Thursday, October 16, 2014

The Homeless Guy's Business Card

Last Thursday, we were joined at the South Bay Writer's Workshop by a new guy.  He seemed shy as he sat, head bent down, studying some papers in his hand, but newbies often are.  Cooper, who happened to be sitting closest to him was chatting quietly to him.

After we sorted ourselves out, paper and pens at the ready, she stood up and said that he (head nod) had a question for us and then he'd be gone.  He looked around shyly through strands of dark brown hair that fell like curtains around his face.  He explained, haltingly, that he had written a book for a non-profit (organization) and how did he go about getting it reviewed in the local papers?

Naturally almost everyone chimed in with a suggestion.  I said that I'm a former PR counsel and would be happy to help...his head jerked around and he blurted, "No! no! publicity for me!"

I grinned and said, "Damn!  You don't make it easy!" whereupon he looked me in the eye and gave a small, shy smile. 

I apologized for not having a business card on me and he dug in a pocket of his khaki windbreaker, handed me one of his, thanked us all and left. 

After the meeting, I said to Cooper, "I thought that was a friend of yours?" and she laughed and said, "Nina, that was a homeless guy!  Didn't you see how ... disheveled he looked?  The wrinkled khakis?  The dirty hair?"  Growing exasperated, "Didn't you smell him?"

I blinked and said, "No, I smoke; I can't smell, anything." and flipped the card over.  It read:

2nd Lt. Hxxx Sxxx, CAP
Clover Field Composition Squadron 51
   with the street address, squadron phone number, a home number and e-mail address.

I wondered if it was indeed his card and, if so, does the Civil Air Patrol know they've lost one?

Today Thursday has rolled around again and I am curious to see if he will be back.

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