Many of those who live in the “Charnock Ranch Historic Business Area”:http://www.palms-california.us/staticpages/index.php?page=20051125145006742#Anchor-CHARNOCK-37516 apparently have no particular job; I see them gadding about every mid-day and every afternoon. Of course, if I had anything to do myself, then I wouldn’t be out to see my neighbors, but that’s not the point of this blog entry. The point is that these obviously unemployed people — unkempt, nappy-haired, filthy-clothed, pockmarked, hollow-cheeked, pinpointed pupils — have a lot more going on, cash flow-wise, than I had expected.
The other day I saw an older, stooped gentleman with a mountain man beard and a brown fitted corduroy jacket and a light green t-shirt covered with the pinprick holes that moths make. He paid for his coffee in quarters and nickels but under his arm was a Wall Street Journal and a large envelope marked “your statements enclosed.” Perhaps he was one of those eccentrics who live an ascetic life and leave behind millions? Or perhaps those were his neighbor’s statements. From the directionless shuffle that brought this man around the corner, I suspect the latter.
Then there was the guy I saw crossing the street. He was dressed all skater-punk but, let’s face it, his clothes were about five years old and stiff and faded from having been washed maybe a dozen times in that period. I couldn’t see the pupils in his baby blue eyes. But he walked purposefully across the street, and under his arm he held the entrepreneurial manifesto “The Art of the Start”:http://amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1591840562/ref=nosim/wadearmstrong-20. I wonder: what’s a guy like this starting?
Perhaps I should take lessons. There’s people like this all around my neighborhood, with no particular evidence of a means of support, but every day they keep going. There must be a trick to it, and I aim to find out.