2am in vegas
everyone notices but no one sees.
i don’t really believe in luck or coincidence.
you will hear me describe things as “lucky” from time to time, but that’s only because i don’t feel like getting into the big spider web discussion of why i think things happen for a hidden reason or purpose that we may or may not know. and it always sounds hippie-ish when i do try to explain it.
right now i’m in vegas and it’s 2AM. no, it’s not what it sounds like. i’m here with a friend and we were back in the room by like 11. but not surprisingly, i can’t sleep and just have a lot of energy for 2AM.
so follow me with this:
it’s funny - or interesting i should probably say - how things become familiar when you’re in a place so often. like, it’s not a hometown feeling but you just get used to certain things, such as where to go for a fresh salad, and you no longer need any type of map, sign, or guide to get to where you want to go. even some of the people become familiar faces: you and the people at the front desk, and the starbucks directly across from the elevator, and the construction workers that have seen you out running at 8AM each morning start to recognize each other enough to where it’s a friendly nod and, “hey, what’s up?” as opposed to the formal, “can i help you with something?” or the cold shoulder ignore.. don’t act like you don’t know what i’m talking about :)
and to be completely transparent: certain “homeless” people have become quite familiar at this point. i use quotations because in one of my university classes, i was told some people prefer “houseless” as opposed to “homeless” and i am absolutely not the one to say what’s right and what’s wrong, so i want to address it with respect and kindness (duh).
it’s fair to say that everyone has their own personal opinions when it comes to homelessness, but what’s not up for debate is that it affects so many people and in ways you cannot imagine unless you’re in their shoes.
here’s my bias, just so we’re clear: i believe that maybe a decision and a half separates me from them. truly. they are people - they have hearts and brains and hopes and dreams and fears and favorite songs and all of the things that you do. it’s not my place to try to explain or justify the where, why, and how they are in the position they’re in. it’s just not. they’re human just like me and you.
so i try to help as often as i can. in any way that i can. and i do so without any type of reservation, because i see them as people just like me.
now let’s circle back to why i’m writing this at 2 am: i started reading this book tonight and one sentence on the very first page jumped out at me and it. just. CLICKED.
this book was a last minute buy and a last minute addition to my suitcase. (you can call it luck or chance but i think i was obviously supposed to read this book right now for a reason..)
everyone notices but no one sees.
what i keep thinking about summed all up in six little words: everyone notices but no one sees. so simple but so true.
i don’t think twice about helping someone who looks like they might need a little help. they’re human - i don’t see them as anything else, anything less. and i don’t understand people who treat them like walking zombies or the boogeyman reincarnated two feet in front of you.
it’s scary to think that you can become so immune to someone on a different life path than you that you no longer see them for who they are. you see them for who you think they are. or even worse: what you think they are.
it’s wrong. i can’t wrap my brain around it, yet i saw it happen time and time again tonight, and i know it’s not a lightning-strike, rare thing. everyone notices the homeless person asking for change, but no one sees them as a real person in need of help.
and while homelessness might be what’s on my mind right now, you can apply that statement to anything, really: global warming. racism. sexism. mental health. politics. addiction. excessive consumerism. gentrification. the list goes on.
it’s astonishing to me how deeply passionate some people will get about trivial things like pop culture while choosing to turn a ‘blind’ eye or engaging in dismissive behavior when it comes to the person sitting right next to them.
don’t get me wrong - i can be guilty of this, too. and i don’t think you need to become a martyr for every major issue in the world. i don’t necessarily even think that’s healthy.
but don’t get so distracted by the so-called “glamour” of life that you only notice, but don’t see, the humanness around you.
look someone in the eyes and acknowledge that they’re human. smile. you don’t need to spend money - i know everyone has their own thing with doing that. at the very least, show respect and kindness. empathy. it goes a long way.
everyone notices, but no one sees.
what do you think? x
PS this is the book i mentioned - haven’t finished it yet x