A nobody entered the diner the other day. He sat, ordered a coffee, and sat. No one really talked to the nobody. Maybe everyone forgot he was there. Or maybe they had nothing to say to someone who wasn’t there. And then he left, I think. I mean, when I looked he was no longer there. Maybe I saw him leave earlier, but simply hadn’t noticed. Or maybe he phased into the air. That happens sometimes, I hear.

I’m glad I’m not a nobody. I have a family and a wife. And I have friends who are very fond of me. And when I go out, people sometimes talk to me, and notice when I need something. However, there is always that fear. I can see myself waking-up one morning, and my wife recognizing me, but almost barely, as if something had slipped out from my eyes. And she would just shrug. A love no longer. And my kids staring at me, and then looking away from me. No longer caring. No longer obeying or curious about my day. And then I would just walk into the background of everyone’s lives, a mere placeholder like the plainest tree or fixture.

But, I have a name, and eyes that hold something that people can see. And I can walk into a diner, order a coffee, and sit, but still be there. I can have moments that belong to me. And I can also hurt people. Experience consequences. Be loved or reviled. And see the ripples from my touch. The most a nobody can do is retain a shadow, or be servant to a thought such as this one. But beyond that, the nobody is already gone, alive or dead. You and I, however, are.

Written for the Word of the Day Challenge.

2 thoughts on “Unwitnessed

  1. I often feel like I’m fading into the background. I live far away from my family, and if I ask them to do something in one phone call, it’s forgotten until I mention it again the next time I call. Out of sight out of mind.
    It’s not the same thing, I know, but I can see how it could happen in daily life… just sort of fade into the background.


    1. I can relate. Sometimes I feel like a fixture or shadow even when near loved ones, there but not really “there.” I’m sure they sometimes feel the same as well. Thank you for sharing.


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