Friday, February 13, 2009
A co-worker and I just went to a little dive in the hood' (or as hood as you're gonna get out here in the rich DC burbs) to lunch. So, we're eating and out of nowhere, this disheveled looking guy craddling an infant walks in.
I already know the routine, and I'm hood' knowledgeable enough to know the hustle. He goes from table to table amongst the day laborers (I said hood, maybe I meant barrio) asking for money for pampers and milk. Of course, none of these guys understand him, so he gets no dinero. He badgers the store owner, who obviously has seen the hustle before and ignores him.
Finally, he spots us, the only two other black guys in the Korean owned Texas-style sandwich shop (yeah, add all that up) and his eyes light up. We're marks!
So, dude comes over and asks us if we have $5 for some pampers and milk. My co-worker doesn't even turn around to acknowledge him, waves the guy off and barely loses a beat on the phone convo he's having. Then dude looks at me, and I look down at the baby. Big mistake.
Arrghhh, why did I do that?
The child is absolutely adorable, a little baby boy about the age of my youngest son, no older than 3 months. He's napping peacefully, but barely dressed, on this, a very gusty and cool February day. He's chubby, but he looks hongry. I can't smell him, but if he smells like (the guy who I assume to be) his Dad, chances are he's not doing too well overall. For about half a second, I think about giving dude some money, just because he might actually be hungry and need diapers.
Then I look at the Dad. This bama looks like a really down-on-his-luck Jermaine Dupri. His lips are so ashy they're damn near translucent. His hair hasn't been washed or cut in ages. Yet, oddly, he has on an Ed Hardy-style black print hoodie that must go for at least $200. Somethin' about this picture don't add up.
I'm not saying the dude is on crack, I'm just sayin', he looks sorta crackish.
Question: What would YOU do? Would you give the crackhead money for food and pampers? Would you call the cops or CPS?