You’ve all heard phrases like “Nothing worth having is free” and “There’s no such thing as a free lunch.” Yesterday the Romgi and I reaffirmed the validity of both statements.
Denny’s was offering free Grand Slams from 6am-2pm, so instead of going before work (which we considered, but decided against since I was still on morphine and hadn’t really slept all night), the Romgi took a long lunch so we could stand in line and get our free food. We got to the Provo Denny’s about 11:15, and the line was wrapped around the building. Lots of high school students, older folks, the typical Denny’s crowd. Right in front of us was a woman who appeared to be the director of a homeless shelter, along with several of her…tenants? Shelterites?
Everything was fine until we rounded one corner and another homeless man cut in front of us to join the group ahead. I feel very judgmental and un-Christian for being creeped out by him, but he was a creepy man. I don’t mean his appearance – which was just your run-of-the-mill homeless look – but the fact that he kept turning around and staring at me, swaying from side to side.
Eventually (about 5 minutes later) I became so disconcerted that I had the Romgi turn to face me and be a barricade of sorts between me and the homeless man (the homeless man and I?). This was actually less effective since then the guy started lurking behind the Romgi’s back trying to look over the Romgi’s shoulder at me. When you get the feeling that someone is not quite mentally stable, having them lurk to look at you is not really fun.
I tried to carry on conversation with the Romgi about anything I could possibly think of, including repeating things we’d already talked about, so that I could stay occupied and hopefully not have to talk to the homeless man. It only worked for so long.
At first I didn’t catch what he said – although he was speaking loudly – so I said, “I’m sorry, what?”
“What’s your child’s name?” he repeated.
I figured that any name I said would just prolong the conversation, so I said we haven’t picked a name yet (sort of a lie. We’re pretty sure that we’ll do Evan, but no guarantees until we see the Bwun). To which the homeless man replied,
“My name is right here,” unzipping his jacket to reveal a bright orange t-shirt that said something like ‘Iswalleh + Yonica.’
We just sort of mumbled a reply. What else were we supposed to do? After another minute of lurking, he meandered off to stare at the driver of a minivan that was waiting to leave the parking lot. By the time he came back the Romgi and I decided we would just take the Grand Slam vouchers that were being handed out so we could come back later in the week – without having to wait in line.
So for the low price of an hour and a half in line and a conversation with a creepy homeless man, the Romgi and I each get a free Grand Slam sometime soon.
I’m still deciding!