Often when I’m playing a gig, driving down the street, or shopping, I engage in people-watching. We all know what this is. We look at someone, and invent a story about them, based on how they look and how their presence impacted us.
But lately, more and more, I’ve been looking at people and finding them very familiar. I’ll play a gig, and see a blonde girl talking with her friends in the corner. She looks shy, slightly uneasy in her own skin. While she’s pretty, she seems to be trying to fade into the background – a welcome change from the high-powered barracuda’s I usually see when I’m playing. She looks and acts exactly like I imagine my 12 year old niece would, if she were 23.
Or I’ll watch television, and see an actress (is this still an acceptable term for a female actor?) in a bit role that reminds me a lot of my daughter, but all grown up. Or I’ll drive past the university, and see a student that reminds my of my oldest son, from glasses to untied shoelaces.
The Fed Ex guy dropped some stuff off at the office today. He reminded me so strongly of my nephew that I almost called him by the younger’s name. It was an almost disorienting experience.
Sometimes I wonder if this phenomenon is a blessing – me being given a glimpse of things yet to come, a way for me to see how the children that make my life brighter will turn out.
Other times it lends a tiny bit of credibility to my fathers insistence that there’s only a limited number of people in the world, and that we just keep meeting them over and over again.