Sitting with my sponsee at our favorite table along the sidewalk outside the cafe, we had a ringside seat for people watching, and could chat up either friends walking by or, should we get a little rush of self esteem and find ourselves feeling especially bold, attractive strangers.
It was a lovely afternoon really; sun, breeze, people of every stripe out and about, the best and the most entertaining (not always the same) of my fair city strolling along and enjoying the fine weather.
"Hey, isn't that what's-his-face? Your Great Spiritual Teacher?" my sponsee asked.
I looked down the walk, and made sure my voice was completely neutral when I replied, "Yes, I think it is."
We waited, and I sipped my iced coffee as he drew closer. In the back of my mind I couldn't help but hear the theme from "Jaws" playing.
He came abreast of our table, and I smiled and gave him a little wave. I won't play "I don't see you" if I know you from AA -- never know what kind of day someone's having; never know when God's going to tap you for passing along something He wants someone to hear.
Unfortunately, of the three of us in this story, my sponsee and I were the only ones not playing "I don't see you" and my Great Spiritual Teacher sailed past -- apparently not seeing us. It's possible, I suppose. He was wearing sunglasses, so there was no eye contact. He absolutely might not have seen us across the all of two feet between where I was sitting and where he walked. He might have been deep in thought. So deep that my wave was lost on him. It's possible. Surely an alcoholic with 20 something years sober wouldn't be so ... so ... petty ... right? <cough>
"Hey!" my sponsee said, "He totally ignored you!"
"Well... " I said, stirring the ice around in my coffee and sort of looking off into space, "in a case like this, I like to think he didn't happen to notice us because he was just in a hurry to do good."
Fortunately, my sponsee was also drinking iced coffee, so when it shot out of his nose he did not burn himself. As the spluttering and coughing subsided he said, "You, are SO full of shit."
"Oh yes," I said. "Sometimes. Sometimes."