Saturdays are story days! I will post short stories, poems, or anything else that I’ve written in the week. Unfortunately, all I’ve really written this past week are my assignments and some of Book3, so I’ll just write something on the spot.
There’s people watching, and then there’s accidental people watching. I’ve done both. People watching is when you’re sitting somewhere like a park or a shopping mall and you watch all the people around, what they do, what they say, and how they act. Accidental people watching is what I did around two years ago.
I was sitting on the train, on my way to my new job as a temp cashier at Toys R Us for the Christmas holidays. I know. Imagine the craziness I experienced in that job.
The train was full enough that there were a couple people standing, but it wasn’t very crowded. Across from me was someone wearing and American flag. That’s all I noticed at first because I wasn’t really paying attention. I later noted that the American flag was a belt buckle. After a little longer, I realized the belt buckle was quite large, and so was the man wearing it. He was dressed pretty fancy for someone on the C-train outside of downtown. His suit was black, making the belt buckle stand out which was why I first noticed it. His shirt was bright red underneath, giving off a very dramatic effect. On his head he wore a black fedora and in his mouth was an unlit cigar. He lifted his hand and I saw that every finger had at least one gold ring on it. I checked the other and it was the same. Then I realized he had lifted his hand to get something out of his breast pocket. I kid you not, he pulled out a large wad of money. He spread them out like he was counting them and I saw that they were american hundred dollar bills. This man had over one thousand american dollars in his breast pocket.
I soon realized I was staring. I looked away quickly only to see that everyone else in the car was also staring. Looking back at the man, I think, Holy shit, I’m sitting across from a mobster.
Just then, the man looked up from his enormous wad of cash and saw everyone staring at him. He took the cigar out of his mouth and raised his hands. With the money in one hand and the cigar in the other, he announced to the entire car, “I am not a mobster.”
It sounded to me like something a mobster would say. But it broke the tension and a few people laughed. I watched as he made friendly conversation with some strangers and talked about how he used to live in Montreal, Quebec. Eventually I got to my stop and went on with my life.
I later learned about how prominent mobs used to be in Montreal.
And that is the story of the time I accidentally people-watched an American mobster from Montreal.