I board the crosstown bus with two friends. All seats taken. But ride will be short. So, no sweat, standing, holding on to steel rail.
Woman seated just next to me looks up. "Would you like to sit?" she asks. I'm assuming she doesn't mean me. But—she's looking directly at me. At me. What, I think? What would prompt her to ask this absurd question?
I suddenly remember I'm 74. And I guess I must look it. This I hardly ever remember. That is, that I must look 74. But to her, I suppose, I'm an old guy.
I take action. "You're offering me your seat?????" I say to her. I have a strange, wild look in my eye.
"Uh...yes..." she says, with a slight tone of caution.
"So I suppose you think I'm old???"
"No, no...I...I just..."
I yank her up from her seat in one sure move. Then, telling everyone to stand back, I lift her above my head and begin twirling her around and around, à la early professional wrestling. She's actually pretty heavy, but I'm surprised at my strength. I suppose it's the adrenaline of anger.
"Offer me your seat, will you??" I cry as I increase my twirling speed. "Ha ha ha ha!! Now, what do you say? Now, who needs a seat???!!!!!" I see several hipsters in the back of the bus staring at me in horror.
"Catch!!!" I say to them and, in one graceful, economical move, toss the offending lady to them in the air.
A perfect throw, she lands with a thud in the their laps, unharmed.
"Anybody else want to fucking offer me THEIR SEAT???" I say, my eyes bulging as I look all around the bus. "Anybody want to go for a RIDE like the little lady just did? Anybody think I'm OLD and NEED to sit down, speak up or forever hold your peace!"
Heads bowed everywhere. Not a word spoken.
"Good," I say. "Very good."
I walk back to the woman's seat, which, of course, is empty. I sit down. I'm feeling my age, I have to admit.