My Thoughts... Exactly!

Hey, you wanna know what I think?

Staring

Several years ago, I was stuck in a City Building in downtown San Diego. I was there without an appointment to take care of an immediate need; to clear up a serious error in the City’s records.

Calling for an appointment got me nowhere. They were weeks out in the scheduling and I needed help now.

When I went to the appropriate desk for assistance, I was told to make an appointment, at which time I explained that that would not do, and I asked the woman to please let the appropriate people know that mine was a pressing need, and that I would be waiting right over here, all day and into the night, if necessary, to speak with the person who has the authority to do something about my situation this very day.

I went and sat down and looked around me, wondering—as I always do at public “services”—what all these people were waiting for. How many of them were having to deal with an emergency, as I was? How many of them would much rather be anywhere else than here? It was clear that the people behind the counter were no more enthusastic at being at their ninetofive than were the people waiting for their number to be called.

I noticed after awhile that this guy across from me, wearing oversized pants and jacket, had been sitting in this position for pretty much the entire time that I had been sitting. And he remained in this position, looking to his left, staring into space—perhaps replaying some personal movie over and over in his head; the one with the plot that, in this act, cast him in this particular scene. [Enlarged View]

A perfect model. So I drew him.

Oh, and my waiting paid off. After four hours of waiting, I was directed to a man downstairs who listened attentively—after I asked him several times to please hear me out before making decisions—and who reviewed all the paperwork I brought with me. We sat in his office for over two hours, and as I left he promised me he would check my records against the City’s. After two weeks he called me to tell me that he had found a clerical error from two years prior, and informed me that their records now matched mine to the penny.

No apology was ever offered.

2 Comments

  1. Interesting to see what you drew, even though in a difficult spot. I think I remember.

  2. Hi David, I came across your website and blog via Illustration Friday. Just a note to let you know you are one great artist. Wish I have your skills, especially portrait, architectural and oil painting. 🙂

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