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People encounters of the Chicago kind?

What is it about people riding the train and asking for money? This morning, the person next to me asked if I had 25c on my trip into town, then on my trip back there was this other lady loudly asking the entire car if anyone could spare her 60c. I imagine it's for the transfer thingy, but hey, you should have the $$ you need for your trip beforehand, eh?

Then there was that other time a few days ago when I hiked it over to a nearby library (0.6 or 0.8 miles away, depending whether I looked it up on mapquest or yahoo) - got asked for some spare change by two people: one just around the library area who kinda invaded my space, the other on my way back from the library: she was just sitting in a doorway and asking for money.

It upsets me to know that there are people who live off of the streets. I mean, I *know* this situation exists - but when confronted with it "live" [whether here or back home] it's a totally different bundle of emotions, eh? :(

But I'm not limiting this to money-related people encounters.

So today, around 1215n, there I was, walking back to the apartment from the train station. At an intersection, this guy in a pickup truck stops behind a car, and starts honking his horn, opens his door, leans out and shouts something. I'm assuming he's got some problem with the car in front of him or something, shut out the noise, push the pickup truck out of my mind, and wait for the lights to change so i can cross the street.

I cross the street, and then *jump!* cos that idiot is sliding up next to me as if he's going to park, still honking his horn loudly, peering thru the windscreen aggressively. I'm like dude I am so ignoring you man, and keep walking.

I spy that damned pickup moving along the street slowly. I pass a restaurant that happens to have a firetruck and police van in front [that other day it was an ambulance! Is eating there a hazard?]. I relax cos I spy a couple o' uniforms at the entrance. The pickup truck driver slows down and yells out to the uniformed guys "Hey, can you tell me where xyz street is?" OMG the moron was needing directions??!! And I actually knew the answer too! But dude, you certainly did NOT come across as someone needing directions! You seemed like you were road-rage ready!! No way I would have given you the time of day, the way you were honking the horn so aggressively!



So, I mentioned I took the train into town: to a downtown library, actually, where a meditative yoga class is held. I'd been introduced to it a long long time ago (2002?) back in KL, but couldn't do much with it no thanx to the crazy work schedule. But now that I have lots of free time, and I feel the need to kinda get back into some internal/soul balancing / cleansing / nourishing stuff, AND there's a "branch" in Chicagoland, everything is set for me to get back on track.

Today's session was not outstanding, but that's okay, I'll be back.

But right now? I might grab myself some 40 winks.



  1. During our second trip to S.F., Katie and I were bugged for change by a homeless guy. Actually, he was asking for a whole dollar, not change. But, when we said no, he started following us for a block and constantly asking. I had to threaten him with calling the police to get him to leave us the hell alone.

  2. My favorite request for money EVER was in S.F., when a guy asked us for $4.55 so he could buy an extra value meal because he had to take his anti-psychotic drugs with food.


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