‘On Route 66’*

A. Sturrock , Wilmington


[a homage to Hunter S. Thompson…with a little help from JP Eckermann

and JD Salinger..]

Cafe Concert in Flagstaff, Arizona. 

My brother is reading the blog. He re-reads it and turns to me. 
‘So,’ he mused, ‘I see you collect injustices…’
Does that mean I’m still a somebody.

He leaves to go buy a pair of ‘dude-boots’…..I strike up a conversation with a young lady seated next to me. Turns out that she and her husband run a homeless ministry on the north side of Chicago. We talk for an hour. Time seems to stand still as she talks about their ministry with such passion. In my mind’s eye I decide there and then to do something for somebody else. Soon.
Out the side of my eye I can see my brother pacing outside. But she is the epitome of selflessness, and it’s hard to leave the conversation.

Finally, I thank her for her insights and leave.
I could smell nobodyness…..almost reach out and touch it, it is so palpable. It is all around me, if I just know where to look.

Later that night we are dining at a sushi restaurant. It’s a busy, popular place , and I see many faces, but none that resembles what I had felt earlier in the day.
Then my eyes fixed on one of the waiters.  It was an Eckermann experience. ‘Plates and dishes flew from his hands upon the table; nothing was spilt; no one was incommoded. Quite absorbed in his work, the man was nothing but eyes and hands….’
Some people might call that ‘being in the flow’…I call it practicing nobodyness.
Turns out, it has been a perfect day for nobodyness.

Seymour Glass [Franny Glass’s brother] once said: “all we ever do is go from one piece of holy ground to the next…”
Was he ever wrong?


*a song by The Rolling Stones