I was walking in Queen Anne the other day with Kidd Valley in my hand on my way to a friend's place. Coming to a bus stop a guy walked onto the sidewalk and looked at me. He said hello with a look that indicated he wanted something.
Panhandling is pretty common in Seattle. Nine times out of ten when a stranger approaches you you can be sure that they'll want some money. If I'm carrying spare change I'll usually give it to them, but as most people nowadays I rarely have cash on hand.
I assumed this guy wanted some fries maybe, or just a dollar or something, but with a bright smile he asked if I wanted to buy some beer. At his feet were two cases, one Coors the other Coors Light.
I kept walking as I declined. His face went from joyful to angry. He asked why and I told him I don't drink Coors. In fact if given the circumstance I would rather stay sober than have to consume that nasty beverage that barely passes for beer. That's saying a lot.
He apologized for whatever reason, but his voice conveyed a bit of anger I wasn't expecting. I kept walking, told him not to apologize, and wished him a good night.
I have no idea what kind of circumstances this man was living with, but obviously his existence wasn't too pleasant if he was selling terrible beverages at a bus stop in Seattle. Thankfully this incident didn't end up like the one experience I had with the self proclaimed 'baddest nigga in Seatown', but still I felt some pity for the guy. Many lives have been ruined by our institutions' inability to keep their financial houses in order and sadly with the skyrocketing unemployment it seems that more events like this will happen.
On a completely different note I got this text last night shortly before bedtime:
"Honest to God quote of the day: You are either homosexual or gay. There are no other options."
I know some people with razor sharp intellects.
"I know that a man who shows me his wealth is like the beggar who shows me his poverty; they are both looking for alms from me, the rich man for the alms of my envy, the poor man for the alms of my guilt." - Ben Hecht