I go to Hate Camp in People’s Park to socialize with the street bros (so-called). Sit down next to the legendary Hate Man and buy a smoke (Hate Camp is sort of like a men’s smoking club scene). Before I’m even half way through with my cigarette this other street person shows up. A guy named Blue Beard. He sits down, wedges himself right between me and Hate Man. Dumps his bags of stuff on the ground, right by my feet.
“HATE MAN!! WATCH MY STUFF!! I’M LEAVING MY BAGS OF STUFF HERE!! WATCH IT WHILE I’M GONE!!”
“OK,” says Hate Man
“IF ANYONE MESSES WITH MY STUFF I WILL SLIT THEIR THROATS!! IF ANYONE STEALS MY STUFF WITHOUT MY PERMISSION I WILL KILL THEM!! I DON’T MESS AROUND!! I’M OLD SCHOOL!!”
This fellow, Blue Beard, cracks open a 24 ounce can of Steel Reserve. Takes a big pull. Taps me on my shoulder. “HOW YOU DOIN’ DUDE??”
“OK,” I said.
I had been sitting there minding my own business, smoking my cigarette and checking out Facebook on my cellphone. But now this fellow Blue Beard has suddenly interjected himself into the middle of my world. And is eager to relate to me. In between making loud death threats towards all the assholes of this world that he wants to kill.
“HEY!! CAN YOU TOUCH YOUR TOES??” he asks me.
“Yeah sure,” I said. I reach down from my seated position and touch my shoe.
“NO. I MEAN STANDING UP WITHOUT BENDING YOUR KNEES!!”
“No. I can’t do that,” I said.
I finished off my cigarette, stubbed it out on the ground and stood up to leave.
“Ciao,” I said.
“Ciao,” said Hate Man
But that’s what its like on the street scene. Sometimes you can’t even finish smoking one goddamn cigarette before some lunatic is sitting directly across from you and talking about slitting peoples throats and threatening to kill people and asking if you can touch your toes.