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Thursday, December 11, 2008

Jumpsuit Guy

Nearly three years ago, and shortly after I started this blog, I wrote this entry about a homeless man named David who was sitting out on a bench just outside the building where I work.

He's still there. And has been pretty much everyday, rain or shine, scorching heat or freezing cold. They demolished and reconfigured a small park down the end of the block because too many homeless were congregating there and he remained. They've started programs to discourage panhandling and he remains. They've opened expensive high-rise urban condos a couple of blocks away and he remains.

Three years.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Homeless man seems to have found a home. I wonder what his story is and where he goes at night.

8:18 PM, December 16, 2008  
Blogger valis said...

He doesn't go anywhere at night. I've had to come by the building late at night, or on weekends or been by early in the morning. he's always there. In fact, he's asked me before if everything is alright if I'm coming into the building at an odd hour.

He sleeps on the bench under a blanket or perhaps sleeps against the wall of a building or under an awning if it is raining or snowing.

I know snippets of his story, most of which I've heard second hand from other people. But I know he has a family and kids and grandkids. I understand his family brings him money to survive. He never panhandles. You see him occasionally with a styrofoam take out meal.

I heard from one guy that he's a brilliant mechanical engineer. The guy in question had an older sedan that he would bring to Jumpsuit Guy for repairs whenever it was acting up. He'd diagnose the problem, tell him what parts to buy and then install them.

One theory I've heard is that he has Turret's Syndrome and this is why he gave up on living in the "regular" world. He does shout out strange noises sometimes and seems to have tics or odd behaviors. He is often talking to someone who isn't there. These behaviors may be the source of this theory. He apparently does have mental problems, but it is unknown whether they caused his homelessness or are the product of his homelessness. I'd probably be crazy if I spent 3 straight years sitting by myself on a bench.

2:18 PM, December 18, 2008  

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