People Watching

In my posts about beauty (actually most of post involving people), I’ve expressed my fascination and intrigue with people and the human form. I have this entire board on my Pinterest named “People Watching” and drawing portraits brings me utter bliss. Actually thinking of ‘People Watching’ makes me think of my friends and this one epic night at my favorite bar ever: Ikes and Jonsies in downtown Indianapolis. It just has such an eclectic gathering of people and electric energy that leaves you smiling and sweating after dancing and socializing your ass off after hours on the dance floor. While taking a break some young guys (a miracle in this bar as the average age tends to be over 40 and the young guys are usually hunting cougars) approach us: what are you doing? People watching, says my friend Shadow. ”You mean you guys just sit here and let people watch you?” Granted this is an inside joke and a funny reminiscence to me and my friends, I had to put it here because it applies to the title, but I will forever be able to remember this night and the fun times of my youth when I read it later.

It’s true though, I love to watch people. I’ve shared my deathly shyness as a child, but there is more to it I know. I do it now sometimes. I’ll walk away from a situation and think I didn’t say a word. My brain will be whizzing and whirling, actively participation, but not a word will escape my lips (although part of my people intrigue is eyes and I know that I deliver in them what my mouth does not say, although the smile usually plastered to my face I believe expresses my joy in the conversation). Really what’s going on is this watching, not judging. They have me captive in intrigue and yearning to read and learn more. I’m looking: taking it all in observing their energy, tone, and non-verbal communicating (this is probably why I tend to be rather good at reading people- I spend so much time listening and paying attention).

Last week while walking with my dad we met this fabulous woman named Maureen. After parting ways I say: I loved her, she’s our type of person. ‘I don’t know why you say that people are like us.’ What he was thinking is that this woman on a smoke break, who was unemployed, a recovering drug user and alcoholic was not like us. I was thinking that part of loving and accepting, so as not to judge others is to find bits of myself in everyone. Looking for them doing something right, and not focusing on what I find unpleasant, wrong, or point out mistakes to their living. I find commonality in each person, a little bit of myself (like my friends, each one brings something different. The way I love and feel for each is different. The little bits of them that I carry in my spirit and soul are different). But when I’m watching, although I find this initial common ground and connection to them, and love, I’m also looking for the uniqueness. What makes them tick, what makes them, them. Just like when I go to draw a picture, I love the features that separate and make us different (freckles, gap teeth, crooked noses, scars, etc). That’s beautiful to me and difference in background, culture, lifestyle all suck me in as well (drawing me in to silence in awe, as I want to find and catch these differences). Dad has been reading Seat to the Soul and I’ve learned that people have their own unique souls. Animals (elk, squirrels, yaks, etc) all share and have the same souls. We are born as individuals.

I’ve been spending a lot of time in the downtown library and there are lots of ‘homeless’ individuals here compared to the Midwest, and I challenge myself to not judge but look at these people for their individuality that they bring. Embrace it and love it. I am not better than them, but equally the same. I love it. You really get to know them the more you hang around too. At the library there’s the girl rotating around the 15 minute computer station. She cranks up the music videos and puts on a show. Singing and dancing right there for all to see. Her dreams? To move to Ohio and get the hell out of here. I admire and am awe of her fearlessness. To be herself and be uninhibited. She is a showstopper and I can’t help but watch her and smile, no matter the day I’ve had. Then there is the homeless man on the street, wheeling his 2 grocery carts around, wearing his shorts on his head and screaming who knows what. One day I watched him chase a girl across the street, yelling at her. It was quite hilarious. One night while watching a jazz band, the place was so packed, he snuck in the front. I watched as he swayed and moved in rhythm letting the music take over and expressing how great he thought the band was. A smile never leaving his face.

Love don’t judge. Embrace the unique soul in you and all others! 

BE, Love, Illuminate,



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