I took a train out to the suburbs on Friday night to meet a few of my aunts and uncles - Bill, Paula, Pat and Sally - and some of their friends for dinner. It was nice. I ran into my old boss (from the catering company) at the restaurant, and felt really cool for knowing someone outside my city. Small world.
But then I got back to Union Station at about 10:00 pm, and I was tired, seriously period cramping, and ready to go home to bed.
After going to the bathroom, where a stout Latin woman spent her time on the toilet talking on her Douchetooth (my phrase for a Bluetooth earpiece), I walked out right in front of a man with luggage who appeared to be babbling to himself. I soon realized he was asking for money.
I kept my head down, shook it, walked away. I walked right by an ATM 15 feet away, and realized I needed cash to get home by cab. There was no way I was going to hang out for a bus with all this riff raff hanging around.
After I pulled out my cash and started to walk away, the same guy was standing in my way asking for help. I walked away, saying no, and headed toward the station's McDonald's. Ha! I had serious dry mouth for a Diet Coke, and I hoped the caffeine would ease my debilitating cramps. I would have bought some Midol, but the convenience store was closed.
SO...after shelling out a buck and change for a Diet Coke, I walked out and headed for the door. This homeless guy had been watching me from across the walkway, and as I walked out of McD's (with my drink, mind you, and not a huge bag of cheeseburgers, fries, crisp hundred dollar bills and shiny spats on my shoes), this asshole has the fucking nerve to say:
"Fat bitch. Fat fucking bitch. Fat ass slob."
I raised my middle finger in the air behind me as I walked away, and replied:
"Broke ass trick. Get a job."
He continued to call after me as I went up the stairs, and I soooooooooooo wanted to turn on my heel and walk right up to him and say, "Well I guess my fat ass money isn't good enough for you, so don't be so goddamned offended." But I didn't. I guess because I was chicken or because I was still alone in a big station with a bunch of fucking savages around me.
It haunted me all night. Why was I so pissed off at some big ole able-bodied jerk calling me fat? I kept wishing I could go back and tell him off, tell him everything I think about his sorry ass.
Is it mean of me to refuse a penny to a (seemingly) homeless man? Fuck no. I had to eat a lot of shit to make my money, and I'mma keep having to do it if I want to get anywhere. I was never too good to work in a gas station or clean hotel rooms or wash laundry. Why can't you do the same? There are plenty of organizations out there to help you get work and housing. I, however, have to do all that on my own.
Am I selfish? Hell fucking yeah I am. I'm not helping every sad sack on the corner just to feel righteous. The only people I will ever support are my own flesh and blood.
So there's that,
PS: It reminded me of last winter when I was home sick. I ran out to the pharmacy, and on the way back, this thin white guy in a North Face parka (I don't even have a fucking North Face vest!) tried to get money out of me by saying he needed it for his HIV medication. I walked away without listening, and he called after me, "fucking fat bitch." Later that winter, he approached me a few blocks away from there, in the same coat, with the same story. I reminded him about the fat bitch comment and walked away. I saw him later that summer in a nearby neighborhood, asking for 10 bucks to stay in his apartment, and I reminded him about the fat bitch comment and walked away. I told him both times that money probably wouldn't be good enough for him.