Monday, August 28, 2006

Hate 2: City Face

A few weeks back, I talked about how I got yelled at and threatened by a crazy guy on the street here in Philadelphia (Hate). This same thing happened to me again a week ago. Another crazy homeless guy yelled at me. I tried to play it off, but it kind of got to me. The first time it could have been a chance thing. But twice in a month? Maybe I was provoking it somehow.

I asked a native Philadelphian about it, and he told me to stop smiling in the street. I needed to adopt a "city face", not smiling at strangers, not looking at strangers.

It sounds awful, but I've been trying it out. The fact is that I understand why city folk walk around with zero expression on their faces. No one messes with me now. Homeless guys don't bother asking for change.

It has its downside-- I walked right past a friend without seeing him, for example. On the other hand, I understand that there are a lot of people out there who just aren't right.

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