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March 4, 2014 | Robin Kencel

Cold, Broke and Miserable


Not the actual homeless gentleman, of course (that would be so rude)

I can’t get the image out of my head. Broadway and 65th this past Saturday night. On one side of the street, 14 police cars roaring down the street, stopping short at Lincoln Center and lined up to whisk Mayor DeBlasio out of the theatre. On the other side of the street, a young man, wrapped in soiled blankets and torn contractor garbage bags holding the usual cardboard sign. Four arresting words: COLD, BROKE AND MISERABLE

His face was resigned with a wear that was many years beyond his age.  

The temptation to feel better by wondering why he wasn’t taking advantage of the city’s social welfare system and any of the shelters that are made available in NYC did not take away the chill of the words. They were not a complaint. They did not appeal to sympathy or guilt. They shared what he felt like.

No words about the real estate market today. No tips or advice. Just a reflection on the basic need for shelter and a prayer, to whomever you pray to, for that young man and all the homeless.

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