Winter Reflection | Mark Lindsay

Outside looking in. Fourth Street is dead on the Monday of a three-day weekend. There is a sterile scent of nothingness in the air. I escaped from the studio to see the world and the world stayed home. I'm just slightly out-of-sync on the tail end of a twilight-zone holiday.

President's Day weekend is among the strangest long weekends. Not exactly the birthday of any one president, it is little more than an excuse for ski weekend. No one seems to even think of Washington or Lincoln or anyone other president. On the way to San Rafael I did see one of those tea-party guys hang a pathetic little "Impeach" sign on a chain-link fence along Highway 101. I give him credit. At least he was thinking about presidents on President's Day. But his creepy little sign just added to the weirdness of the abandoned day.

Outside looking in. There's nothing left to do but smoosh my face against empty shop windows. Every light in every window is off. Dark. I come upon a closed, glass door. Inside is a stairwell littered with old magazines and phone books. I ask myself why they're there. Then I imagine one of those old black & white TV shows from my youth where some guy (me) is about to realize that there was a nuclear war and he's the sole survivor. I wonder how old the magazines are.

Right around noon a couple shops open. The world transforms from monochrome to color. I awaken from my B-grade fantasy and realize that I haven't given one thought to a single president, dead or alive. The day remains a mystery as do the old magazines behind the glass door. Outside looking in.