So I’m just sittin’ on the train, playing with my iPod Touch (listening to jazz and playing Bejewelled), going to work on a late Sunday night to make changes to the database.
The fat slob I was sitting next to -- he spilled over into my seat, but I wanted to sit so I could concentrate, if you see how I mean, on my game – smelled acridly of hard likker of some sort.
Some guy got on the train and started passing the hat – actually a plastic bowl full of coins. He shoved it under my nose and I callously shook my head and kept playing my game.
The guy next to me sat up, looked into the bowl and tried to grab it . . . a tug of war appeared to ensue.
I stood up the way I used to in akido after a break-fall, with a hip pivot, back out into the aisle, out of the line of fire, saw an empty chair down the car so I just kept walking – all one smooth motion – I could sense gasps and admiring glances at my efficiency – sat down and kept playing.
I vaguely heard raised voices, and the guy with the bowl got off shortly at the next stop, with his bowl, but with loud imprecations for his antagonist.
I paid no mind, tho’ I did once again sense the public opprobrium for the offender.
I don’t know if the other passengers were actually embarrassed or upset at the confrontation, or viewed my callous discretion as admirable or appalling.
My old akido teacher Bruce used to say that the Old Masters were so together, that if the chair on which they sat collapsed, they would not fall – the lesson being that one should always sit in readiness. I’m not saying I do all the time but I was ready this time . . . 8^D . . .