"It’s like um…"
"…this guy was it, in terms of the lowest, ‘cos you know, you see some people on the street asking for money and they’re wearing decent clothing or have a mobile phone, and you’re suspicious about whether they’re actually homeless - ruining it for the real homeless. I don’t think this guy actually…didn’t um…he didn’t actually ask for money, I don’t think. He just sat there, dirty and unshaven. I saw him smile once for a dog that hopped up and licked his face. Yeah he smiled, before the owner of the dog pulled sharp on the lead and that was that. But the guys smile: horrible teeth, black, wood, you know, a wooden colour; teeth from the dark ages. I feel bad ‘cos I was disgusted by him, by his appearance. I didn’t want to have to look at him, didn’t want him to be there all the time, ruining my evening. No one hassled him, he just looked so timid. Huge eyes that sort of stood out under all this fur. Well, hair, beard, eyebrows, mustache, all big, animated. Beautiful eyes, oh yeah, wonderful, huge eyelashes. I bet he was one of the most beautiful men, with eyes like that, but who would know?"
"When I think about this – well, obviously, I said to him I would have helped... but thinking about it… I know, I know. I wouldn’t have stopped. I’m sure I’d have realized he’d probably lost someone, you know, and it’s not like I’d have just walked past not caring, because I do care, it makes me sad, it makes me sad about the… people have this idea that people don’t care for strangers, as though they don’t feel anything for them, but they do; they empathize and feel sorrow, they cry for people they don’t know. But that doesn’t mean that they will help them."
Photo Courtesy of Diego Cupola
Mark Ludgate was born in a hospital that no longer exists in Southern England. He now lives out his days in Brighton, England. Above else he is a coward; but he is also proud, perhaps too proud. This allows him to sustain a certain dignity, to mask the constant overload of anxiety; which would otherwise make itself apparent. He spends every waking hour (other than those hours he is working) writing, and on occasion praises his anxiety which is one of his primary motivators. He is twenty three years old. He is neither married nor with children. He hopes that one day he may get out of working in the restaurant industry; it crushes his already overworked soul.