Re: My Limits

1

I think I'd had been amused.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 12:51 PM
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the bless-his-heart pity for the poor bastard crowd, who don't quite see him as a human being like them

I don't see why the bless-his-heart-the-poor-guy crowd doesn't quite see him as a human being.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 1:00 PM
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3

I just give them a dollar or cigarettes.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 1:04 PM
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4

Or, maybe I don't see how the bless-his-heart-the-poor-guy crowd is distinct from the genuinely generous. But I have lost track of the trend of this ongoing series of threads.

In the moment, I'd probably be with heebie: I'd be amused. Dude, cheese on both sides of the meat? You know that's an extra-special request for anybody, right? I can't make extra-special requests, but chicken sandwich with extra-sharp, okay.

In the meantime, have you asked him whether he's tried to hook up with any homeless housing programs, or related things?

Sorry to seem irritable: I'm unfortunately irritable right now.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 1:09 PM
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5

Have you tried a nice, soothing cigarette?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 1:10 PM
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6

Or a warm, comforting dollar?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 1:23 PM
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7

Or cheese on both sides of your meat?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 1:54 PM
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8

I'm gonna guess without checking that "cheese on both sides of your meat" is listed in Urbandictionary.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 2:06 PM
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9

Eh, I'm just having one of those months in which everything goes wrong at once: first the fridge was about to go -- now replaced -- and now I discover that one of the tires on my car is half flat in the course of a mere day, so maybe needs to be patched, but of course I have to work tomorrow, and in the meantime my foot is really killing me. Doctor's appointment Tuesday morning, provided I can get myself there, car tire allowing.

Meh. Carry on. This thread is not about me.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 2:07 PM
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10

I'd have been amused too.

But I also would have just given him money, on the principle that if he wants drugs more than food it's his bidness.


Posted by: delagar | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 2:12 PM
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I'd have been amused too.

But I also would have just given him money, on the principle that if he wants drugs more than food it's his bidness.


Posted by: delagar | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 2:12 PM
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12

Once while I was leaving a Taco Bell in SF, a homeless guy asked for some money and I offered him a Clif Bar from my purse. He said, "Nah, can't you go back and buy me a taco?" I didn't give him money or go back in to order his taco. I felt guilty about it at the time, but now not so much. Presumably he's in the best position to know what he (i) needs and (ii) wants. Maybe he was having a good day begging and decided to ask for what he really wanted most. I tell my students to set high aspirations. Why should I expect less of people who spend a lot of their time begging?


Posted by: movesforbrews | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 2:15 PM
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Pretty much, I either give people begging money or don't. Giving food rather than money seems either ineffective, if the idea is to keep the recipient from getting alcohol or drugs, or wasteful -- someone offers you food when you don't know where your next meal is coming from, you take it, but that doesn't mean it's at all what you need most. Have you thought about buying him some clean socks? A toothbrush? Not that I know he needs either, but not that you know he doesn't.

But I can't see even feeling bad for a moment about being irritated by the fussy sandwich request. If you're treating this guy like an equal human being, who you're doing a favor for because he seems to need it, being irritated by fussiness is a perfectly ordinary, acceptable way to relate to equals.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 2:26 PM
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14

(Also, what are the odds he was messing with you? Cheese on both sides of the meat sounds more like a random specification, to see how far you'd go, rather than an actual preference. I may be underestimating how fussy genuinely fussy people are, but who knows.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 2:32 PM
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15

Have you thought about buying him some clean socks? A toothbrush?
I bet they're never given disposable flossers.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 2:34 PM
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16

Get the guy some condoms and some Zyrtec, ogged. Don't be stingy.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 3:26 PM
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17

I get him what he asks for, but he hasn't asked for those yet.

what are the odds he was messing with you?

Zilch. He's just a tiny bit "off;" I don't know precisely what, but clearly some mental illness, hence the scale of goodness: if he weren't mentally ill, you'd be right, and it'd be perfectly normal to be a bit annoyed, but he is, so there's a tension between treating him like I'd treat anyone else, and making allowances.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 3:31 PM
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You know him and I don't, but some degree of mental illness does not seem to me to rule out the possibility that he's messing with you.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 3:38 PM
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19

If you agreed that he should come into the store, don't let him change your mind by throwing a tantrum.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 3:42 PM
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20

I bet having an iPad would really hurt as far as begging goes, but it's got to be what they really need.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 4:09 PM
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21

Giant broadswords are always empowering.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 4:32 PM
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22

Not all hobos are highlanders.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 4:35 PM
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23

A storm blasted through and now the air is so cool and crisp it feels like getting a blow job from fall.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 4:41 PM
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24

What would be the most helpful app for homeless people?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 4:52 PM
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25

Maybe you could get him a puppy.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 5:15 PM
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26

24: I was just figuring games to pass the time, plus email. That may be projection on my part.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 5:17 PM
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24: http://www.zillow.com/mobile/


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 5:25 PM
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28

25: better a guinea pig.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 5:45 PM
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29

"Mister," the homeless guy says, "a guinea pig like this you don't eat all at once."


