He looks like some of the folks — especially that nose. I also like the Minnie-Pearl-esque tag on the hat.
Hard to tell, but that tag is actually a small mirror. I think this guy, Ken, is actually homeless, either a hobo or a bindlestiff (I forget the distinctions) or something along those lines; he had three grocery sacks of (I assume) personal belongings tied to a walking stick stowed at the back of the room, and while you can’t see it from this angle his hair was molded in the back into a giant dreadlock in the shape of a cornucopia. He was plenty clean, but probably doesn’t get a chance to take a full shower much. Of course, this is all an educated guess on my part as it seemed rude to ask.
I’ve no doubt the mirror is pure pragmatic self-defense. He seemed cheerful and reasonably intelligent; I don’t know why he’s living rough, but obviously it’s a choice he’s made and made peace with for quite a long time.
He did remind me of folks of my own – specifically, my uncle who lived the wild life in Alaska. He of the log cabin and broken leg. Maybe not so much in looks, but in manner.
I always think of bindlestiff as an migrant worker, like George and Lennie, but I don’t know if that’s correct.
That’s interesting about the mirror. I did assume it wasn’t a price tag, and it occurred to me that it looked a lot like a bike helmet mirror. I couldn’t get that to square with the rest of him, but now it makes sense.
Neat expression, like he’s ready to tell you something, if he can just decide whether you’re trustworthy. He’s got a story to tell, and wears some of it on in his posture and face.
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