Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Getting ready


Advent. A time of preparation. A time to get ready.

Milica and her colleagues are rehearsing for their Saturday night concert. Getting ready.

George has been on the steps for three days now. I’m getting worried. Between George and the others, I’m getting worn out. I’ve called the precinct. Project Reachout. No answer. So I go out to talk to him.

George. It’s been three days now. Do you have a plan?

Plan? Plan? How many times I have to tell you? Don’t you get it? I got to be ready. It ain’t about what they gonna do, it’s what they do do. Yeah, I got my place. But I see what’s goin on. Everyday, some one else gone. They  drivin the people out. You know. You know. You know what they did last year. They stop them subsidies. They stop em. People can’t pay the rent. People get homeless. So them other people can get rich offa them. The city pimpin the homeless. Pimpin them. And you know what they do November 1st? I know you know. Don’t tell me you don’t know. They call it the food cliff. You already try and eat on 5 motherfuckin bucks a day and now it 3.50? You fuckin kiddin me? Who gonna eat on that? Why I gonna be safe? They gonna  get me too…They not gonna rest until I be homeless too. I can’t wait. I got to get ready. Got to keep my skills sharp. I got to be ready.

And what can I say? Go ahead George, you get ready. You get ready.

Karen from the Christmas tree lot across Amsterdam comes in from the cold. This year she and Guillame have taken over the spot from Pascal who got a better gig tending bar in Costa Rica. He told them to go see the church people. Told them we were good people. As always, I’m happy to see our Quebecois friends in their annual sojourn.

Marty’s talking again. How his father had him take notes on Bishop Fulton J. Sheen’s sermons so he could help him get ready for his own. (Yes, we’ve heard that before.)

Apparently Sonnie is heading in for some serious surgery tomorrow. Apparently he’s afraid he might not make it. Anna wants us to send a sound  team over to record him. Can’t do that. But soon enough Anna and Sonnie come in the door. Pastor, I want to be ready, do you understand? I have to record my songs for my kids. This could be my last chance. I want to be ready.

So Danielle and I talk it over.  We open up the garage band program on the laptop. Sonnie tunes the guitar. Plays his songs a few times. The says, OK, I’m ready. So first we record his Messiah song. Then another. He seems satisfied.
Sonnie, all the best on the surgery tomorrow, I say.
It’s all right, he says, I’m ready.

When I go out to go home, George is gone. He's ready.

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