Tabatha Deans

Bringing Integrity to the Written Word

ON THE PROWL
Tired of debating the motives of the man at the library, I decided to put an honest effort into going places where the kind of people I would like to meet might be. So, with sun shining, I gussied up—wearing a casual skirt and donning the bitch boots—and strutted right down 17th Avenue to the heart of the business district on the mall, and plopped myself down at a table on the strip outside the yuppy Starbucks.
What a difference the outfit makes. It occurred to me that every time I venture downtown I do so with a purpose. Shopping, jogging or heading to the library, I usually have my backpack on and am walking fast to get where I’m going. I guess I usually look like a tourist. Today I was forced to walk slower, because of the boots, and I did get a lot more looks and smiles. Today I looked like I belonged downtown.
Today happened to be the beginning of the three day Downtown Denver Arts festival, so after lingering over coffee and people watching, I strolled through some of the artist booths. One of the artists asked me if I worked downtown, and I replied no, I was just a starving writer looking to get out of the house and get some human interaction. We chatted for a while and he mentioned he had some friends who sometimes needed the services of a writer for proposals and stuff. I told him technical writing wasn’t my favorite, but I gave him my card anyway. Any writing assignment can look good when you’re hungry.
By early afternoon the streets were too full of people to move around comfortably, so I headed up the street towards home and lunch. I was debating whether or not to wait for the bus, but decided my feet were already numb from walking in the boots, so I may as well walk all the way home. I stopped for the light at Broadway and 17th, and the man selling newspapers to help pay for rehab chatted me up.
He said “Hi, how you doin’ beautiful.” I said “fine, nice weather you have today.” We chatted about the weather and he flirted with me. I was polite and smiled. He asked how my day was, I said good. In an effort to end the conversation as I saw the light was about to change, I told him I was done for the day and just walking home.
“Walking home?” he looked at the bus stop across the street. “A beautiful lady like you shouldn’t have to walk home.” And he started digging in his pants pockets to give me money for the bus. This man, who was standing on the street corner selling papers to raise money, who probably stayed in a shelter at night, was getting ready to give me 2.50 for bus fare. Wow, and I wasn’t even wearing my homeless outfit.
“No, thank you. That’s not necessary. The exercise if good for me.” I told him.
He smiled and extended his hand to shake mine.
“It was certainly a pleasure to chat with you today ma’am.” he said. And he sent me on my way.
So the outfit didn’t land me a date. But I did walk home with a smile on my face and a renewed sense of humanity in my heart.

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June 1, 2011 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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