The Forgotten Man

I happened across a book at the grocery store that I was servicing on Friday, and the book was titled, “The Woman In The Window.” I don’t know who the author is, nor do I care. I have no idea what the book is about either. This isn’t a book review. All I know is that the title and the cover art caught my eye.

When there is a woman standing in a window, like there was on the cover of the book, people are going to notice. People always notice women in windows. “Oh she’s lonely! Oh she’s been kidnapped and held against her will! Oh she’s…..” You get what I saying.

Whenever there is a woman in a window, even in silhouette, or even just barely a glimpse of a face, she will be noticed. She will be noticed by someone. Whether a cop on a beat, a detective looking to solve a mystery, some kids out riding their bikes, or Karen across the street looking for predators, that woman in the window will be noticed.

Who doesn’t get noticed though?

Most men.

Men are the forgotten ones. They are invisible until they are needed. I’m not complaining or crying about it, it’s just the truth.

I go from job to job, 10 hours a day, and I’m almost never noticed. In fact, I tend to startle people because they didn’t see me until I am literally right next to them. I guess it’s a good thing for them that I mean no harm or ill intent, because if I did, it would be too late for them to do anything about it.

In a Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley, there are several classes of citizens. The most numerous and the one that is invisible and forgotten is the Epsilon class. These are the gardeners, the custodial staff, the power line workers, the trash collectors, the busboys, the miners, and the sewage treatment facility workers. These are the personnel that keep the world turning and keep the electricity flowing. Without them, everything grinds to a halt.

This is the great majority of men. Keeping the world turning, the oil flowing, the electricity on, the water going, and the internet on which you are reading this, and posting your latest selfie.

Without these men, you would be sitting in the dark, have no clean water to drink or bathe in, no internet to entertain yourself on, no heat to keep you warm in the winter and no air conditioning to keep you cool in the summer.

These men, these Epsilon’s of today are the unseen, unspoken, Forgotten Men. They are invisible to all until they are needed.

I’ve learned what it is like to be Unseen and Forgotten. It’s not a fun experience. It makes you question yourself, and ask yourself things like, “Do I even matter? What’s the point of life? Is my existence simply to show up, shut up, pay my taxes, and do what I’m told? Is my existence simply to be at the service of someone else? Someone else who doesn’t even know I exist, until they need me for something?”

We all want to be seen and heard. We all want to be noticed. We all want to matter. We all want to have a reason to live and exist and it can’t just be about living to serve and to pay taxes until we die. We don’t want to be Forgotten.

We want to be Remembered.

If we will be only seen when needed, how long will it take for us to decide to, say, not show up for work and keep the lights on? Or pick up your trash? Or keep the water running? How long can you last without your creature comforts and your internet before you need us? A week? A day?

An hour?

Less?

I wonder who will write the next book titled The Woman In The Window? I know I’ve seen that title before.

But who will truly write The Forgotten Man?

3 thoughts on “The Forgotten Man

  1. Amen brother… While the police and fire services are noticed, it is more as a tolerated, necessary evil. New York, and other large cities, are finding out the whole defund the police thing is not working. Refunding is occurring. They are finding out what the thin blue line really means. It’s not some code representing an “Us vs Them” mentality as asserted by some. It represents the line between good and evil. The finger in the dyke of chaos that would ensue if there were not people willing to hold that line. Ask any good cop and that’s what they will tell you. Nobody ever asks. You are spot on when you talk about the people who really keep this country going. It’s people like you, truck drivers, repairmen, etc… Jobs for the most part occupied by men. Because of course we are expendable. Athletes and celebrities contribute nothing. They are our clowns, our court jesters. Oblivious the the real world. Yet, somehow the public gives more weight to the thoughts of those who are “noticed”. Great post.

    Liked by 1 person

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