Day 7 – December 29, 2010 – Pavement Thoughts

Start from the beginning

Pavement Thoughts – 11am

I am observing the world around me while sitting on the pavement.  I can literally sit here for hours, as long as I take a few washroom breaks in between.   Today, it is a very quiet day in downtown.  The Christmas spirit died off.  There are not very many shoppers and not many smiles.  More than half of the homeless/impoverished people who walk by acknowledge me, while I cease to exist to the rest.

Nobody has offered me any money yet; I don’t want money anyway.  I have no addiction problems to support.  I’m content.  I have everything I need.  The amount of money required to survive these streets is surprisingly very little.  It’s the addiction that creates a high demand for money.  For the folks back home, it is the addiction to material objects – not drugs – that creates such a high demand for money.

A thought that I am now contemplating is how “green” homeless people really are.  Many of the homeless are environmentally friendly.  They don’t drive cars, they don’t consume oil or electricity and they produce less garbage.  Think about how much power, oil or garbage you produce and compare yourself to someone who is homeless.  There is surely a large discrepancy between you and them.

To add another element to our analysis, we can see that the homeless collect most of the city’s cans for recycling.  So while they work to make a buck or two, they indirectly help to save the environment.  After all, we may need the homeless to live in a cleaner and greener society.  This analysis is often overlooked, instead we focus on negative stereotypes.

Another observable difference between them and us is that there are no TV shows or Movies to watch or iPhones to play with while being homeless.  Movies, TV shows and the news follow scripts from start to finish.  In comparison, when two people are conversing, their dialogue are not read off a board or memorized in advance.  Those people are having a human experience, but in the other cases mentioned above, it is a human having a virtual experience.  I consider someone memorizing speeches no different from a robot or a machine taking instructions.  These examples may show that the homeless are closer to reality than those who live in the “virtually insane” world which we have created for ourselves.

The technological advancements and gadgets may numb our brains to allow us to enter a world for 0′s and 1′s, as we have in computer language.  But if we want to advance as a society, we need to be human first.  We can enter a golden age if there is a great awakening within the auto-pilot driven human machines walking along downtown – I included – but it requires some effort to snap out of this state of mind.  Change can only come from within and I believe that it is time to enter it now.

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