Sunday, February 10, 2008

My bad!

So it started about eighteen or so years ago when I was in college down in L.A. I lived just off of the USC campus which if you don't know, is a complete shit hole. (Frequently) At least ten times a day homeless people would ask me for money. First of all I was a student, and money was something I had little of. Second, I knew that they would probably go and use the money for anything but food. So, I got in the habit of asking them if I could buy them something to eat rather than hand out cash. Many of them declined the offer (I was right about there intentions). Surprisingly, some of them would happily take me up on my offer. In the 80’s, two to three bucks could go along away at a road side taco stand. As the years have gone buy, I have made attempts to continue this practice. Over the last year or so, a homeless woman regularly sits outside of the grocery store where I shop. I have made it a habit to buy a sandwich, fruit, etc . . . when I would see her. A co-worker of mine liked the idea so much that he started feeding her as well. Then, a couple of weeks ago I was in line at a different store in the area. Well, this woman was in front of me in line with a fifth of cheap rock gut gin. Just prior to getting to the checker, she noticed me behind her. She was obviously mortified. She made her purchase and scurried off. Now I have to be honest. I have been pretty pissed about this for the last week or so. Not like punching the wall kicking the dog pissed, but rather just annoyed at the circumstances. But then on Superbowl Sunday I had a little epiphany about this whole thing. I was in my big warm house, watching the game on my big screen TV, gorging myself on a feast that would make a roman emperor jealous. Remarkably, the whole time I was lounging in paradise, happy as a clam, nursing my sore jaw, I was tying on an award winning drunk. I’m happy and I get drunk. I really can’t imagine being in the shoes of someone who is homeless, addicted, and/or down on their luck. So now, I feel like a complete shmuck for getting pissed about this. Because I’m sure that if it was me out there, I want whatever cheap high I could get, to numb me up a little. She no longer hangs out in front of my store. That makes me feel even worse.

2 Beer Farts:

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater said...

Awwwwwww. That was a cute story, and I couldn't agree more. Why do we say, "Well, they're just going to buy booze with the money we give them." Of course they are, and why should we give a shit?

I'll tell you what, one time some buddies and I gave about a half a case of beer to a homeless guy, and his face lit up like it probably hadn't since Christmas morning when he was seven-years-old. So, I ask you: What the hell is wrong with THAT?

Jake Titus said...

thanks for the compliment and the addition. I hope she returns.