Flight, unfortunately, is not my innate super power. Instead, I have super-recognition. I’m able to remember people’s faces years after having seen them, and I’m able to discern a changed or aged face from its previous version with ease. My diagnosis for this is simply a few online tests that I’ve passed (I’m not employed by my local police department or anything), plus, the way I creep out my loved ones with my “gift”.
I was struck by this ability struck the other day, when I saw a young man pass me in a city crosswalk. I was leaving a grocery store parking lot, and he was in a dapper business suit, carrying a few items from the store, a bagged salad, some carrot sticks, a drink. I recognized his misshaped outer ear, as though it was injured once, and his serious expression, topped by hair that he seems to put a lot of effort into. I recognized him as the young man who makes my sandwiches at Jersey Mike’s!
I didn’t run up to him, nor was I planning to. I didn’t want to freak him out. He appeared to be going back to his other job at the tall Fidelity Building. What I did instead was congratulate him in silence. He was no longer in a ball cap and red apron, asking if I wanted my turkey and provolone Mike’s Way. He wasn’t affectionately calling me boss the way they do at Jersey Mike’s. He had grown up, was making better decisions about food, and he was dressed to impress at his new job in finance.
When I see the passage of time in the evolution of man, in this case one particular man, I’m inspired; reminded of what it was like to be a young man working for the next day. One minute slicing lunch meat, and the next taking an elevator up to your office. Personal and professional transformation is of great importance to me, and as a man who believes he himself is still becoming, nothing is more affirming than when I recognize it in the wild.
Originally Published on Good Men Project