Because most philosophies that frown on reproduction don't survive.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Brushes with other lives

One of the aspects of communal living I don't miss from our apartment living days is the way that moments of other people's lives would suddenly impinge on your own, with no explanation or follow-through.

Yesterday, going down to the hotel office to get breakfast, we saw a woman sitting on the front steps and sobbing, which several police cars (including one from the coroners office) pulled up to the side of the hotel.

It is an element of big city living that personal tragedies can occur in the same building, yet one never knows what happened. Nothing will ever appear in the paper. It isn't one's business. And one is left wondering what tragedies play out on a daily basis in the sea of lonely humanity around one.

You are never so isolated as when in a big city, surrounded by other people who you will never know.


David L Alexander said...

"You are never so isolated as when in a big city, surrounded by other people who you will never know."

You must have never lived in Georgetown. I did, in the early 90s. I saw the human side of public figures. But the most interesting people were not so public. All were my neighbors.

And neighbors are easier to ignore when isolated by a half-acre lawn, lacking in sidewalks.

David L Alexander said...

That's Georgetown in DC, not Georgetown in Brown County, Ohio.

Anonymous said...

Nor is it Georgetown (north of Austin...)

Scarlette said...

It isn't one's business.
Kind of it is. Sometimes you have to step in.
I'm sorry but I feel a lecture coming on(I'm going to be my mother now):

"Think of how less lonely she would have felt if someone sat with her for just a moment. You know God might be giving you a little test and you might lose some of that purgatory time for the nice thing you did"

My mother is a saint, though.

I probably would have walked on, too.

Darwin said...

Well, she did have several family or friends already around comforting her, so we felt like intruding would be a matter of curiousity rather than help... But I know what you mean.

Scarlette said...

Ah, well my overdramatic mind envisioned a woman sitting all alone crying her eyes out. Well, there goes a perfectly good "mother lecture".

Although, if anyone has missed Mass lately I have a really good lecture for that; no matter the reason.