If you ride the Washington DC metro train long enough you'll become familiar with the term "off loading." It's what happens when you're completely immersed in a really great book and the train operator says, "Sorry, folks, we're going to have to off load this train." And then all of us spoiled, grumpy, entitled commuters have to exit the train like babies being woken in the night and rudely taken out of our warm, cozy cribs. It's at this moment you see people for who they truly are. Watch their faces. Listen to their grumbles. Without context, you'd assume the train operator just asked us to get down on the tracks and push the train. Thanks.
These are the moments I relish. Simply because I use these instances in my life to remind myself how fucking great I've got it. After four years I'm still able to maintain a mortgage on our lovely condo; I have a woman in my life who STILL, after witnessing all my faces, loves me unconditionally; I have a beautiful son who can't be anything less than a messenger from God (or a message from God); I have feet and legs and vision and hearing and taste buds and a mind that never allows me to feel satisfied; I have vehicles in the garage; I have comfortable shoes; I have a job that affords me silly dalliances like video games and comic books; and I have a seat on a heated train car speeding me into our nation's capitol twice a day five days a week. I know there's more, but I didn't have enough time to think of them because another train arrived to pick us up three minutes after we off loaded. Interestingly, my fellow off loaded passengers were still angry. The ones with the shiniest shoes always seem to be the most put out.
And then I got to work and opened the newspaper and got reminded of even more things I'm thankful for, like not having a bomb detonate near me on 15th Street, or having an empirical country's soldiers occupy my country because they want access to our oil. Maybe it's time more people in this great country of ours got off loaded in the middle of their routine, mundane lives so they can think about how fortunate they are. Maybe the fresh perspective will help someone somewhere like it helps me.