Puddles – 26 May 2014

Posted: May 26, 2014 in Dialog, Prose
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,




26 May 2014

Scattered showers, the sidewalk was littered with puddles, I didn’t know whether or not to expect Joy or Chuck.

“Hi Sweetie,” chirped Joy. “How was your weekend?”

“It was quiet, we went to the lake. I put the dock in. Apart from that it was reading and relaxing.”

“Sounds good. My weekend was quiet as well.”

I asked, “Did Jake get his wheelchair fixed?”

“Yeah, the guy was great. Fixed it right on the street. He was awesome.”

I said, “I guess you heard that Chuck had problems getting his chair fixed.”

“Yeah, the guy accused him of breaking it. He said that in front of Chuck’s lady friend.”

I said, “I can’t figure out why it is that Chuck has so many problems, yet Jake doesn’t”

“I don’t know, a lot of people ask me about Chuck. Someone heard that he had a big house in the suburbs, but I’ve seen his place. He’s in a retirement home with assisted living. It’s in a rough section of town. If Chuck has any money it’s because he’s too stingy to spend any. When I first met him, he was using a cane. A few years later it was a walker. I don’t know how long he’s had the wheelchair.

“He was here when I arrived at six. He’d only made fifty cents, then Turtle set up down the block. I could hear him shouting from here, ‘Has anybody got any spare change?’  Chuck was pissed off, he and Turtle had words then Chuck left. I’ve made hardly anything either but, like I told Chuck, Monday’s are always bad. I don’t know if I’ll even make my bus fare coming here and back.

I said, “Chuck told me that he’s putting money away for Goldie, so that she’s taken care of after he dies.”

“He should be able to get her care paid for, since she’s a service dog. Maybe he just doesn’t want to apply. It’s like Wolf and Shaggy. He should retire that dog, she can barely walk. After Weasel died, Bruce retired Bear. I remember him saying to her. ‘You’ll never have to work again, old boy. Then they had her checked out by the vet, who suggested she be put down.

“Wolf’s afraid that if he doesn’t have Shaggy, he won’t make any money, but he’s got regulars. They’d take care of him. I guess he also want’s the company. Shaggy is his best friend.”

A man stopped and handed Joy an apple. “Thank you, sir,” she said.

“Why is it people think I’m hungry? I don’t eat apples, and most of my friends don’t have teeth.” She asked me, “Do you want an apple?”

“Sure,” I said. “I should be eating more fresh fruit.

“I saw Blaine on Friday. I don’t think I’ve met him before, but you described him as looking like Shakes. This guy did.”

“Yeah,” said, Joy, ” he can be scary.”


  1. The last interaction between Joy and the man who handed her the apple raises so many good questions about how to frame the way think about standing alongside the poor. Do we really see? Thanks for being an eye-opener. Blessings my brother!


  2. revgerry says:

    Your posts tear at my heart. Thanks for helping us see life through the eyes and joys and challenges of your friends .


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