He's an ugly guy with an ugly face. We don't follow him everywhere he goes but we suspect he brings up the rear in the human race. Despite that, he is a man and he seems to be an honorable one, even if he is often misunderstood.
No one goes to college to be a panhandler. It's not a profession any parent is proud their offspring chooses to pursue. Some people, by design and destiny, have no choice but to live off the indulgence of others. If you are in downtown Boston, you'll pass plenty of people shaking a styrofoam cup with a rattle of coins in its bottom. The Spare Change Guy isn't one of them. He keeps his earnings in his pocket and asks outright for a handout.
He has a voice that can scratch concrete. He travels Boston Common or the Public Garden or Park Street Station scrounging for a little pocket money. His voice is both whining and grating when he calls out to all who can hear, "Can anybody spare some change?" He isn't clean and he doesn't look like a worthwhile cause. He's no matinee idol with a smooth pitch. He doesn't look like a good investment. He is often openly mocked and taunted but that doesn't stop him. With a voice that makes babies cry, he belts out, "Can anybody spare some change?" to whatever crowd he happens on.
Tough work if you can get it. Even tougher if you can be successful. The Spare Change Guy gets by, whatever that means. He is downtown haunting public places and T stations every day, surviving on whatever handouts he collects. They say the meek will inherit the Earth. I shudder to think of the Spare Change Guy replacing Mayor Mennino but there is a place for him in my city. Most of Boston's streets are pretty but all of them can be pretty mean.
I wasn't born as ugly as some people, nor as disadvantaged. I do what I can to be comfortable, relying on the gifts God gave me to maximize returns. Doesn't everyone? Am I any better than this man? In the end, we are both part of this moment in Boston. In the end we will both be food for the worms and fodder for Heaven.