Every Picture Tells A Story

It is a little after eight am on Sunday. I’m cutting through an industrial part of town. All the businesses are closed, there’s no one else moving here except an occasional guard dog.

They’ve Got No Reason To Be Here

Cover of

This is my brother's favorite movie (Cover via Amazon)

Something catches my eye and I look up. About a dozen balloons sail by not far overhead. A few fly alone, the others sail clustered. I look back at the road, then back up to make sure I saw what I thought I did. I did.

What is the story here? There must be a story, but there’s no one around to tell me how a dozen balloons got into this part of town. No one lives here. There are no schools, no churches. They aren’t high enough to have been in the air long.

These balloons have no business in this part of town. To their credit, they are moving like they know it. No lazy drift for these balloons, they’re moving east at a rapid pace and they aren’t looking back.

There must be a story. Every balloon tells a story, don’t it? I can’t stop to find out, I’ve got someplace to be. I drive on.

It Is Fifty Degrees


If towels could talk, I would not listen (Image by Greg Timm via Flickr)

It is still early spring, still a little cool out. A cab comes up a cross street, then turns in my direction. I look at the driver, he isn’t wearing a shirt.

Why? Why isn’t he wearing a shirt? It really isn’t warm out. Even if it was warm, I don’t know what the benefit of driving around shirtless is. No one wants to see that. If I was at the airport and a guy with no shirt on drove up in a cab, I would arrive downtown late. I would not ride with that guy.

I wonder if he is wearing pants. If he isn’t, I hope he has a towel or something on the seat. Actually, I hope he has two towels.

There must be a story. Every vinyl seat tells a story, don’t it? I can’t stop to find out, I’ve got someplace to be. I drive on.

There He Is Again

I make a turn, getting closer to where I’m headed.

There’s a guy walking to a bus stop. I know who he is.

Bus stop with Firefox ad

Bus stop. There are no pictures of the real James Brolin that suit my purpose (Image by Jill via Flickr)

The truth is, I don’t know who he is. I know who I say he is. I gave him a name based on how he looked and his status. He has long gray hair and when I first saw him he was homeless. He looks sort of like the actor, James Brolin. When I see him, I always think “there’s Homeless James Brolin.”

I don’t know much more about Homeless James Brolin. He just seemed to appear about a year ago. I’ve never seen him just hang around. He was always going somewhere. The few times I was near him we’d just exchange a nod of greeting. More recently, I’ve seen him going in and out of an apartment. I’m glad to see he’s got a roof over his head.

He gets to the bus stop and starts his wait.

There must be a story. Every bus stop tells a story, don’t it? I can’t stop to find out, I’ve got someplace to be. I drive on.

I Had Someplace To Be

I got there and the people who were supposed meet me there were not.

I couldn’t go back for the ends of the stories. Obviously the balloons were gone and I knew the bus had made it by that stop.

Fortunately, the cab was gone too.


38 Comments on “Every Picture Tells A Story”

  1. Z.N. Singer says:

    I always like the thoughtful ones. I enjoyed reading this.

  2. Katybeth says:

    Lots of unfinished stories out there….

  3. Great potential with all of these. There was a homeless guy in my neighborhood who looked exactly like a man I was dating. It was weird, except the man I was dating looked like a homeless guy, so maybe it wasn’t weird at all.

  4. We found him Captain!! says:

    You obviously were not driving through Mr. Roger’s neighborhood…..The shirtless cab driver was probably on his way to Paul Simon’s to purchase a shirt and pants.

  5. this is really thought evoking, i wonder where homeless James Brolin was off to?

    • omawarisan says:

      He is one of those people I keep telling myself I need to stop and talk to. If I do, I’ll let you know. I just have to remember that I really don’t know his name.

      Welcome to Blurt!

