Red Light Opportunity

Red Light Opportunity

Shuffling along the sidewalk with no place to​ go neither time to​ be of​ a​ concern, I was trying to​ think of​ what to​ do today. Making my way slowly down this avenue of​ congress of​ this capital city I already had a​ free meal at​ the eleven o’clock serving. as​ I strolled under the tall buildings casting shadows across the workers of​ commerce scurrying their way between the doors of​ the high structures I remembered what day of​ the week it​ was. Today was the day I could give plasma; I could spend the rest of​ the afternoon at​ the plasma center. Then I could look forward for an​ evening restaurant hot meal plus some change leftover for some tailor made cigarettes. a​ night at​ the mission could top it​ off for some comfortable sleep and a​ change of​ clothes tomorrow morning for my apparel was getting a​ bit dusty from a​ three day wear. My latest sleeping quarters under the Fourth street Bridge the past few nights left me a​ bit on the musty side. I had purpose for the day.

The street was usually busy this midday hour and today no different, I had to​ dodge between the suits of​ trade wear, trying to​ keep on the outside of​ the crowd. By the street’s end the crowd mostly had thinned ducking into other doors and I stopped at​ the crosswalk to​ wait for the light. Now it​ was either east or​ a​ west direction, directly across the street stood the gates of​ the capitol building. I had to​ head west a​ few blocks before turning north for seventeen more blocks to​ get to​ the plasma center. I started to​ get hungry thinking of​ a​ restaurant meal; the soup line after a​ few days kind of​ shrinks the stomach. a​ couple of​ puffed up looking fellows decked out in​ expensive attire also were paused awaiting the light. They took no note of​ my presence, after all I was just a​ street person and they were likely legislators coming from the high dollar restaurant on the corner heading back to​ business as​ usual. Something kind of​ clicked.

“Excuse me,” I said, “You know over half this capital town work for the state or​ federal or​ county or​ city and none of​ these positions hardly make any money of​ their own. All they do is​ drain the average workers paycheck, so possibly, do you think that maybe it’s time to​ downsize a​ bit like the corporates and be responsive to​ the actual needs of​ the working class which are actually most of​ your constituents?”

They ignored any sound coming from my person.

“Or perhaps,” I continued a​ little louder, “You can save some money by being more efficient in​ operations. Like general program funding, you could handle each case individually and wise up to​ the fraud that costs more than actual need.”

They shifted in​ movement, I could see a​ bit of​ uneasiness as​ they lingered.

“Maybe,” I gestured a​ bit sarcastically, “Rethink and cut half of​ these government workers that achieve no practical purpose except to​ spread favors. Also all of​ those many building projects just for your own wants, like those millions spent on that gym that only you and your staff gets to​ use freely and you know I wish I had your kind of​ free medical when I was working. Then there are those high price bids and contractors overcharging for every little piece, do you think you could put a​ check on kickbacks and corruption and save money by being practical as​ if​ this was your money you throw around? Oh, yeah, the new prescription laws you’re about to​ overcharge the elderly under that blanket of​ the drug companies, do you think you can simplify and make some rates as​ needed that might actually really care for the elderly instead?” I was kind of​ loud on that one.

The light changed and they bolted for the other side, they moved so fast I had to​ run to​ keep up with them.

“How about this!” I was kind of​ yelling now, frothing a​ bit, getting a​ little excited, “I use to​ have a​ job and you took more than a​ third out for your taxes, can you even imagine the burden that put on me? Plus all the sales tax, gas tax, property tax, service fees; I was probably paying way over half of​ what I made just to​ appease your appetite! You know what I mean?”

They had made it​ through the gates of​ the fence surrounding the capital, kicking up pebbles from the driveway as​ they ran toward the massive doors of​ the building. I ceased and stood my ground at​ the entrance, somehow survival kicking in​ and halting my process.

“You know when you do try to​ save money,” I screamed after them, “You cut off from the bottom instead of​ the top! Now just working folks are out of​ luck!”

They were running out of​ range and I was getting hoarse. Then I noticed a​ golf cart at​ a​ fast crawl speeding its way toward me, filled with a​ couple of​ security personnel. I fled the scene, thinking once past the border of​ this walled fortress they would cease the chase. I still had time to​ make it​ to​ the center and give plasma.

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