Can Man: NOT a Mother’s Day Tale.

David never leaves the apartment without normal sane looking clothes on.  If he has to run the recycling down to the recycling/laundry room, he puts on jeans, a suitable t-shirt, and a hat to cover any potential hat hair.  I don’t know who he thinks he’s going to see down there.  I, on the other hand, wear whatever I have on at the time to take out the trash, take the recycling down, and do laundry.  My plan is to avoid eye contact with any individual I may come across.  That way, if I see them at a later time when I’m not looking mental, they will have no idea that I’m that same girl that was wearing a potato sack or whatever.  The building probably talks about “that homely girl” a lot.  I don’t mind.

On Sunday, I prefer to wake up at the crack of dawn and get my laundry started.  If you get to the building laundry room early enough, you can get your hands on ALL of the machines!  It’s SUCH a luxury.  This being Sunday, I rolled out of bed and trudged down the stairs with my overflowing basket.  I’ll take a moment to give you a visual:

– Giant Alpha Phi sweatshirt circa freshman year of college.

– Cropped semi see through pajama pants with actual dogs and the WORD dog all over them.  For some reason these pants are size XL.  I have no idea how I acquired them.  They also have grease stains all over them because I once cleaned my bike while wearing them.

– Fuzzy slippers

– Thick black framed Roy Orbison glasses.

– A wild mane of hair that was wet when I went to sleep… you can only imagine.

When I got to the bottom of the stairs I heard a man cough.  As usual, I put my head down and power walked the rest of the way to the laundry room.  For reasons unknown to me, the laundry room was a wreck.  The recycling bins were all swung open and there were fliers and cardboard boxes everywhere.  I certainly didn’t care enough to pick any of it up, but I was suspicious.

After my twenty-seven loads of laundry were all started, I began my journey back to my apartment.  Then, I heard another cough.  Why the hell was there a tenant sitting in the hall coughing?  Was he trying to get my attention?  Was it his form of the “come and get it” whistle?  Maybe he liked skinny girls in huge mismatched pajamas?  Whatever his motive, I decided to look up from the ground.  There, sitting in MY hallway, was a SE Portland celebrity… CAN MAN!

Can man is kind of like Mickey Mouse at Disney World.  There are like twenty of him.  Can Man walks around the neighborhood with his shopping cart collecting cans and giving smiles and waves to all of the residents.  He’s nice and friendly, but NEVER, under any circumstances, touch. his. CART!

I often wonder where Can Man goes at night.  Once he slept in our dumpster and we accidentally threw carved pumpkins on him.  Last night, I guess he decided to sleep over at our place.  It’s an HONOR, Can Man.

Aside from collecting cans, I suspect that Can Man recreationally partakes in drugs and alcohol.  He was basically sleeping sitting up at the back entrance of the building.  He was, of course, surrounded by cans.  I thought about taking matters into my own hands, but what if Can Man wasn’t the gentleman that I had thought he was?  So, I called non-emergency 911.

The lady on the phone knew all of the right questions to ask.  It’s as though she hears about these situations a million times a day.  Is he moving?  Is he sleeping?  Does he seem intoxicated?  Is he in any way threatening?  Are you sure he doesn’t live there?  I informed her that he was indeed moving but was asleep.  One can only assume that he was intoxicated based on his ability to sleep through me staring 500 loads of laundry.  I also informed her that I did not suspect he lived in my building based on his large collection of bagged cans and shopping cart outside the door.  I hope she didn’t think I was too judgy….

Long story short, the police came wearing rubber gloves and kindly asked him to leave.  One might have expected them to do something more, but they merely asked him to keep moving.  Celebrities always seem to get special treatment…

Later on today I’m going to run an impromptu class for my fellow residents on how to completely close doors so trespassers don’t get in.

Ah, the perks of livin’ in the big city…

Peace, love, and patchouli

Portland Pollyanna

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One Response to Can Man: NOT a Mother’s Day Tale.

  1. At App State we had a guy named Jeremiah who had a single massive dread lock and he would sell hand-written psychedelic stories for $2 each or 2 for $5 (thought he was sly on that one). His dread lock defied physics: it started out pretty thick near his scalp, then would narrow down to the size of a shoelace, the would get thick again to the size of a tennis ball)

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