Walter Mencken 11:31 a.m., Feb. 1
- Community Blog
- A Lost time Forgotten
A weird one
I sort of lost track of time a while ago. It happened when I was simply walking around down town San Diego. I've always enjoyed people watching. It gives me the opportunity to excersise my brain by trying to figure out what the subjects are up to. Its not hard to do if you pay attention to their mannerisms, clothing, body language, the minute details that most people don't take the time to observe. Its easier to see a scruffy somewhat filthy man on the sidewalk from the inside of a car, and to assume the guy is homeless. Look a little close and you'll find his hands are dirty but the dirt isn't caked on and look, his shoes are dirty but a closer look reveals that the shoes are fairly new. Under the soil is a stubble free face. Hell, this man just got off work from one of the many construction sites down here.
So there I was walking up first street on the west side of Horton Plaza. I was on the left side of the sidewalk when I dropped my nano. I wouldn't have noticed but for the sudden tugging at my headsets firmly in my ears. As I quickly struggled to regain my composure i was sort of hunched over when I almost bumped into a kind of smelly, somewhat filthy unkempt homeless man.
I'm sure I looked as surprised as he did. I suddenly felt a pang of shame as I realized I felt and probably looked disgusted at this unfortunate soul before me. His hair was short but uncombed. He obviously hadn't shaved in quite a while as his whiskers were pretty long. Although not filthy his clothes were wrinkled and somewhat dirty. His shoes were dirty but still had alot of life left in them. As I opened my mouth to awkwardly say something, he did too as we both shut our mouths simultaneously. Thats when our eyes met and a cold rush an through my entire body. "I know this man!", I thought to myself. His dark brown within brown eyes awakened something in me, stirring me to tears.
That's when I realised his eyes had tears welling up in them as well. I reached into my pockets to give this poor man my change when looking at my empty hand I looked up to see that the man had his hand in the same position as I did, mirroring my very actions palm up with a perplexed look on his face.
As I began to speak, he seemed to know what I was thinking because he said what I said. Not repeating, but simultaneously speaking my words!
"Sorry bro', I'm broke as a joke."
That's when I realised that the person I was looking at was a reflection of myself.
I guess I really lost track of time. The homeless man in front of me was me! I had been standing in front of a window bearing my reflection the entire time.
How long had I been down here? How did I get here? How do I get out of this situation?
I got out and slowly have recovered my life. So when you see that tortured soul with his hand out, stop and think before you pass judgement. It could be you.
More like this:
- Homeless and at home in Hillcrest — June 13, 2014
- My daily Journey 2 — June 13, 2011
- Mans Best Friend — Jan. 25, 2011
- When, exactly, did I begin thinking of this place as home? — Jan. 19, 2006
- How Do You Keep Warm at Night? — Jan. 9, 1997