Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Homeless Encounters.

Got on the bus today and was looking well. Headphones on. Backpack full of books on Inquisitional Spain guarding the seat next to me. Ready for the future but still biting my lip. A woman gets on. Old faded Levis cut to shorts that covered just over her butt and frayed like mad. Skinny like an abused puppy. Wild eyes that showed through her dirty, blonde tangled mass of hair that let down in strings all over her face. Black tank top with a Playboy emblem of the pink naked sprawling woman right in the middle. No bra. Tattoo of two hearts with names in each linked together by a chain on her right arm below the shoulder. Typically bad teeth. Track marks.
       So I took my head phones off. I stopped reading my book. I sat and observed her for a bit, kind of like when you are a kid and watch the double dutch jump ropes swinging and crossing in front of you as you try and time the perfect moment to jump in. It was now.
       "Hi." I said plainly.  "Hey what it is brother?" she answered, nodding her head and pulling out her headphones.
       " Where you headed?"
       " Well all different places. I gotta go to f**kin Wal-Mart and then my f**kin boyfriend is being an idiot so I gotta go see him." she said. She looked about thirty five. Maybe? Who knows. She had scratches all over her legs but she was clean shaven. This was very interesting to me.
       " Ah. Boyfriends. Where do you live?"
       " Well mostly with my boyfriend but I dont really live anywhere really. Out. Around. You know." she explained to me quickly without any reserve.
       " Hey Im homeless too. Well I have this van. I live all over."
       " No F**KING WAY DOOD!" she yelled. People on the bus began to scoot and shift uncomfortably.
       " Yeah! For real. I live all over. Slept up on a billboard. Under an overpass. Hang out at the library and schools and stuff. I dont mind it at all." I explained to her that I had a job and went to school and church and that I was homeless just for a bunch of reasons and she got a real kick out of it all. She told me she was Mormon once and "......was like 'F**k that sh*t'...." She had been doing drugs for quite sometime you could tell, anyone could, but she, for better or worse, seemed high functioning. She texted someone. I asked her if she had a job and she said no. I asked if her boyfriend payed for that phone. She said no, and that "Uncle Sam pays for this sh*t". She said she's been on welfare and needs it to get off that stuff. I agree by nodding. Its a nice phone. I ask her if she is hungry, if she needs any food or anything? She makes a joke about me asking her out and says she is fine. Her phone rings. She answers.
      " Im sittin here listening to f**kin' Let The Bodies Hit The Floor and you call and Im like 'You are so f**kin' Disturbed! I love Disturbed man!"
        She yells over the sound of the bus and the traffic and the whispering conversations in the front seats and some heads turn, some toward her and some away. I put my headphones back on because I may as well have disappeared to her. She continues speaking to the person. Then minutes into it she pulls the cord that dings the bell that lets the driver know that a stop has been requested. The bus slows and stops. She hits me on the arm and I take my phones off and smile.
      "Later brother! Good luck out there!" she yells
      " Hey you too. Oh by the way, its Drowning Pool." I say.
      "Whats that?" she asks as she steps off the bus.
      "Its Drowning Pool not Disturbed!" I yell back as the doors close. She has no idea what Im talking about. I look around. Everyone has opted to put their heads down except for the guy across from me with the shirt that has the big black lettered word "Fukinnehh!" in front of the Canadian flag on it. He smiles and I pick my book up again and continue reading.

"Let the bodies hit the floor. Let the bodies hit the floor. Let the bodies hit the floor."

1 comment:

  1. I love the way you described that whole incident. I have been in her shoes, so it hits home specifically. I can see that you are not judgemental in your interactions and I commend you for that. Keep up the awesome work.... I love what you are doing and I think everyone should experience a peice of this side of life at least once. It changes a person!