The Best Lean of My Life

We just left Saul’s Deli, house-made celery sodas in hand.

We’d been walking for hours that Saturday, meandering through North Berkeley, California’s verdant, sunny parks. I hadn’t walked this much since living in New York.

The long stretch of brick wall we were passing suddenly called out to me…

…and I took a lean.

Lean on Me

“Come lean with me,” I said to my compatriot, Christopher Piatt. “Grab some brick.”

Christopher stopped mid-stride and took a protesting stance: “No I’m quite alright standing, thank you.”

I countered: “When’s the last time you just, you know, leaned?”

Christopher kept walking.

“Come ooonn Mr. Chicago, don’t be so uptiiight. Grab a lean. Look at the angle I’m getting here,” I said, bent over almost sideways.

Then realizing this hadn’t quite convinced him, and now really wanting to get my way, I started laying it on thick. “I’m telling ya man, this is some A-quality leaning. This is…this is…this is the best lean I’ve ever had in my life.”

Bold words, I know.

Christopher stood unmoved. “I am glad you’re enjoying it but I much prefer this perspective.”

Embittered, I tried another approach: ” You! You never wanna lean with me anymore. You always have a headache, or you have to work late…I don’t know if you remember, Mister, but I seen you leanin’ before. Leanin’ in to hear a soft talker or leanin’ back to see over a tall shelf. Why won’t you lean with me? Right here, right now?”

“OK fine,” Christopher caved, “I’ll lean with you.” He collapsed onto the wall, took a deep draw from his celery soda, slowly turned to me, and said, “Ya know, this is some awfully good leanin’.”

Christopher Piatt Leans In

“See, see, I told you!” I thought, but just said nothing.

And I learned something that day: I am a natural born leaner. I love to lean.

This hypothesis was reinforced mere hours later when we discovered the Crème Brûlée Cart in San Francisco’s Castro District.


Off the Chart Leanfulness

Now, that’s some good leanin’.

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