I watched my Miami lose to the Pats yesterday at the 8th Street Tavern in Hoboken.
Cold PBR on draft, my smokes, some chicken tenders while surrounded by NFL on 8+ TVs. It was bad for the liver, lungs and stomach but so good for the soul.
I was struck by a gent sitting across the bar from me. He appeared to be around my age (early thirties) and sported a black overcoat, beard and a face that spoke volumes.
He nursed a draft while unaffected by any of the games shouting from the airwaves around him. I would guess he just fell off the cigarette wagon. I bet he quit awhile ago and just bought his first pack in years.
He smoked one after another. His focus only shifted between his reflection in the pint glass and the burning of the ash. He watched the cig burn like it was a movie and he did not know the ending.
He smelled of a broken heart. I could not tell if it was a woman that crushed him earlier that day or the night before OR if he was just in the middle of life doing a general teeth-kicking. He look beat up and dragged. He looked alone on a barstool despite the crowd of pig-skin addicts that surrounded him.
Normally I would belly up next to someone like this. Strike up a conversation and, possibly, be an ear for someone who just needed someone to listen. I thought about changing my seat but I never did.
Something told me he didn't want to be bothered. The only ones he wanted close were Marlboro and The Blue. The image of this guy has stuck with me through today.
Someone or something fucking punched him in the nose and I hope he woke up today feeling a little farther ahead than yesterday. I've been where he was. Sometimes you just want to look up to the sky, shake your fist and yell, "I don't know if you're up there and I don't know what you're trying to tell me but FUCKING LET OFF... I get it so let me stand back up."
Cheer up, man. Even when its that bad, its never that bad.