December 2008

I-75 Entrance ramps

This seems to be a really popular place to find men located asking for money from drivers pausing for red lights on their way to away from where the homeless guy who is standing and begging for a buck.

Have you seen them or do you avert your eyes too! I used to, along time ago but not anymore and I have since working downtown so about four years now always tried to say hello or at least nod and acknowledge these men and the few women I see. I let them know that I am not blind to them even if I do not have any money to give, which I sometimes do and judge it sorely on a moment and what I have to give. Sometimes I give whatever food I have in the car that I can spare.

And its not just I75 of course it’s all the highways around town, all around the world I would imagine but I mostly see men at 75 as well as the Lodge.

Makes perfect logistical sense too because in the morning people are going to work, at night home and even later at night to the casinos or to games and the events of our lives and then home again! I have noticed some men have places that seem to be their territory. Two summers ago I remember a guy just off the Lodge by work who was there every morning then another guy was there all of a sudden and after awhile the first guy was back and on the concrete pillar next to where he stands the words “Al’s place” were written. And then I noticed some time after Al’s name was scratched off. I wonder about that sometime as Al is no longer around and that corner has been now for the last year manned by another man who I often gave parts of my lunch too, but he is now gone and a younger guy, Kalon, is now there who I have wrote about before. I have given him a blanket and a hat and some food.

So the other night Friday night the 26th I was out in burbs, Royal Oak, dining with friends and I took 9 Mile to 75 as I had to stop at my bank to get $ to pay my neighbor the cable bills. So normally I don’t go this way. And since it was the burbs I decided to get gas as I just don’t do that in my hood at night so I decided to stop at this station on the corner and get gas and a water, which I dislike doing but I was not headed home and oddly did not have a water bottle with me.

Anyways as I was heading in to pay I notice a man outside with his bike just hanging out. I nodded on my way in expecting him to ask me for money but he did not. I paid for my gas and water and walked out. The gentleman was still there; I looked him and asked him if he was hungry. He told me yes, I told him I could help him out as I walked to my jeep.

He stayed but I motioned back as I walked for him to follow me, he did. I told him I had some cans of food. He interrupted me and said, “Miss I don’t think you understand I live out here” and he gestured here as where we were. I told him I understood and had some canned food if he wanted it. He then corrected himself and explained to me that he thought I said I had some pans for food. “No no no!!” As I grabbed a few cans and asked him if he had an opener he did not, so I choose accordingly.

I asked him his name, he told me and I have totally forgotten what his name is, I suck, but I told him mine. He thanked me as I got back in the jeep and headed south on I-75.

Yesterday, Monday December 29 as I was heading home from Crossroads (more on that in my next blog) I stopped at the light where the boulevard hits the 75 service drive. There was a man there who I have seen on a few occasions with a sign in his hand asking for help and blessing you the reader.

I rolled down my window and asked him if he was hungry, he was. I stopped the jeep, and opened the hatch and as I did I motioned to the car behind me to go around. I then asked the gentleman if he needed any clothes he indicated that he did. I got him a sweater and a shirt and scarf, then I got him some food. He had a can opener! I wanted ask him if he could eat apple chips, you see someone gave me a bag containing snack size bags of apple chips,…well I cant really give this to all the guys because they do not have teeth. I looked at him but could not tell but his voice was very clear, so I just blurted out ‘excuse me but do you have teeth?’ he looked at me funny and said he did. I apologized and told him I had food that was not easy to eat without and would he like some! He said yes!

I asked if he was staying near by and he told me in an abandoned trailer behind a commercial building where someone else was occupying that. He told me the other guy looks out for his stuff when he is gone. I asked him if he needed a blanket that I had a really good wool one (the match to other one I mentioned in another blog). He told me would very much like that blanket and that it would help very much! He told me the trailer is not warm but it as least blocks the wind and anything would be helpful! I bagged up all his items and asked him he would be able to carry it back as I was totally at that moment willing to give him a lift there and back. He told me he would be able to handle the stuff! I asked him his name and told him mine.

And for some fucking reason I can’t seem to remember the white’s guys names. Why is that? Hopefully it’s because I have holding in four blogs at once without having had the time to write them all out and from here on out I will not have this problem! Wish me luck.

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