9.24 The Silverfox

Most mornings in the summer, I get up early and bring my coffee outside on the balcony. I was never really a morning person, but as I get older, I find myself rising at odd hours. My balcony, at least in the summer, helps to ease myself into the day. Coffee doesn't hurt either.

I also like to people watch from my balcony. It's not a busy street, but busy enough, especially around rush hour. A few weeks ago, I saw a black jeep pull up and park along the street. A man stepped out, dressed all in black, and he had a shock of spiky white Jim Jarmusch-style hair. He strutted across the street, disappeared around the corner, and returned a few minutes later with a coffee from Starbucks. He paced up and down the sidewalk, smoked a cigarette, sipping on his coffee. Then he got in his jeep and drove away.

I didn't really think much about him until the next morning. He must have really liked the coffee from this particular Starbucks. Pacing, cigarette, sipping, gone. When I saw him for the third day in a row, I started calling him The Silverfox. It's like we were having a silent coffee together every morning.

The reason I bring all this up is that from up on my balcony, I could sense a confidence from The Silverfox that I often can lack, and at times am envious of. The way he strutted around, the look on his face like he had many important things on his mind, just the feeling that he's got this. Whatever 'this' may be. And the hair. I've been growing my hair out and mine just doesn't work the same way as his. I've got a few grey hairs popping up and I snip them out. The Silverfox has definitely embraced his white hair, and boldly so.

When I think about it, a lot of my entries on this blog are about my confidence or lack thereof. I'm slowly unravelling where and how my confidence got so deflated. I desperately hope that it is not too late and it is something that can be cultivated and built back up. Was The Silverfox always confident? Is he actually confident, or is this all an act? What is he afraid of? What keeps him up at night? What are his worries? Does he worry?

Last weekend, I'm sitting on my balcony in the afternoon reading. A motorcycle pulls up and parks across the street. A man dressed all in black takes the helmet off and it's The Silverfox. So, the guy drives a motorcycle too. Struts, sips, smokes. The next day, a Porche pulls up and again he gets out. How many vehicles does this guy have? I don't envy his wealth, just his confidence. And something tells me his confidence doesn't come from that either.

The Silverfox is like an aging action hero in a Hollywood movie. Sure, he'll get roughed up a bit, but he'll outsmart everyone. I need to be more like The Silverfox.

Paul Dore