Thursday, November 27

do you believe in Santa?

P: Why doesn't Santa die?
Me: Because he's more spirit than person.

There is a bum that lives in my neighborhood. He's about my age, more or less. Usually he's drunk. Sometimes he's not. And we recognize each other. I know this because he no longer asks me for money. I've never given him anything. When he's drunk I shuffle my kids away from him. When he's not, I ignore him completely.

But I don't really. Because I think about him. I notice when I haven't seen him for a few days. I notice when he looks sick, when he's cleaned up. When he's had a haircut. I wonder where he sleeps in this cold. And I wonder how long I will pretend to ignore him. Until I no longer see him anymore and wonder if he died somewhere? And I'll think with fading interest that I might have helped him out.

This is the worst kind of apathy.

I've been struggling to figure out what this post is about. I'm sure you can relate. I suppose it's me, recognizing the things that teach me something about myself. Simple questions from my kids get me wondering what I really believe. And how to define it. I question why I've never helped this person I see everyday. I think it's because I don't believe that giving him money would help, but that's an easy excuse. Am I more than that? Maybe not. I should be.

But I wouldn't be here (in every sense of the word) if I didn't take risks... with people and ideas.

Happy Thanksgiving.


  1. My father who is well into his 60's still believes in Santa and the spirit of Christmas. So maybe that's why i too still believe in Santa. :)

    Sometimes you can't help because people don't want to be helped. Growing up we had a homeless man who lived in the ravine near my neighbourhood. He was fit, carried a huge backpacker's backpack and could ususally be found at the local library reading. From what i understand he was incredibly well read and frightfully intelligent. He was also happy with his life and didn't want a "hand up."

    Happy Thanksgiving. :)

  2. I beat myself up about stuff like that all the time. It's a catch 22-damned if you do, and damned if you don't.

    Happy Thanksgiving!


...and you may ask yourself, did I get here?