Sweet Pete.... totally random encounter

Marginal Man
yes... Marginal Man
if you have to ask... well not that you will never know
but it may not be important to you

the other night I went to a friend's birthday party
it was at a house in Bethesda that looks like the set from a Stanley Kubrick film
modern and unique
clearly in a different tax bracket

the party went late
I should have ridden my bike instead of sharing an UBER
my shared ride caught a ride
I was offered a ride... they stayed later than I expected or maybe should have
then that ride pushed me off to another UBER back into the city

UBER is a great answer to the parking issue and the drinking and driving issue
UBER is cheaper than crashing your car or getting a DWI
UBER does not need to go around the block 35 times looking for a parking space

so... I caught this UBER back from Bethesda to downtown DC
it was nearly 3:30 when we left

on the drive to the party I asked the woman I was sharing the UBER with if she had seen Broadcast News
she giggled
she knew I was cracking on her behavior
like the Holly Hunter character in the movie she was being very Type A and giving the driver directions to the party

then on the way home
the guy within the couple that I was sharing the UBER with was also generous in sharing his directions
which seemed to be helpful
because I was not so sure that our driver knew where he was going

it was awkward...  it was late... our driver was old
it was unclear it the directions were vital
they were offered with the amendment, "there are many routes to go... if you know a better one... take that"
headed south on River Road toward DC the driver told us we were going the wrong way
well... we were pointing to DC
but I guess he was trying to say we were not going the most fast\efficient route back into the District

I assured him we were heading the right way
he mumbled something about this parkway or that parkway... I said just stay straight
it was only later in the ride that he uttered something about I-270 and such
then I realized he had wanted to go a few miles north to 270 and then jump onto the Clara Barton Parkway
yes... there is more than one way to skin a cat... no need to argue that
I just wanted to get home

it was late... everyone was tired
I feared our driver was going to fall asleep before he got us home
not sure if we were connecting
as it is offensive for a person to be told how to do their job

we drove... I was not so worried about the driver and I bonding
I was more concerned with him not drifting off the road and hitting a lamp post

the man in the back seat who was playing back seat driver
was able to regain friendship with our driver as our final miles rolled out

I spoke with the guy in the back who was battling me with directions on how to get to my house
he did avoid the lights at Tenleytown... but at 3:30 I was not worried about it
maybe he was right
our driver had sat dormant at a flashing red light at a clear intersection until he was alerted that he could go

it was late... everyone was tired...
3:30 is a better time for sleeping than for driving

finally we were at the drop off point...
on the final blocks of the drive I was talking to the guy in the back seat about the Salad Days documentary... DC Punk was not his area of interest... yet I shared the topic just the same
then at my house I offered up rapid series of good nights and then got out of the car
when I heard the driver say something about Marginal Man

Marginal Man? what does this guy know about Marginal Man?
I tried opening the door... it was locked... I tapped on the glass... he unlocked the door...
I leaned in and asked... What do you know about Marginal Man?
oh... Pete Murray is my step son, the driver replied

really... my brain slowed to process the information
Pete Murray... Pete Murray....
the man's black skin threw me off for a millasecond
then step son allowed things to clear up... no blood
Pete Murray is white... the color of his step parent would not effect him

really... Pete Murray's step father
I briefly spoke about I knew who Pete was... how he was friends with friends of mine.... how I dug his band
how Pete was always well liked and well respected in the DC scene
then this man filled me in
sure Pete is doing well... but he is losing his vision
he has a degenerative eye condition
he will eventually go blind


I have been in touch with Pete... he is in Texas... maybe Austin
we had talked bikes... mountain bikes and gravity bikes
but there had been no mention of this eye condidtion
perhaps our electronic connections through Facebook were prior to the onset of this condition

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