Living in the SF Bay Area, I see a lot of interesting people – pretty much everybody in San Francisco has something interesting about them. I could probably make a living writing blog entries with all the great content people in this geographic region provide for me.
As is my usual custom while walking to work, I stopped for a cup of coffee and a muffin near the office. In the few minutes that I was in the ING Direct Cafe, a homeless man that I see frequently around the city showed up on the sidewalk. Not a big deal – he’s always been very friendly and has frequently commented on how well I dress (especially when I’m wearing a tie, which I’m not today). But today, he was a little different.
Now, it isn’t unusual to see homeless people acting a little, how can I be delicate… strange (?) in this city, so it doesn’t shock me when I see odd-ball behavior; however, I have never seen this particular homeless man talk to himself or yell at (seemingly) nothing. Not so today. As I was walking up the sidewalk towards him – his back toward me – I heard him start to yell. What was this about, I wondered? As I came closer, I could see that he wasn’t yelling completely randomly. He was standing only inches away from a parking meter and was yelling at it furiously, as if it were a human being.
“Are you listening to me?? I was in the United States Submarines, do you hear me? Answer me!!”
Clearly to his dismay, the parking meter did not answer and the homeless man became even more enraged by this defiance. He saluted (I’m not making this up) the parking meter. The parking meter did not return his salute.
“Is that all you have? I was a Submarine! We played a huge role in the United State Defense Attorneys!”
The parking meter was unimpressed. At this, the homeless man huffed and puffed, storming around in circles on the sidewalk, devastated that this parking meter was refusing to recognize the significant contribution that he had made to the US Defense Attorneys as a Submarine. The last thing I saw (and heard) as I turned the corner to head to my building was the man now yelling at a wall. I guess he’d heard that the walls have ears.