Paul's Internet Landfill/ lj/ Karma overload

Karma overload

Late as usual, I was walking down the street to go to market when a betoqued fellow with alcohol on his breath panhandled me. "Do you have fifty cents for the bus?" he asked. I gave him my usual cold-hearted answer. Then he asked me an interesting question: "Why? Why are you reluctant to give a guy fifty cents for the bus?"

I went through the usual cold-hearted litany: I was tired of being ripped off, I didn't want to support people's addictions, etc. The panhandler (whose name was John) found my reasons interesting. "You can't let your heart become hard because some guys lie to you" he said.

We had a conversation, going back and forth about bus tickets and selling tickets for cash and supporting addictions and helping people out. We probably spent a good fifteen minutes gabbing. I guess that conversation was worth money to me, because I ended up giving him a dollar, which maybe John spent on bus fare and which maybe John spent on alcohol. Who knows? Maybe it was a clever panhandling trick, but he earned his dollar.

I would rather not think of how I will react the next time I get panhandled.

I was late for the market, so I skipped it, knowing that I would have to either do without potatoes and apples this week or go to a real grocery store.

I snuck down to the Working Centre instead, where people gave me free loaves of bread and refused to let me pay for them. Now I am further abusing privilege to post this instead of fixing a bicycle.

Who can figure this life out for me?

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