He came up to me at 135th, scabrous and gristled. This was last Christmas Eve, on the 358.
"You give a good ride, man."
"Well, thanks, man. You got plans for the holiday?"
"Yeah, I'm gonna get off here, go over to KFC."
"Oh, right on."
"Yeah, gonna grab some dinner for my girlfriend. We're gonna stay in tonight, watch some TV."
"Sounds good to me, chance to relax. 'What it's all about, right?"
What I felt was not pity but admiration. He existed outside of all the shame, the hunger for status that drives so many of us, leading us to places of inadequacy and judgment, washing away the awareness of what's truly important. I daresay his Christmas Eve was, in its barren simplicity, likely more stress-free than any number of his fellow Seattlelites.