I pass the Tenleytown Best Buy and there are tents just outside of the metro entrance that lead right to the doors. I wonder about the homeless man that often sleeps in the little alcove, where the metro escalators meet sidewalk that hedges along Wisconsin Avenue.
I wonder how he perceives the fancy tents, the sleeping tents, the televisions on battery power, the electric heaters, and the warm jackets.
I remember I slept on the street once, and that was for a fable made film, a myth that I quote and reference on a weekly, and sometimes daily basis. I can see sleeping on the street for that.
I look now on these young men, with their college sweatshirts, and hats worn sideways, and PlayStation Portables and I know that they are waiting in line for a video game console. The PlayStation 3. The mere thought of losing three days of work or school or what have you is just not attractive to me. Sure, I wouldn’t mind getting one, but not this way. This feels too much like work.
Me? I’m looking on, and part of me wonders how many will walk away with one only to jump online and auction it off. On the one hand, it’s not like they are stealing a child’s holiday gift. Six hundred dollars is a lot of money.
I’m actually at the Best Buy for work, to pick up a longer phone cord so that we can move a fax machine tomorrow morning.
As I leave Best Buy, cord safely in hand, I look and see that the line is growing. A few more people here and there, and it will have to line up around the building, towards Albemarle.
It’s just not worth it.