To continue along the same theme as the last post, I like to give beer to homeless people. This has not always been a pleasurable pass time for me. During some of my younger days, I would walk past a homeless man with disdain in my eyes. "Get a job" was one of the more common thoughts that used to enter my mind. "Drunk" was another.
One day a number of years ago, I was walking into the grocery store, to only purchase alcohol, and bum asked me for money. I made some lame excuse, or pretended I didn't hear him, and I thought to myself "Man, this guy is only going to use that cash for booze." Then I realized I was only going to use my cash for booze. I laughed out loud while shopping in the grocery store at my hypocrisy. All of my condescending and negative thoughts seemed so pointless, ironic and hypocritical. My thinking instantly shifted, as if a veil had been lifted and I was able to laugh at my former thought process. As I walked out of the grocery store with my six pack, I broke one of the plastic rings holding my cold six beers together and gave the bum one. "Thanks a lot!" he enthusiastically told me as I walked to my car.
Since then, if I am only going to a store to buy alcohol, I always try and share some with a bum that asks me. Most often, this is done by giving him a beer or two out of the case. The plan doesn't work so well when I buy a bottle of vodka and ask him to tilt his head back while I carefully pour to avoid contaminating the bottle or drowning the recipient.
A few days ago I went to the Smith's grocery store on St. Michael's street here in Santa Fe. Despite purchasing no alcohol during my shopping trip, I saw a man begging and began to feel compassion. I walked over to him, and asked him if he liked beer.
"Yeah, I like a lot of the microbrews that the Second Street Brewery puts together. Especially their IPA." the bum replied. I started to get worried at this stage.
"Have you tried the Marble Red?" he asked me.
"Yeah, it's a bit hoppy for my taste. Marble tends to hop their beers a ton. I'm not much into hops." I replied. "Would you like a beer? I think I've got some Coors Light in the back of my car..."
"Ummm, I guess so..." he replied hesitantly.
I handed the bum a warm can of Coors Light and he didn't even thank me.
* All bums are over the age of 21 when participating in the Brian Free Beer Program.
Monday, April 2, 2012
Today I was riding my bike along Silver and Columbia, very close to the University of New Mexico in beautiful Albuquerque, New Mexico at about 7:00 p.m., and I saw a dude laying on the ground with a busted head. I stopped to make sure everything was OK. The guy was on the ground, with a pool of blood coming from his head.
Tony, Who We Found Laying On The Ground With Blood Coming From His Head - Picture Taken After He Sat Up.
Blood From Tony's Head - See Above For Scale
I called 911, and proceeded to answer the paramedic dispatcher's questions. While conferring with Tony in order to provide the necessary information, it became apparent that he was either mentally unclear due to the large gash on the side of his head, alcohol or drug consumption, or some combination. However, I wanted to make sure that someone with medical training was able to arrive, and help him, as I would hope that someone would do the same for me if (when) I get drunk and hurt myself.
An Albuquerque Police man arrived, and I attempted to shake his hand. He informed me that he didn't shake hands - I automatically assumed this was part of the Albuquerque Police Department's outstanding Community Outreach training protocol.
Lilly - 505-453-XXXX - A Fellow Good Samaritan - Majoring in Anthropology and Interested in Having Dinner With Me
All in all, it made for an interesting ride back to my place. Hopefully Tony is OK, and everyone will call the paramedics when I am intoxicated and hurt myself. The only thing that surprised me was how unfriendly the APD cop was when I was clearly just trying to help, I figure everything else is par for the course with living in the UNM Student Ghetto.