Personally, I think there is a big magnet underneath downtown that sucks eccentrics in. Yes, one big sucking machine - that attracts all faiths. All colors. All ethnic backgrounds. Genders. The works.
That is how I believe, the guy with the fishnet stockings and high heels came to live here. At first, I thought he was just an illusion. One six-foot tall man, walking down Broadway, carrying a pink purse, wearing bright red lipstick, long hair with ribbons in it, wearing a mini-pair of hot pink shorts on top of black fishnets, walking in white three inch heels.
But then I saw him on several occasions in the same get-up.
And I realized he was very real. And I must tell you right now, he stopped me in my tracks. Which is really hard to do. The first time I saw him, I literally stopped walking so I could observe him, or her, or him-her.
He was whistling as if he didn't have a care in the world. He was also very tan, and when he opened his purse to take out his pack of cigarettes to light up - he just looked so odd and strange, I simply did not know what to do.
It was clear that he was homeless. Someone who probably lived in the crevices between the buildings. Yet, he had a sense of style and wanderlust and other-worldliness, that I found fascinating.
As a writer, he spoke to me. With a story all his own. One that I was dying to make up. Was he a fashion designer who flipped out? A drug addict who snorted too much cocaine? A father who fled the nest of his eight children? Who was him-her?
Yet, as I stood there, I knew, that I would never, ever find out. His story would be in my mind only, a chapter next to the Grand Central Market, where he stood.
Without me behind him, him-her would walk on into the sunset of downtown's light, and fade into its rich tapestry of colors.
Hopefully, without his heels getting stuck in the sidewalk's cracks, and with his smile intact.