July 03, 2009

Hi Desert Conversations: Counter Culture

Whenever I go out alone, usually sitting at a diner counter somewhere, I'm certain to have some version of this conversation with a stranger - usually an older man, could be 40, could be 60.

Man: "So where are you coming from?"

Me: "I'm staying in Joshua Tree..."

Man: "Oh yeah? You live over there?'

Me: "Well, no...I'm staying there for a while."

Man: "So where are you from then?"

Me: "New York?"

Man: "Well, you're a long ways off from New York out here."

Me: "Yeah, that's kind of the point."

He then proceeds to tell me about his coin collection, or his house by a man-made lake, or his other career as a stand-up comic, or his son who lives in Manhattan too but he hasn't gone to visit yet.

Maybe he's from San Diego or Detroit or Westchester or Victorville, but he's awfully curious to talk to me.

Today the coin collector gave me a 1917 penny after showing me a sample of his collection.

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