The question comes up a lot. What has happened to all of New York's
truth will shock you. The economy is strong and that
is part of the answer. But it's not strong enough to solve social
in a single rebound. I took my gumshoes out of their holster
and head out
to 42nd St. What I found there will shock you. The Los
Manhattan is in full swing. The Lion King is a theme park and children
wearing knickers are playing stickball in the street again. I couldn't
my eyes. It was shocking.
I wanted to see a peep show and buy some junk to unwind and think
about this transformation. I was shocked to find out that the peep
and the drug guys were gone. The store fronts were shut and the buildings
themselves were either demolished or moved down the block to confuse
me. I was confused but I was determined to get to the bottom of it.
halfway down the block between 7th and 8th and watched for clues.
were the homeless, the crack guys, the peep shows and the pros? Where
in the hell were the homeless screamers:
Those guys with Tourettes
Syndrome who used to shout bad
words at me as I scored my drugs and
watched my peep shows? They used to be everywhere.
I looked around and saw the happy kids playing in the street and the friendly
animals from The Lion King grazing in the vacant lots next to the theater.
spite of my shock at seeing these animals I had to smile. They
singing and grazing and I smiled in spite of myself. Maybe
the lions ate the
homeless people and scared away the pushers and hookers. I'm here
tell you that I almost bought that Brooklyn Bridge till I heard a Tourettes
coming down the street, then another and another and another. It
epidemic. I turned in the direction of the invectives and the
truth hit me right
between the eyes.
Apparently, the homeless screamers were issued a nice suit of clothes and
a cell phone. They looked like business people. Ingenious.
As I walked
home from Times Square that day, the city's diabolical plan
Wherever I turned I saw another well-dressed poor soul
with a cell phone
carrying on like a maniac. Some of them were given nice cars too.
almost had me fooled.
I put my gumshoes back in their holster and poured myself a shot of
something strong and French. I poured some of it on a knife
and stuck it in
the wall outlet and I was shocked. I called the mayor's office
and ranted to
them how I intended to blow the whistle on their whole homeless scam.
was hollering at their answering machine. The recorded voice played it
and didn't let on: they just took my name, number,
inseam and jacket size and
blew smoke up my skirt about how important my call was to them.
To tell the
truth, the lady who recorded the message had a nice accent and I felt calmer
than I'd expected. A little too calm. Serene.
Thusly, I settled down in front of the TV and smiled contentedly at it
6 1/2 hours. And I suggest you do the same; and stop worrying
happened to the homeless. The homeless aren't worried about
happened to you. The homeless aren't worried about anything anymore.
There are no more homeless. And the screamers were all
are living in New Jersey. And everyone's doing just fine.