What We Prefer Not To See

A warning…this is not a happy post.

I’m in Starbucks where there’s a homeless man, with no legs, in a wheelchair, parked in the center of the room.

It’s freezing out, so Haley and Kim, the two early baristas, let him stay, because how could you not in true conscience.

I watch a good 15 people come and go and not one of them look his way, and trust me, they see him because, how could you not.

He’s like an ad for a trip to Lourdes.

He’s four tables behind where I’m sitting as I squirm feeling his presence.  I finally get up to ask if he’d like coffee, the one thing the girls don’t do.

This is cruel, but I’m sure it’s like feeding a stray dog…it will come back at dinner time.

He mumbles yes, he’d like a cup.

“How do you take it,” I ask.

“Five sugars and milk.”

This man’s dignity is so non-existent, he can’t even look at me as snot runs down his nose.

Takes everything I have not to cry.

I get his coffee, fixing it, before putting napkins in his ice cold hands whispering, “Wipe your nose.”

As I watch him obey like a little kid, I think…

There but for the grace of God, go I.

SB

 

 

 

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About Susannah Bianchi

I'm just a girl who likes to write slightly on slant. I've had a career in fashion, dabbled in film and to be honest, I don't like talking about myself. Now my posts are another matter so I will let them speak for themselves. My eBooks, A New York Diary, Model Behavior: Friends For Life and Notes From A Working Cat can be found on Amazon.com. Thanks.
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50 Responses to What We Prefer Not To See

  1. Coyote from Orion says:

    I know how you feel. I was gone for all money by 18. I have been sober 17 years and people despise me because I spend time still with people like the man you describe. I have helped many to eat breakfast again. I have a friend who was cooked up for crimes that never occurred and he was incapable of committing because he was making a stir about it. We had a rogue police task force with media and DTN networks investigate anyone who helped this man or his not for profit organization. They freed Barabas. They hate you if you see through it and have the courage to be compassionate. The truth shall set us free.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Coyote from Orion says:

    You are spot on. So glad you see it. Hold your lantern.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. There but for the grace of God goes any of us. Sometimes it takes just one thing to start the downward spiral. I would have gotten him coffee too. I feed stray dogs…and cats.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Coyote from Orion says:

    High bottoms. Fashionable to be in recovery. They rarely hit rock bottom. I even hear some claim to be alcoholics who never drank. Gee I would have saved so much money. Lol

    Like

    • Yeah..we have lots of celebrities who have flagrantly broken their anonymity. Seems to be the norm.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Coyote from Orion says:

        They employ the traditions on their own self will mostly. Very little spirituality. Many remain anonymous to each other unless they want something. Very little 12 step work let alone spiritual awakenings. Some of the celebrities are the good ones who actually have changed and don’t need recognition for doing human acts.
        And don’t get me started on the wife beaters and other criminals claiming they aren’t responsible… I had one try to kill me outside a meeting one night with about 12 of his mates cheering him on. About the most constructive meeting I had been to in some time. All because they refused to talk to a desperate new comer because he was Indian and not a motorbike hero. I went back to put another $5 in their plate to thank them for entertainment and the opportunity to help a real alcoholic. General Secretary for the state did nothing… in fact sent me an invoice for the meeting I had been Secretary of. She had been an ex cop who achieved the almost unachievable…. being thrown out of the job for being “alcoholic”. Unfortunately it is all about looking good for court and it saves the prison system millions. We have rapists running free in this city to kill women like Jill Meagher because they are useful as police dogs yet people who do get locked up would in many cases never do anything wrong… except the heinous act of having no money

        Liked by 1 person

      • Maybe you should write about this.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Coyote from Orion says:

        I just did didn’t I? Lol… i am pretty busy helping people… not that I am asking for credit anymore these days or asking anyone to buy me a cuppa. I write to people in jail… when I aren’t visiting them. Sometimes I sleep too. Hard not to be grateful. If I were still drinking I wouldn’t have time to be of use to anyone and the only people ignoring me wouldn’t be the nice people with nice jobs.
        Have a great day

        Liked by 1 person

      • You are very passionate on the subject, so it would make a great memoir, in my humble op noon.

        Like

  5. Coyote from Orion says:

    And the drugs… drugs = money. They don’t want alcoholics at meetings now. I used to drink with several cops and I am yet to meet one who didn’t love money or cheat on his wife. I wish I could tell a different truth. When I became humble I became teachable. I have nothing left to lose anymore only my health has recovered… rudely

    Like

  6. micklively says:

    Maybe it is a happy post: his need was met, you did good, everyone who ignored him felt uncomfortable: result!

    Liked by 3 people

  7. George says:

    God bless you both.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Elle Knowles says:

    It takes a bit of courage to do what you do, but if others could get that courage up this world would be so much better. ~Elle

    Liked by 1 person

    • I don’t see where it’s courageous, but thank you. It’s just the right thing to do. I often wonder how people can just ignore the more unfortunate. Are their hearts just rusted shut? Or were they never open in the first place.

      Like

  9. Gail says:

    You are gifted with kindness.

    Like

  10. skinnyuz2b says:

    I agree with Mick, this is more of a happy story. Happy that the baristas let him inside, and happy that you warmed his hands, belly, and heart.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Tenacity T says:

    This choked me up. I hate this part. UGH! It’s terrible. No one should be hungry or homeless. It’s absolutely heartbreaking.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. There are times when I feel invisible in this world, this makes me wonder how this man must feel. Thank you for seeing him. Thank you for treating him like a human being. Thank you for telling him to wipe his nose. ❤
    This is a tale of hope and happiness.

    Like

  13. None of us know where we would be given just a shade difference in circumstances. Me, one would have me dead from a stroke, two would be broke without faith and severe insurance from the school system, three sitting where he is if diabetes took my legs and the government took my paycheck.
    It’s much easier to feel sorry and do something if you can come to grips with being there.
    Just an opinion.
    Scott

    Like

  14. Patricia says:

    It is a sad post but one of loving kindness and hope. And you are right…it could be one of us sitting alone and unwanted.

    Liked by 1 person

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