July 17, 2018
As we were chatting with Bruce, a fellow sauntered across the street and into the shade where we were sitting. Despite coming into the shade to rest, he was very willing to chat.
If you don't mind me asking, what has been the most challenging thing for you?
"Quitting drinking. Every time I try to quit it’s like I’m thinking I’m going to try and do good and then all of the sudden my mom and dad pop into my head and then I start crying. I’m not shy to say it. Sometimes I get scared just to pray."
Why are you scared to pray? Are you scared about hearing something or thinking too much about something?
"I see a lot of things in my dreams, it’s like I’m telling a fortune. About how things are going to be."
What have you seen? Or are they too difficult to talk about?
"Yeah, so I was going to show you something. *points to his ankle* I broke my ankle on ice. Right behind Baccarats. This happened a couple years ago. Just cracked it. I was like 'Ahh, somebody help me', but there was no one around. So I crawled on to the street. I couldn't walk, it was too icy. So I just kept calling, and was like 'Hey can you call the hope van for me?'. They finally came and got me, took me to the [George] Spady and then I was just chilling there. It was so painful. And I said 'Hey can I go to the hospital?', and they say 'Yeah ok, I’ll call'. So they called. So I went there. They gave me some demerol or whatever and killed the pain. They put in two titanium plates, seven screws and one with a bolt."
So how did you get around afterward?
"It took a while man, had to pull myself out. That’s all good."
Have you had any other really bad injuries?
"Yeah *points to arm and chest*. Stabbed with a machete. Right through my arm and into my stomach. Happened 2002-2003, around there. So that’s why I'm on [social assistance], help for people who can't work. How am I supposed to work? *Points to hand, scar on hands*. Look at my forehead."
What happened there?
"A lot of things, but I lived through them all. I took them all out. I’m a real OG."