21 September, 2007

A New Twist

I've been asking Modesto for more details about his life.
There's always a new twist, a slight variation.
What is the truth?
Does it matter?

20 September, 2007

Ojos Rojas

Tuesday evening walk down Folsom towards a cold, deserted 11th street. Haven't seen Modesto in several days. I turn the corner and there he is, leaning on his little broom. "Modesto, what are you doing?" I ask.
"I've been waiting for V____ one hour and half". He shakes his head.
"if he don't show up soon, wait no more. Go sleep. I'm cold, tired."
"Where are you sleeping now, Modesto?" He raises his right hand and points -
"in the alley, where I always sleep - my sleeping bag there right now."
"You're back in the alley? That's great, Modesto".
A few weeks back, he'd abandoned his spot in the alley after he'd been attacked. I saw him a couple of days after the attack. There was a terrible scab above his right eyebrow. "Modesto, what happened to you?"
"Two guys come. I'm asleep, wake me up, beat me. They took all my money."
Modesto's eyes are tired and red. His sleeping bag is bright yellow.

17 September, 2007

What's in a Name?

He told me his name was "Modesto".
When I ask around about him, some give me a puzzled look. I describe him and they say, "oh, you mean Cuba". (Pronounced, "Koo-bah.)
Once I heard someone refer to him as "Tequila".
Strange, I've never known him to drink Tequila.
I always call him Modesto.
"Modesto, mi amigo, que pasa?!"

Aunt Violet Asks About Modesto

"Who is Modesto? I want to know more about him."

15 September, 2007

Where is He?

I've seen no sign of Modesto in several days. Last night I asked one of the neighbors if he'd seen Modesto. "No," he said, "not for a couple of days."

Maybe he's gone to another neighborhood.

Modesto's Birthday cont.

We plan on throwing a a big party for Modesto.
Not sure where or when.

Modesto's Birthday

"October four," he pauses, "Nine-Teen forty-seven!bI'll be sixty-one, Sixty-One! Gonna get me, snake skin boots, a nice cowboy hat, and gonna shave my beard. You'll see. I'm gonna have the most beautiful cowboy boots".