Thursday, September 07, 2006

fighting with the homeless

I’m walking park side down Tremont street on my way into work yesterday, when I see this Homeless Guy (HG) coming my direction, dirty Styrofoam cup in hand, waving it at every passerby. He’s tall and thin, missing his two front teeth, sallow skinned, and his manner, well….boisterous? I see him heading for me next. I put my head down but continue my course.

HG: Hey…hey lady. Can you gimme a dollar? I gotta git home, they won’t let me on the T. This cop he came up and BOOM pounds his arms into my chest, tells me to git out, they won’t let me on. I got 25 cents. I just need a dollar, I gotta git home and git to my clinic. You see this? [points to a cut on his hand.] I gotta git this bandaged up, I gotta git home.

Me: Where’s home?

HG: [stops short and looks confused] Uh…Cambridge.

Me: You live in Cambridge?

HG: Yeah! Gimme a dollar! Please?

Me: You could walk to Cambridge! I do it all the time.

HG: Aww man, I ain’t walking to no Cambridge! My feet hurt!

Me: [looking down] You’re wearing tennis shoes!

HG: I ain’t played no tennis!

Me: Whatever…gym shoes. Those are good shoes, I bet they’ve got great arch support.

HG: Aww man.

Me: Save your money and walk to Cambridge, dude. It’s not that far.

HG: Lady, just gimme a dollar! Please?

Me: You’re not gonna use it for the T.

HG: [stunned, as if I’ve stabbed him the heart.] I can’t believe you just said that. I’m clean, aight? I don’t smoke crack…

Me: …I didn’t say you did!

HG: No, I know. But I’m just saying like…what else am I gonna do with a dollar? I can’t git stuff with a dumb-a** dollar.

Me: I know that. I need to cross the street now.

HG: No wait,…you’re really beautiful.

Me: Oh, gag me! You just want my dollar and now you’re trying to sweet talk me into it? Get real.

HG: No, I’m being serious. You’re really nice. Please help me out?

Me: [stopped at the crosswalk, reaching for my wallet.] I don’t think I even have a dollar.

HG: Change? Anything.

Me: I can’t give you pennies; that’s insulting.

HG: If you got change, I’ll take it.

Me: I have 30 cents.

HG: Thank you. Thank you. You have yourself a nice day. And you really are beautiful. For real. I appreciate it…

Me: [crossing the street] yeah…yeah…get on the T already. Good luck. Try walking next time.

HG: [yelling across Tremont traffic and pointing at me] You for real! You for real!!!

Me: [pointing back] YOU BET I AM!!! YOU BET I AM!!!

[We both laugh. But probably for different reasons.]

The End


Thank you for assisting the homeless in what I can only call the most effective way possible.

Keep on keeping it real.

Real funny.
This made me laugh, Mary. A lot. I love that you argued with the homeless guy.
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