I can’t help but get that feeling as I stare at this girl, alone at a bar on a Friday night. She sits, looking like a stranger in unfamiliar territory. She leans over to my friend and compliments her on her jacket. My friend says thank you and turns back to me. In this moment, I feel terrible for this girl; she doesn’t have a friend in the world to join her for her evening cranberry and vodka. She was clearly just using the jacket as a way into our conversation. We need to talk to her; I too have felt lonely and it’s not a good way to feel! I lean over and try to make pleasant conversation over the blaring music. It’s difficult to hear so the convo fizzles. I looked back and yup, she’s definitely talking to herself. Mental issues, so sad. As I wallow in feelings of pity, an adorable looking gentleman enters the bar. He approaches the sad loaner, and actually… wait… she looks perfectly happy now. He’s her friend… or maybe more. My B. Ten minutes later, those same feelings creep up, as I see a tragically small man at the bar. Not like classified little person small, but just real short, like max 5 feet tall. I felt empathy for him; it’s hard to be dismissed by the opposite sex (because let’s be honest, I wouldn’t date someone that short) on a quality you can’t change. Again, as he slid his arm around the equally as short girl next to him I realized I could pack up my pity party supplies, there was no need for them here.
It happens all the time. While I sat and got my nails done yesterday, Phil Collin’s “Take a Look at Me Now” came on the sound system. Obviously, I got choked up. How can you just walk away from me, when all I can do is watch you leave? I mean, that poor guy! He lost the only one who really knew him! Those lyrics must come from such pain. Then, to really hammer home the sadness, outside, a dog with only three legs hopped by the window. I was done for.
But I ask myself, does the world want my empathy? Phil Collins could probably take that hurt and smoke it in joint made of hundred dollar bills and for all I know, that 3-legged dog has an owner who feeds him organic dog food and let’s him drink straight from the toilet. Maybe it’s time I quit feeling bad for others, quit putting myself in their shoes and instead take a walk in my own heels, which sometimes, really do hurt like a bitch.