I saw Jim Ridley yesterday, on Wedgewood, stumbling into the light from… I don’t know where. He was wearing a black suit and sun-glasses. He looked ovewhelmed. Maybe distressed.
I felt sick, like literally nauseous. I kept looking at him and I kept waiting for his features to resolve into something unfamiliar, the way they do when you’ve mistaken a stranger for a friend. Maybe it was because of the sunglasses, because I couldn’t see his eyes, but he never didn’t look like Jim anymore.
In order to keep from having a panic attack while I was driving, I had to go through all the reasons it couldn’t be Jim: I’ve never in my life seen Jim in a suit, let alone a black suit on a hot July day. But what if he were buried in one? Oh, right, he wasn’t buried. He was cremated.
And that let me go on. But it still unsettled the fuck out of me.
I know–I know–that was a real person. Someone who just weirdly resembled Jim and just happened to be knocking around a neighborhood he spent a lot of time in.
But man, I can’t shake the feeling that I’ve seen something you can’t go back from seeing.