An encounter with Sharp Dressed Bum

Having come home from work, a few minutes ago I threw my backpack over my shoulder and headed to the Flying Saucer. As I crossed the parking lot at Second and Gayoso, I saw Sharp Dressed Bum, in his navy snowflake hat and winter coat, walking down Second. He didn’t see me and I stopped for a minute to let him pass.

My plan backfired. Immediately as I rounded the corner onto Second, I saw him ten feet ahead, begging a couple for money. “We’re sorry, we can’t help,” they said, and quickly moved on.

I walked right past him, not even acknowledging him. But he acknowledged me. “Punk ass,” he started. “I’m gonna beat your fucking ass one of these days, mother fucker. I’m gonna knock your head in… you better watch out… punk.” This has been typical conversation from him every time I’ve encountered him for the past three years.

Of course, I know he’s all bark and no bite. But still… how much longer are we going to tolerate people like him on the streets? And how many people visit downtown, get approached by him and decide to never come back? How many people decide to move out of downtown because they’re sick of dealing with him every time they go out?