I like to give nicknames to the various & sundry individuals that I have commuted with over the years. (See any blog in the MT140 4.0 series) I base them on their appearance and I base them on their actions. I have often wondered what nickname I would give myself if I didn’t know me. After careful consideration and much deliberation, I am pretty sure I would call myself “The Mornin’ Man”.
From a very simple standpoint it comes from the fact that I say Mornin’ to every person I pass or passes me on the train platform. I never say Good Morning because I don’t know if it’s good for them or not and frankly I don’t care. I guess I dropped the G in morning (which bugs my wonderful wife to no end) out of laziness but Mornin’ just seems more like me. I know it annoys some people on the platform but that’s okay with me because there is actually a deeper meaning to why I do what I do.
I have been commuting out of the same train station for the past 15 years. I have seen a lot of people come and a lot of people go. In my first few years commuting I didn’t care about anything other than getting a good seat on a crappy train. Then 9/11 happened and everything changed. Faces that I had seen but not seen were gone for good. People I knew but didn’t know were simply no longer there. About a month after 9/11 a woman I had a vague recollection of seeing before came up to me to say that she was glad to see me since she hadn’t seen me since that fateful day. I don’t remember if I ever saw her again but it was then that I decided to start acknowledging everyone on the platform. I started giving everyone their own name. They all unknowingly became a part of my extended commuting family.
So if you happen to be on the train platform and the guy with the trenchcoat, blackberry & sunglasses says “Mornin” to you, it’s just me and despite my outward demeanor, I’m actually glad to see you.