has been out sick and I've missed her. I
called her once and her mother answered.
She said that Becca was sleeping and that
she'd give her the message. But Becca
didn't call back. I wonder if everything
is all right.
was skating down town and almost ran into
this homeless guy who was sleeping in a
doorway. I'd seen this guy before around
the same street corner. He wears jeans and
a leather jacket and a red cap. Even if
it's 80 degrees out, that's what he always
wears. Next to him was this shopping cart
packed with all kinds of stuff. You can't
really tell what it's packed with because
everything in the cart is covered by black
plastic and the whole thing is tied up
like some huge bundle of who knows what.
The other times I've seen him, he's
sitting there talking to anybody who
passes by. I don't know if he is drunk, or
on drugs or what. Maybe he's just
confused, because he always says the same
thing. "Spare change for some food, man?
I'm really hungry and my dog hasn't eaten
in a week. Spare change, man?" I've never
seen a dog anywhere near him.
I said, today he was sleeping and taped to
the front of the cart was a piece of
cardboard with lettering on it. It
may look like I'm sleeping, but I'm
really praying for your soul. If you
help me out, God will bless
to his feet was a used paper cup with some
coins in it.
walked past him a little ways and stopped.
Even at 20 feet I could smell him. Let me
tell you, it wasn't pretty. I didn't want
to look at him or even think about what it
must be like to spend the night sleeping
on the street. Then I thought about it. It
must be cold and scary. I felt sorry for
him. I turned back toward the guy just as
two well dressed woman walked past him
carrying shopping bags from Newton's, the
upscale shop across the street. This is
what they were saying:
swear I just don't understand people
like that. If he's hungry why doesn't
he get a job!"
be silly, Beth. Those people don't want
to work. They just want to beg for
money and use it for drugs."
that true, I wondered? I mean, I've heard
lots of people say that, but it can't
possibly be true for every homeless
person. I'm not saying that I'd want to
give money to some drug addict so he could
go and get high, but what if this guy in
the red cap wasn't like that? What if he
tried to get a job and for some reason
couldn't? Or maybe he had a job and got
fired? Maybe he's sick. Or mentally ill.
Maybe his house burned down and he lost
everything. What happens to people like
reached into my pocket and dug out a
quarter and a couple of dimes. I walked
back to the guy in the doorway and dropped
the money in his cup.
you, son and God bless you," he said
whispered without ever opening his
welcome." I muttered then hurried