Well, I’ll be damned. It’s Monday. This afternoon, it was pretty blustery in Toronto so much that I’m sure at least 6 baby birds got caught in my afro and are currently making nests: the joy of procuring pets (and dinner) for free.
This past weekend I left town via the train to visit my family. It was great. Got to use my natural Jamaican accent with only a small amount of mocking (as opposed to Toronto where people cleverly deduce that I’m going to shoot them based on my nationality). This got me thinking about an experience I had a while ago that would have made me blush if the darkness of my skin allowed for it. Like last weekend, it started off on the train to see my family.
I sat down in a seat that was grouped with three others, generally trying to mind my own damn business. I pulled out the script for a play I was participating in and worked on memorising my lines. It is here that I will mention the play was written in French. What does that mean? Once focused, my brain recalibrated itself to NOT English. As I pored over the pages, a very attractive guy sat in the seat across from me. I tried not to let that distract me as I really needed to memorise my lines.
I glanced up at one point and he had fallen asleep. His ticket fell from his hand and landed softly on the ground between his feet. I thought for a brief moment that I should retrieve it like a Good Samaritan but then common sense kicked in. Hell no. There’s no fucking way. I’d bend over to get it and with any luck, he’d wake up to find my face in his crotch (the seats were close; our knees were touching). I refuse to go to jail, so I let that shit be. I kept memorising lines.
A few minutes later I heard a startled snort across from me. I looked up from my script again and noticed my seat buddy was frantically searching his immediate surroundings with more skill than a pedophile in a teen chatroom. I figured he was looking for his ticket so I said, “I think you dropped your ticket on the ground.”
Normal conversation, right? Wrong.
My stupid ass forgot I was reading French, but was also a little nervous to talk to him because I thought he was cute, so I had a medley of French, Jamaican, and a pinch of English accents. Where in God’s name the English accent came from, I don’t have an inkling of a damn clue. God is a troll.
The guy looked at me inquisitively, sort of with the question, Where are you from? written on his face. Instead he asked:
“So do they check the tickets on the train often? I’ve never ridden it before.”
“Are you coming from Toronto or visiting friends?”
“I’m sorry. Did I offend you?”
I was so fucking embarrassed about the accent mishap I couldn’t even talk.My dumbass self… He tried to be friendly and make conversation. I stared back at him like a creep.