RE "Part 1," see my April 5 post below RE two homeless guys "accosting" me as if I were a black gypsy or something! :)
Part 2: Today, at the same corner where I met the earlier guys. It was about 7:15 am, I was standing there chatting with a co-worker who was also waiting for the company bus. And I was getting in my last cigarette before the hour-long bus-ride when a street-guy appeared and asked me for a cig.
"That'll be $10," I said as I handed him one. "You know prices just went up." (Seriously -- a pack now costs around $7 up here.)
[Ha-ha at the joke, etc. Then he looked at the cig, approved of it being a Marlboro:] "Just like John Wayne."
"Yeah," I said, "but look what happened to him. He died of cancer."
"He did not."
"He did too!"
"He did not!"
"No, for real, he died of cancer."
"He did not die of cancer."
"I swear to you he died of cancer!"
"Did not. Anyway, what's your name? I'm Marco." [we shake hands]
"Hi, Marco. I'm Stephanie. And he really did die of cancer. I'm going to look it up online. Be here tomorrow and I'll show you the proof!"
"I'll be here! Thanks!" [Marco walks off pleasantly]
OK, it'll be funny if he really does turn up in the same spot again. My co-worker joked that it might turn into the "stray kitten syndrome," with the guy showing up at the same time every day since I'd "fed" him a cigarette once! :) And, darn it, I don't have proof of the cause of John Wayne's demise to give him, since my printer's broken. Here's a site, though, that proves it...dammit, Marco!
John Wayne Cancer Institute
p.s. A sidenote: I feel terrible, but after I shook hands with Marco, whose hands WERE really filthy-looking, I worried aloud about germs. Luckily my co-worker actually had some hand-sanitizer with him. I'd of course heard of such a product before, but I'd never used it and had to have the process explained to me... It really was miraculously quick-drying and non-harsh on the skin! Apologies to Marco for doubting his cleanliness! (But wait... He doubted my knowledge of John Wayne. So we're even.)