Is there an oddsmaker in the house?
I had a chance encounter recently at the Whitney Museum of American Art that I’m still having trouble believing actually happened.
If I had to pick a theme song for this particular Friday night in the Meatpacking District it would unquestionably be OMC’s 1995 hit “How Bizarre” because that’s the only word that fits the situation.
I had gone to the Whitney’s new digs on Gansevoort Street in my half-hearted effort to get the hell away from the DVR and walk amongst human beings.
It was pay-what-you-wish night, which caused a massive but relatively-fast moving line to form outside the museum’s front door. Once I was inside I went to the top floor and worked my way down.
The new Whitney building is a work of art on its own with observation decks on several floors that offer fabulous views of the city. I thought some of the exhibits were a little strange, but I was trying to keep an open mind.
Plus, the Whitney has a number of Edward Hopper paintings that I absolutely love.
After a while I decided it was time to go home and I was riding the elevator down to the lobby when I realized I hadn’t seen the exhibits on the fifth floor.
Oh, screw it, I thought, you’ve seen enough. Go home. The couch and the remote are calling out to you.
It's Making Me Crazy
But I didn’t want to bail. I have a habit of leaving places too soon and going just as the party gets started. I didn’t have any place to be and I wasn’t sure when I’d be coming back, so why not stick around?
I zipped back up to the fifth floor, stepped off the elevator, and locked eyes with my old friend Phil, who I have not seen in years.
It was just so twisted running into him after I had pretty much given up on seeing him ever again.
If Albert Einstein tried to work out the odds of meeting someone in New York in the same museum on the same night his head would explode. I was leaving for God’s sake, and it was just a last-minute decision to go back upstairs.
In many ways this felt like running into an ex-girlfriend, which I’ve also done.
We chatted for a little while and I told him about my accident and that I was looking for work.
There was nothing heavy, as this was neither the time nor the place, and, frankly, I don’t think there will ever be a time and a place for that kind of conversation.
Phil was with some friends, who were preparing to leave, so we parted company and I exited the Whitney—for real this time.
Nothing was resolved, as far as I’m concerned, but I am grateful than I saw him again and I can accept the fact that, for whatever reason, we have gone our separate ways.
But what I’m feeling most of all is shock. I still can’t believe we ran into each other in this city of eight million people.
I have asked God for so much in my lifetime, but even I don’t have the nerve to ask the Almighty to pull an almighty crazy-ass stunt like this. Maybe it’s a case of don’t ask and you shall receive.
As OMC would say, how bizarre.