Thursday, October 16, 2008
This is the Rhythm of the Night, My Life, Oh Yeah
I have succumbed to my natural sleep habit. I meander the city's Mission District in the middle of the night observing the way its heart beats when it sleeps to fill an internal void. Last night, I stood still, and that was all it took to take in a new perspective. Somehow when I stood still, I was perceived as one of them. They made eye contact with me. They approached me. They asked me what I needed. They asked me if I was good.
There is this strange separation here, two groups to be exact. The one group only makes eye contact with that one group. The other group only makes eye contact with that other group. Neither group acknowledges the other group but they do move around the other group if necessary to maneuver.
I have only crossed over twice. The first time was when I dressed like a complete idiot. The second time was last night when I stood still.
There really is no story telling here, just fact sharing.
Tonight, I rode my bike around in a desperate attempt to find excitement. I wonder if people notice me. I'm probably "that guy that is usually standing on corners in the middle of the night eating pizza".
My "homie on the block" that usually kicks it in front of the 16th St. Bart station is missing. I have not seen him since I left on my AIDS/Lifecycle ride. I hope he's okay. In the mean time I've made two other friends from the streets: Jean-Paul and Michael. Jean-Paul I sometimes see a couple times a day in different areas of the Mission District. He has a beard, sometimes pushes around a cart or stolen luggage. Michael usually kicks it in front of Walgreens during the day on his wheelchair asking for money and at night doing the same thing but in front of Casanova on Valencia. Michael just got a haircut. He's a Vietnamese man always wearing a hat and his left leg is partly amputated. I don't think he does drugs but I think he's a drunk. He always calls me "homeboy".
I wish I had a sound recorder to record this woman that curses in English and Spanish in 10-15 minute lengths and sometimes throws things. This happened tonight and last week and happens when she can't get into the crack house. The Hispanic dudes in the building across make fun of her or "shush" her to shut up. I am afraid to tell her to shut up because I am afraid a brick will land through my window. My neighbor down the hall threw a bucket of water at her through his window. It might have been the same neighbor that was walking drunk in the alley a few weekends ago with a footlong knife in his hand. I'm not sure because I could only see the arms and there wasn't a knife.