Nostalgia

“Good morning. I’m asking for your support for a constitutional right to vote and for the elimination of private money from our federal elections.”

The man I addressed possessed a certain bearing, a certain stature. He was about six feet tall, apparently fit for a man in his 60s or 70s. As I looked at him, and as I finished my request, I could see a woman I presumed was his wife and who was now some ten feet or so just past him outside the back door of the Food Coop. Her face suddenly brightened as if she hoped (or so I imagined) that her husband would make some positive response to my request.

Instead, he replied as he retrieved a shopping cart, “I’ll think about it.”

A second or two of pause: “I’m thinking about it.”

Another second or two, and he concluded, turning away with his shopping cart, “Ok, I thought about it.”

And with that, the woman’s face fell, and he proceeded to follow her into the Food Coop.

Some minutes later, I saw them emerge from the back door of the Food Coop, and I could see them proceed silently towards a new Mercedes sedan.

And now I imagine that the woman’s face had brightened as if she had been a Penelope, and with hope earlier, as if her husband might finally return to her, within her nostalgia, as Odysseus.

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