  6. Queen says:

    I was waiting for my commuter bus one morning, and it’s near an intersection where drivers turning on to the main road don’t wait at the stop sign long enough to make sure there’s nothing coming down the hill and out of the curve. Lots of near-misses. This particular morning, there had been a near-miss, and another commuter and I were discussing this. And then, there wasn’t a near-miss, but a loud bang as a van hit a car turning on to the main road. I waited to see if the drivers were OK. The guy who got his got out of his car and seemed stunned. BUT NO ONE WENT OVER TO HELP HIM, INCLUDING THE PEOPLE IN THE CARS NEXT TO HIM. So, I took out my handy little cellphone and called 911. The fire trucks came; I got on my commuter bus. I had somewhere to be, so I didn’t see the end of the story. There was no debris when I got home that night.

    Two days later, I came home to LOTS of debris. And a tow truck about to connect to a pickup truck that had left much of the debris in the middle of the intersection. I missed the beginning of that story, but I sure saw the end. Kinda glad I didn’t see the beginning, cause with all that debris, it was probably kinda scary.

    I guess I wrote all that to say that sometimes missing part of the story is A-OK with me.

    • omawarisan says:

      You’re right, in some cases the gaps can be very merciful, can’t they? No one wants to see anyone hurt…or naked cabbies.

      Oh great, now I’m going to get hits from people searching the net for naked cab drivers.

      It is strange how sometimes people pitch in and help and other times don’t. I was hit by a car at work once. Not badly, but enough to have a rearview mirror print on my backside for about a month. I was spun around and kept working. Within about 15 seconds I had ten people trying to help.

      But then youve got your guy, obviously hurt and on his own…why?

      • Queen says:

        i was hit by a car once. actually an suv. the only person who got out to help me was the guy who hit me. that’s when i decided not to sue him for making an illegal turn and hitting a pedestrian in the crosswalk.

  7. Todd Pack says:

    How strange. Could the balloons have come loose from a car dealership or something? Homeless James Brolin reminds me of a guy who used to live in my hometown. Back in high school, I saw him every day, and no matter the season, and no matter the weather, he shuffled down the sidewalk wearing an heavy black overcoat and a hat. Old guy. I don’t think he was homeless, but he was always there, at all hours of the day and night.

    • omawarisan says:

      The balloons really are confusing. There really is nothing but industrial stuff around.

      You get used to those people, dont you? When they arent there, theyre missed.

  8. Thypolar says:

    I love contemplating the ends of stories. Truly fascinating post! Thanks for sharing 😉

  9. Hippie Cahier says:

    I have to believe that eventually you will wake up and Bobby Ewing will be stepping out of the shower.

  10. Oh my, I was just contemplating my answer to this post, when my eye travelled to your sidebar…The Jolie has her own Facebook page!? Wow!

    I have a theory about the balloons…could some poor sap have been wrestling a balloon bouquet into his car for a loved one, and had them ripped out of his hand by the wind? I’m thinking shirtless cab driver is like the fools that run around in shorts here before the snow is gone…rushing the season. I have no theory about homeless guy…


  11. I think naked cabdriver was hired to take the balloons for a party but couldn’t get out of the cab, because he was naked, to retrieve his balloons that got away. I actually have to believe that because the other option for naked cabdriver is just YICK!

  12. Abe's Blog says:

    Everything is connected to everything else…except for shirtless cabbies. They aren’t connected to anything.

  13. Zahara says:

    There’s a message in here somewhere. Common theme: Things that are out of place. Red balloons on a deserted street, shirtless cabbie, homeless man living in an apartment? Hmmmmm……cue the Twilight Zone sound…..
    Even the folks you were to meet weren’t where they were supposed to be.
    “I’ve got someplace to be.” Or do you?………

  14. Kim says:

    Sounds interesting

  15. Moral of the story: Sleep in on Sunday mornings!

  16. Jane says:

    This is a good plan for a novel. Let the balloons fly off, you write the characters, and connect them all in some way. One chapter for each balloon maybe.

    Yeah . . .you can whip that out in your spare time!

  17. planetross says:

    Maybe the balloons escaped from a balloon penitentiary.
    Maybe the cab driver was going to a topless carwash!
    Maybe homeless James Brolin was going to visit his son homeless Josh Brolin.

    Maybe I shouldn’t have responded to this post. hee hee!

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