7:32 — Cooper’s Coffee 19 minutes
5:46 — Max 30 minutes
I was astonished to have a seat on the Max, but apparently they’re commonplace if one takes a train half an hour later than I’d normally. I wouldn’t know this, but at the Max station, on a public street in the heart of downtown and next to the door to Borders, a man had forced a woman into a corner between two buildings and was bellowing profanity into her face, slamming his body into hers to bounce her off the wall, and waving his balled fists in her face and over her head. She was screaming and crying and trying to get away.
The commuters split themselves into groups; those who looked away, those who watched with interest, and those who went up the block so as to have space between themselves and the spectacle. The man was about my size, and I considered directly intervening, but decided it would be a bad idea. The woman was being terrorized but not hurt, and I would lose any fight with the man unless I ditched coat, hat, and bag before engaging. Instead, I called 911, stepped in close and announced to the man “911″, and stepped back (thinking he’d have to step toward me to hit me, and that would let the woman free).
He must have understood me; he started berating her because now people were calling the cops.
After a time he decided to let her loose. The tone of the thing seemed not to be domestic, but business, somehow. He was pushing a bicycle when he left, so I can’t see him as her pimp. Drug supplier? Or customer? No way to tell, now.
I don’t feel particularly noble. I was supposed to set my jaw, lose my computer and a tooth or so, and let her get away in the fracas. I’m pretty sure it wasn’t a good choice, but I still feel lessened somewhat for not having sacrificed and pummelled.
Ah, manhood, how are you so very different from vanity?
In my defense, I believe that if he had done something more than bellow I would have risked life, limb, and Jarvis. I feel that the woman and I are both pleased that he wasn’t moved to go that far, each for our own reasons. The police never did show up, although a car with lights and sirens blaring did show up a block away, where they tarried and asked onlookers for information. I could see them, just not get their attention from where I was.
Crossposted from Epinephrine & Sophistry