No matter where one goes in the world homeless human beings can be found. For whatever reason these people have no place to be. No shelter, no protection from the weather.
There have a been a few threads lately pertaining to homeless folk. Some nice things have been said, some not so nice things have been said.
A lot of folks proffer that a lot or even most of the homeless chose to live that way. I have no idea what the actual percentage is myself, and don't really care.
I've been there myself. I've spent time in hobo camps. I've hung out under bridges and in tunnels. And while you will see all sorts of people, the mentally ill, the drug controlled, the criminal, the lazy, the unfortunate, the drunk, the angry, the sad, the rebellious, the abandoned. You'll see folks just trying to figure out who they are, folks trying to figure out where they are. You'll see people who don't care about either one.
Now I'm not talking about the folks like me who simply hit an awful time in their life through some form of misfortune. I'm talking about the folks for whom homelessness is a lifestyle. For whom homelessness is perpetual.
You'll see sick people, tired people, crippled, injured, young old, dying, retarded, crazy. There are as many calamities as there are individuals. Every story is in some way or another unique.
But they all live in filth. They all live with a rat chewing their belly from the inside out. For some the gnawing rodent is named hunger. From one morsel of food to the next the gnawing teeth never stop. For others it's name is thirst, either for water or for booze. Their life given only to the pursuit of the next drink.
The belly rat for others is hate. A hate that may or may not have a tangible source. Hatred of family, community, government. Hatred even of themselves.
For others still the rat may be mental illness.
But that rat, lives in every one of them. Ever been bitten by a rat? They don't just bite and let go like a dog. They don't bit and hang on like a pit bull. They chew. They chew like electricity. They chew. They do all they can in inflict the most possible damage.
Ever been able to think of anything else while a rat chewed on you? Distracting as hell ain't it? When a rat has it's teeth in you nothing else in the world exists.
Just like the bite from a real rat, the belly rat of the homeless is distracting. It steals all their attention, their focus. For whatever reason, for what ever addiction, affliction or malady these people have nothing but that gnawing in their gut. The rest of the world is at best an obscure haze that comes and goes without consequence.
Their lives are centered focused around and encompassed by that one element. It leaves no room for vision, for goals, for self worth, for improvement. It's all consuming. Just like drug addiction, alcoholism, insanity. In fact many homeless people are homeless because of those things.
Even poverty. Their literally isn't enough to go around. And when that is the case someone has to go without.
In homeless people there is plenty to see, their history, their life story, where they have been, the things they have experienced and endured. The meager possessions they may have scrounged.
You would be amazed at some of the things you'll see in the world of the homeless. We've all heard stories of homeless folk found dead either starved or frozen to death but in their clothes or bags their will be thousands of dollars in cash even millions.
Homeless people who are phenomenal artists, they have talents like singing or dancing or even telling stories.
Some will own things that are extremely valuable. Like I said you'd be amazed at what you could see in them or with them.
But I'll tell you, you won't see many smiles. Happiness is a very rare thing with the homeless regardless of why they are homeless.
Everyone deserves some happiness in their life. Now some will hear that and say "Hang on a minute Broke Ole Boy. Those evil people who kill, rape, or harm children don't deserve any happiness." I guess they'd be entitled to that opinion and may even be right.
But those aren't the people I'm talking about. I'm talking about the guy who makes you curl your lip and frown with his matted hair and bad smell. I'm talking about the woman who makes you shake your head in disgust when you see her eat from a dumpster. or the ten year old you click your tongue at when you see him sleeping under a bush at the park.
I'm talking about the family you are shocked to discover living in back of a stripped station wagon down by the abandoned factories.
I'm talking about the people that most folks are quick to ignore, quick to dismiss as lazy, quick to discredit because they "chose to live that way" or are "content with that life".
I'm talking about people who have very little if any happiness in their life.
Are you going to help them by buying them a meal? Are you going to help them better themselves by giving them a blanket? Are you going to rescue them with those few coins in your pocket?
Well no. You aren't. But you can bring just a little slice of happiness into their otherwise joyless world.
Give them just 90 seconds of your time. The next time you decide that guy in the dumpster is there because he's lazy. The next time you assume the woman on the off ramp wants drug money. The next time you figure the guy with the sign just wants you to make the next payment on his Mercedes.
Stop, talk to them for just 90 seconds. Offer them a kind word and a smile. No one ever smiles at the homeless. Just a smile.
Talk to them, let them tell you a story, let them tell you their name, for some of them it's all they have left. Give them ninety seconds of your time before you write them off. In that ninety seconds, you are likely to learn something not just about them but maybe about yourself. I know I did.
And in that ninety seconds, actually pay attention to them, and you will be able to see if they are truly homeless, truly living that lifestyle or if they are just trying to make an easy buck off the unsuspecting.
Certain things will be apparent if you pay attention. If they stink to high hell I mean really stink, that lived in stink you know damn well they aren't driving away in anything let alone a high end car. Look at their hands, they may or may not be dirty, but are they scarred? Are they quick and cautious?
Make eye contact, are their eyes impatient? Or are they distant? Or maybe surprised?
Even if you give them nothing more than that ninety seconds. You have given them something most of the world won't. If you simply take a little time to talk to them like human beings. Give them a smile, and wish them well. You will have given them just a little happiness, a little pleasantness int heir day.
Now I'm not stupid, nor am I gullible. So yeah I know not all of them will appreciate it. Some will be downright nasty. But even with them, since when is being nice a bad thing?
90 Seconds, a minute and a half. Don't give them money, don't buy them food, don't hand them a blanket. Give them a smile. Give them a moment to feel like part of the world instead of an embarrassing piece of garbage.
Whether it truly does them any good or not doesn't matter. Good will spreads. Good will is like malice, given a little room it will grow. Malice is everywhere. it has all the room it needs to grow. Good will though, is obviously in short supply.
Not just the homeless either now that I think about it. Any of your fellow man could use 90 seconds of good will.
No this isn't some homeless advocacy ploy, or anything like that. It's just Broke Winger running off at the lip.
P.G.R. Member ID: 88374
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Our Soldiers are what make us strong. Without them there would be no USA.