Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Neon Deion

I hit the sidewalk and, of course, had to stop walking because the dog was infatuated with a patch of grass and refused to move. Nothing new. While she explored, I took the time to look around since I have no interest at staring at her asshole as it opens up to perform its duty.

Today, while she examined the grass, I noticed a couple of dudes walking towards me. I had headphones on so I couldn’t hear exactly what he said but I could tell by his huge smile that he was happy to see me. The man had a closely shaven beard and cheap, but not bum-like, clothes. Before I could take off my headphones to see what he wanted, I inferred from his body language that it was hug-time.

It was a soft embrace. Not one that you would receive at Christmas after a long flight from the other side of the country, but still, nice. But, really, when does a hug suck? Don’t worry, I didn’t jump into this hug without any regard for my own well-being. I was conscious of my pockets the whole time and kept my eye on his friend in case it was a sneak attack. This, however, wasn’t necessary. After our soft embrace ran its course I was able to take off my headphones and see what the hell was going on.

“Hey man! How ya doin’?” he asked.

I run into this situation from time to time, as I’m sure everyone does. Say someone calls and you don’t recognize the number, you talk to them as if you know who it is until you are able to figure it out from the subtle clues of the conversation. Same deal when it happens face-to-face, except you have to mind your facial expressions as well. Head nods are a good tool, hand motions, basically anything where you can seem agreeable without actually saying anything.

“You, know. I’m good,” I responded, nodding my head.

He stood in front me, mimicking the head nods, smiling. “You don’t know who I am, do you?”

“Uhh, no.”

“Yeah you probably don’t recognize me. Deion. Desert Storm Vet. Last time I had a long beard and was all homeless. I remember you though, man. You helped me out. I gotta tell you, I know it didn’t come back to you yet, but it will!” Big smiles all around. Even his buddy got in on the action.

First of all, I was amazed that this guy recognized me. Second of all, I was amazed that he knew that the karma he felt I was afforded hadn’t come back to me yet. I mean, do I really look like my shit is all messed up?

Also, I was amazed that I had helped the guy out. When I first moved to Milwaukee, I gave money to beggars all the time. I knew a lot of the people that asked for money didn’t really need it but I figured if only one out of five needed it, then good enough for me. This was also a time where I had a lot of money saved up from working in a paper mill so it wasn’t hard for me to hand out a few dollars here and there. Eventually though, after meeting and talking to a lot of beggars, I grew jaded. I stopped giving money to people all together except for when they had a really good story or put on an interesting show. One guy told me a joke that used all the letters of the alphabet in order from A to Z. That guy deserved all the pennies in my ashtray.

After Deion and his friend left I walked down the street trying to remember where I had met him, how he remembered me, and what joke he told me to deserve whatever I gave him.

1 comment:

  1. The perfect example of karma: You give a dude money, and he gives you a hug. Oh yeah, and the promise that good things will come your way. Really? What a fuck.

    Unless, of course, he's right.