I sat in a pair of seats that face each other next to a middle-aged black man with a Raiders hat on. At first I thought it would be difficult to start a conversation with him because he was glued to his flip phone and intensely texting someone. However, as with Mrs Advocate, things got personal pretty fast.
I asked him if he took the train often and he said that he was a truck driver from South Carolina and just delivered a truck to Worcester (pronounced WOO-ster in his thick southern accent).
He was en route to Boston to visit a friend, a friend that he told me was actually a ”special lady friend”. He was almost giddy talking about spending the night with his Boston sugar mama. He was flying out the next morning so no commitments, bonus. Fed up with texting on a flip phone (what is this 2006?), he finally called her because he could barely contain his excitment. I only heard one side of the conversation but it went something like this :
Mr. Raiders Hat – “Oh yeah you know what I want” (I’m not joking either)
Ms. Sugar Mama – (I imagine she said something in a sassy attitude like “Oh yeah and what’s that?”)
Mr. Raiders Hat – “I’ll just have to show you when I see you” (giggles and bounces/squirms in his train seat)
He then continued texting her back and forth. She would be at South Station waiting to take him to her bachelorette pad in Dorchester for the night. Then he creepily told me about how whenever he visits Boston he’ll just go sit in South Station for a few hours and watch all the pretty college girls walk by. Yikes.
In an attempt to steer the conversation toward a less creepy (and less sexually charged) topic, I asked him about his work. I asked him what his favorite and least favorite places he visited were. He said anywhere in California is the best and that anywhere in New Jersey is the worst. He said CA had beautiful country to drive through plus nice people and nice weather. He’s had exactly the opposite experience in NJ where everything is either a highway, industrial park, or suburb and the people are unfriendly. Despite all of his traveling he rarely gets the time to spend more than one day in a place which is too bad.
He noticed a guy standing on the train next to us who had a Purple Heart Medal pinned to his hat (medal for soldiers injured in combat).
This was an indication to me that he spent time in the military. After a few more questions he told me he proudly spent 22 years with the Air Force. Again I asked him about the best/worst places he’d been with the Air Force over those 22 years. The answer was Myrtle Beach, SC for the best and South Korea was the worst (I can see the logic there)
The conversation inevitably went back to women, particularly women in Boston and how great they are. He said that I would be a fool if I didn’t find myself a girlfriend in this city of “1 million single college girls”. Perhaps an overestimation but either way I’m no fool. As I got up to get off the train at my stop he fist pounded me and said, “Go get it Tiger, nice talkin’ to ya.” I had considered bypassing my stop to witness him meeting his Sugar Mama at South Station (#priceless) but instead I got up and I wished him good luck and went on my way.