I don’t know when it happened, but it has. I’m 84-years-old, weigh more than 190 pounds, have a belly and love handles, yet I’m invisible. I only became aware of this condition last week.

When I got into my car after a visit to the gym, the door of the car next to me was ajar, and the guy in it, wearing white earbuds, was on the phone. I waited on him to finish the call or to give me a go ahead sign before trying to back out. What a dummy, I was.

After a minute or two — still chatting on the phone wearing white earbuds — the guy got out of his car, banging his door against the passenger side of my car. There was no recognition that anything had happened. He didn’t look up, kept talking on his phone, wearing white earbuds, and headed to the machine to buy a parking permit.

I was annoyed and got out of my car to look at the passenger side to see if there was any damage. There didn’t appear to be. I yelled at the guy, but he was still on his phone, wearing white earbuds.

Twenty-four hours later he was at the gym, on his phone talking, wearing white earbuds. Am I the only one who thinks people who are on their phones all the time have nothing to say?

After another gym visit last week, I went to the supermarket, stuffing four or five items in a cloth shopping bag. A woman, holding several items in her arms, started to get in line behind me, but I told her to go ahead. She thanked me.

When one of the cashiers became free, I started to head for her counter, but a woman who had been standing at the deli counter, pivoted and put her shopping bag on the counter. She did not look up, look over to where I was standing. I was invisible.

Damn it! I’m here. I exist.

I’m going to buy a whistle, a loud one, and wear it around my neck. The next bastard who ignores me is going to get an earful of noise — both from the whistle and from my lips. I’m still working on what I’m going to say after I blow my whistle. It could be:

“Hey, moron! Wake up!”


“Hello! See me? I exist. Wait your turn.”

“Hey, Bro, maybe if you got off your phone for just an itsy-bitsy millisecond, you might realize you’re being a jerk. Then again, maybe you wouldn’t.”

Whichever it is, it would be wise, I think, for me to have on a pair of comfortable running shoes.

(Posted March 14, 2022)



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Larry McCoy

Retired newsman, author of “Grandma Told Me to Never Believe Anything Grandpa Says” published by Covenant Books. It’s his third book. He’s yet to be sued.