No, I don’t know this woman. I had brunch this past weekend at a tiny hole-in-the-wall restaurant in the super trendy and very hipster area of Los Angeles called Silverlake, and my highly sought after table (for which I had to fight off several other hungry diners) was right at the street curb teetering on the brink of falling into racing traffic – to allow pedestrians to still use the sidewalk unencumbered. And that’s when this very kind lady walked up to me.
“Is that your Mazda over there?” she shrieked at me, and pointed across the street to a car legally parked with no visible trouble spots or cause for alarm.
“uh, no.” I said, in a barely audible breathiness that she probably couldn’t have heard over the passing cars.
“Hey, is that anybody’s Mazda over there?” she walked away, staring down everyone else who was trying to eat their biscuits and gravy (of course these biscuits taste like rosemary, and the gravy isn’t really gravy, it is something they call “Lacto Fermented Hot Sauce”). No one responded. Looks of concern for her, and shaking heads. No one would fess up to actually owning the car that she vigorously pointed out over and over again.
And so, she moved back to my corner, and decided to make a phone call. I decided that I should pull out my phone and check to see if I had any messages from my friend who was late, and who was really missing out on this amazing encounter.
Before I did, I clicked over to the camera function, lowered the phone between my knees, and tilted it up so slightly. Then, while I turned to look at the traffic behind me, I pressed the button.
I still don’t know if I should be ashamed for taking the photo, I mean, really, I don’t know her, and the photo is all sorts of “without her knowledge or consent.”
Look at that outfit. How could I not photograph that and share it with the world?
If she tracks me down in twenty years, she’ll thank me. I’m sure of it.