I learned from my father that everybody matters; give the garbage man the same respect you give your boss and somebody will always have your back.
Dad has hundreds of friends he can count on in life because they can always depend on him.
Today, while taking pictures of the demolition work on Dobel Street, a man came out of a decrepit house I thought was abandoned (where the Eng family used to live) and called me over to his porch stoop.
He was a white man, about 35 years old, had bushy red hair and wild eyes. He wanted to know why I was walking up and down the street taking pictures. I told him about the park project and this blog.
I could hear some haunting goth music coming from his house, which became even more chilling when the man revealed to me that he was a descendant of JFK and then began to quote Shakespeare.
Odd? Eccentric? Or just plain crazy?
It was freezing cold outside, so the man — donned in only a t-shirt, jeans and sneakers — invited me into his house. I quickly declined, suspecting he might be on some kind of recreational drug. His eyes gave it away.
He continued to press me on why I was there and had such a keen interest in the neighborhood and the park. I said that the kids of the neighborhood mattered to me most; it was important to me that they had a nice park to play in during the summer. I then shook his hand and headed for my car.
As I began to walk away, the man yelled out: “You keep it green; I’ll keep the monsters away.”
Perhaps he was simply a nut case whom I’ll never see again.
On the other hand, just maybe he is a descendant of JFK (he did have red hair) and will keep a monster out of my path at the park someday.