on my body ever again.  Even though I knew exactly where my cash went, that incident also absconded with one of the many missing pieces of my mind.

My battered Moleskine notebook safe and sound ... for now.

19 responses to “Lame Adventure 275: Depressing Sight

  1. Is that a notebook or a tiny little New Testament?


  2. i love love love love my moleskin! it’s my bestest good friend!


  3. It’s a good thing you didn’t reach down into that grate after those bills! There was a clown down there just waiting for you!!!

    – MJM


  4. I am reminded of the sick feeling I had, for weeks, after gazing on the empty surfboard rack and loosened straps blowing in the sharp breeze upon retuning to the parking lot after a five minute visit in the grocery store.

    Thanks for this astute and evocative writing.



  5. I have to say–I wondered the same thing about the little green book–looks like one of those New Testaments.

    At any rate, thank God the moleskin is okay. I have an identical one!



    • Back in the day, when I was force fed faith, I seem to recall my prayer books were always gilt-edged, not to imply that my parents made me worship (or, mind-wander) in a basilica in Rome. Also, it’s hard to tell from the angle, but I don’t see a satin place marker sticking out of it, so my guess is that little book is as pagan as this scribbler.

      So cool that you’re a Moleskine fan, too, Kathy!


  6. Snoring Dog Studio

    I found that twenty bucks on the sidewalk here in Idaho last year. I spent it. I’m sorry. I tell you, LA, you showed great restraint not going after the book. I think I would have chanced it. But, hey, I’m an idiot.


    • Wow, that twenty bucks got around more than a $2 hooker! I wouldn’t jump into the subway tracks even for my precious Moleskine notebook, SDS. I’ve had a few Wile E. Coyote moments in my day, but even I wouldn’t risk the possibility of finding myself flattened by a subway train.


  7. I’ve just read your comment on M. Dowd’s article on Newt Gingrich and his wife Callista. Apparently you don’t understand the fine points of the Roman Catholic Cannon. Once the Arch Bishop of Atlanta annulled Mr. Gingrich’s previous marriage, it never happened! Newt is now in good graces with the holy see and thereby in good graces with the Almighty.
    In any protestant denomination, he could cry tears of penance, and be forgiven of his adultry. Yet each night as he retired with Callista, he would damn himself once again and awake the next morning an adulterous sinner. By converting, Newt has circumvented adultery! Unfortunately, many of those protestants believe the pope is the hoar of Babylon but then again those same protestants think the angel Moroni was Satan himself so were back to the lesser of two evils.
    Personally I would draft Jimmy Carter at the democratic convention. He was the last president I could truly respect in my lifetime.


    • Thank you for sharing your keen insights about the wondrous ways of Catholic loopholes and Mr. Gingrich, Lars. I feel very blessed that Metallica’s drummer would take the time to visit Lame Adventures! I tried to tackle the bongos in my youth but failed miserably.


  8. “Unfortunately, many of those protestants believe the pope is the hoar of Babylon” Ahh! But is he/she frigid?



  9. Bad pun: Hoar, as in hoarfrost? :>


  10. The little green book is almost certainly a Gideons compilation of the New Testament, Psalms, and Proverbs. I was given one such book, which appears identical to the one in your photo, several years ago, and I keep it in my glove compartment for spiritual refreshment during traffic jams.

    The good news is, no one’s personal information was lost on the tracks, and a fresh copy if the book is available from one’s local Gideons.


    • Thank you for taking the time to share your insights Jesse. Part of me wonders how it landed on the tracks but this morning, while waiting for the subway, I noticed a woman standing a few feet away from me reading The New York Times. When she went to take another section, she somehow lost her grip on her paper and it went flying into the tracks. She stared at it with an expression best described as helpless. Moral of story, these mishaps just sometimes happen.


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