A few weeks ago Michael, who has been homeless, found an apartment of his own in south central. We formed an unexpected friendship. I lived on 9th and Broadway, and he sat at the opposite corner everyday. He was shot in the stomach multiple times, and was unable to work. I think the friendship formed because of our candid conversations. From him complaining because I got him the “wrong” diapers, to me complaining that he can’t keep asking me for money, assuming I have money. My favorite memory of him was on a Friday night. I had hit the bars with some girlfriends, and decided it was time to put myself to bed. I saw him at his usual spot, and he asked for change. I told him how hard I worked for my money, and that he shouldn’t just assume I had money to give. THEN….I offered to buy him a carne asada burrito, and he replied, “yes, but add rice and no onions”. So we both ate our burritos on the corner. Michael looked out for me. Living downtown la can be a rough area. Michael would warn me to avoid walking by certain people so I wouldn’t be in any harm. Michael speaks to many people all day every day. I may be just a distant faint memory, but he made an imprint in my life.
I don’t remember his name, but it was not his name that fascinated me. I have titled this Kathak, because it is one of the eight forms of Indian classical dances. The day was very hot, and I was intrigued, obviously, because of the layers and the beauty of his costume. He explained that he was a part of an Indian Classical dance competition, and that his outfit was very “expensive”. Total cost -$120.