I glided along the pier shooting the sunset. The sound of the tide underneath me. The wind blowing my hair against my face causing my locks to blow across my lens. I stopped to drop my camera bags and get another shot.
“Perfect,” I whisper as I raise my head away from my viewer to that of a man approaching me wearing a ivory cardigan stained drips of something that missed his mouth. It was buttoned to expose his waistline bulging though each space between the buttons. In his left hand he carried a cup of food, in the other a old gray and white plaid suitcase that no longer closed properly–dirty fabrics stuck out from both sides. His faded blue pants were frayed at the bottom from resting between his heel and gray corduroy slippers. He did not raise his feet from the ground as he walked, instead making that annoying sliding sound with his feet.
He smiled as he approached me. I smiled back. His dirty blonde curls blew in the wind, a scruffy beard was growing on his face. His hazel eyes met mine–warmth felt. “Can you give me some change or a dollar to get some food?” “Sure.” I reached in my pocket and reached out to him with what I had there. Wishing I could ask him to wipe the corner of his mouth. He put his suitcase down to count it. I walked off the pier onto the sand. He continued onto the pier to ask others for cash.
I returned to the pier to shoot after dark photographs.
The beggar was leaving. As we passed I did not look at him he did not look at me.
I processed the entire moment of his asking me for change again and realized that cup of food he was holding was hot and homemade. The warmth in his eyes was actually a twinkle from the feeling of seeing me as a sucker. I laughed out loud and thought, he’s got a great hustle.
What is that saying, “Don’t hate the player”