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 5:52 PM
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30

Is Zillow mobile the version for pricing trailer parks?


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 6:15 PM
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31

I bet they're never given disposable flossers.

I bet some of them have never even seen a violin. And yet LB doesn't seem even to have considered giving them a violin.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 6:37 PM
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some degree of mental illness does not seem to me to rule out the possibility that he's messing with you

It would be so great if you we could manufacture one hundred comments arguing about this. I'm not sure how to characterize his mental illness, because the first word that comes to mind is "slow," but he's quite sharp in some ways, so that's not it. Anyway, he seems pretty well kept up, considering. Clothes are clean, he seems clean, has a rolling suitcase for his stuff. Maybe you're right. Maybe he's not even homeless.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 6:59 PM
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33

"This crazy Mexican was like do you want a sandwich and I was like uh yeah why not free sandwich. I even asked for cheese on both sides of the meat because who knows what this fool will do. I think maybe he thinks I'm homeless or something."


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 7:03 PM
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34

Because, hey, free dummy.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 7:23 PM
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35

"....has a rolling suitcase for his stuff."

All indications point to an itinerant root-canal specialist waiting for his next call, my dentist's office has one of those guys come in when needed.


Posted by: biohazard | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 7:42 PM
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36

It's really weird to watch threads like this when there are two homeless people I'm bankrolling to a certain extent, though in neither to a case where I think they count as legally not homeless. There are really not good how-to guides to this, or not that I've found, though I might have ignored them even if there were.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 7:51 PM
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37

Just don't let them get a cheese fetish.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 7:57 PM
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38

two homeless people I'm bankrolling to a certain extent

Two homeless high-stakes blackjack players -- both of whom dropped out of MIT after some kind of mishap with their research -- counting cards and winning big is a good enough script treatment. Call it "The System." Halford?


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 8:05 PM
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39

36: the two teen boys from foster care? Or someone else?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 8:10 PM
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40

35: Those guys are great. Much faster at root canals than a regular dentist.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 8:41 PM
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41

Of course, here they usually have an office you get sent to and they don't travel.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 8:43 PM
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42

35: ogged should ask him for advice on flossing next time.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 9:02 PM
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43

I'm not sure how to characterize his mental illness, because the first word that comes to mind is "slow," but he's quite sharp in some ways, so that's not it.

I'd guess he's on antipsychotics. That slowness is a pretty common side effect.

Anyway, he seems pretty well kept up, considering. Clothes are clean, he seems clean, has a rolling suitcase for his stuff. Maybe you're right. Maybe he's not even homeless.

He might be living in an assisted living type facility where they can come and go but there's staff that make sure they take their meds and stuff. Some of the schizophrenics like to just wander around during the day. We've got Robert who likes to walk around fast in his camo shorts yelling at passing cars, David who loves to go down the road kicking a plastic bottle in front of him the entire time, etc.

I just give them a dollar or cigarettes.

I always carry cigs in my car. They're good for the schizophrenics, mellows them out.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 11:33 PM
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44

He might be living in an assisted living type facility where they can come and go but there's staff that make sure they take their meds and stuff.

I live next to one of those. The residents seem generally harmless, but it can be disconcerting to walk by sometimes.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 06- 8-14 11:38 PM
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45

I grew up next to two large mental hospitals. One for the mentally handicapped, and one for the mentally ill. It's amazing how blasé you can get about quite unusual behaviour. I think that has worn off now, and I can get quite disconcerted by obviously mentally ill people, but when I was a kid/teenager, we all just accepted 'patients' [as they were universally known] as a fact of life. They were always around, in the shops, and the streets.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 06- 9-14 12:09 AM
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46

45: and now you work at Oxford.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 06- 9-14 2:22 AM
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47

re: 46

Aye, quite.

Those two institutions used to rejoice in the names:

Stirling District Lunatic Asylum

and

Scottish National Institution for the Education of Imbecile Children

Although they've since changed their names to something less Victorian.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 06- 9-14 3:06 AM
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36: One of them and a relative of one of the girls, who basically gets to vent to me but doesn't typically get money from me, so I really didn't describe it well enough.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 06- 9-14 3:40 AM
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49

antipsychotics

Yeah, this is my other guess. He has the flat affect I associate with those.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 06- 9-14 4:05 AM
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50

I was just kind of rude to Rowan about how he talks to me when asking for/demanding money. I blame/thank ogged, I guess.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 06- 9-14 6:56 PM
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51

50: Did you refuse to fold the Benjamins into unique zoo animal oragami?


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 06- 9-14 7:08 PM
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52

51: I am such a bitch that I don't return texts while in a meeting with the principal. It's amazing they let me be a mom, really.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 06- 9-14 7:41 PM
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