THE HOBO HANDBOOK: MEMOIRS OF A HOMELESS POET IN NEW YORK
By Daniel Canada c.2010
PERSONALITIES OF THE HOMELESS (Continues)
TIGER LADY is not like Tony the Tiger from your favorite frosted flakes commercial. She's more like Tanya the Tiger from hell, visiting you at your local Starbucks coffee dive.
You got to see this lady!
She wears skin-tight tiger design pants. I can only imagine how she actually got them on. “Tiger Lady” likes to struts her stuff. Well, it's not like she couldn't use a few pounds. What is more, her mug does leaves a lot to be desired. Nevertheless, that doesn't discourage her from prancing about in her skin-tight, tiger design, pants to the morning soup lines, at the Franciscan Friars.
She always skips the line of tired, hungry, and grumpy "Skeksies," who've been irascibly waiting all morning long to cop a bag of breakfast. She's got it like that. Or as least she thinks she does. You'll see her strutting up to the front of the line, with a super-sized cup of Dunkin Donuts or Starbucks coffee in hand, greeting "Skeksys" aloud as she passes by, like a politician hankering for votes before election night.
Tiger Lady's a riot!
When she talks, she's always loud and boisterous. I figure when you look like “Tiger Lady,” you better be loud, if you want to get noticed. Otherwise, nobody's going to take the extra effort to make you out, baby. But Tiger Lady's got the attention market cornered.
She's a pro.
However, like Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, she turns into an outright bitch after midnight. Maybe it's the moon. Maybe its hormones raging. I don't know, but if you happen to come across “Tiger Lady” sitting in the Penn Station Starbucks after nightfall, stay the hell away from her! She'll verbally rip you from rim to limb, boy-O, if you catch her sight the wrong way. She also doesn't have a problem using ethnically incorrect verbiage.
Yeah, “Tiger Lady” will rant and rave, frothing at the mouth until she tires herself out, and have to pause to recharge her over drained mental batteries.
Whew! What a much needed break for all of us.
Strange thing about this story is she didn't exactly start out that way. When I first ran into “Tiger Lady” she was the nicest, sweetest, pleasantly greeting, tight-pants, wearing, wanna be-Hoochey-Mama, in town; which was quite likeable, to be honest.
The shit time in the streets can do to person is phenomenal.
One thing I failed to mention is that “Tiger Lady” doesn't get much sleep. All the time invested in Starbucks and Dunkin donuts, draining down hazardous levels of caffeine, and at the morning soup lines, doesn't leave much time for precious sleep.
No wonder she's a basket case.
Furthermore this goes for a lot of homeless people. Who might see the likes of them roaming the width a breath of the city way after darkness has descended upon the town, as if they were Ponce De Leon, on a quest to find the fountain of youth in some abandoned alleyway.
You see, on the street sleep is golden. Like with food, without it you're not going to make it very far. I've provided ideas about what you can do in regards to sleep, and it behooves you to utilize it, if you're out here.
Drinking coffee's fine, but make sure you cop some zee's along the way, anyway you can, or you might find yourself actually being able to understand the gobble-de-gook Tiger Lady's spewing in her daily rantings.
And that won't be a good thing, my precious.
(To be continued...)