Buddhahollah: My Man Jones

Boy, did I need this guy today:

I’ve been documenting my ridiculous Monday on Facebook today, and it’s been a lulu, starting with an earthquake jolting me awake to an overprivileged Berkeley mother asking me to move in the coffeeshop when I coughed twice because she thought I might be sick (I was here first, cunt—take your fucking neurotic ass elsewhere) to a jury summons to our health insurance coverer denying my mammogram to our next-door neighbors having to put their sweet dog to sleep.

So I’ve been half-jokingly/half-seriously whine-documenting my day on Facebook in a SERIOUSLY, MONDAY?!?! kind of way. But in all honestly, I have been feeling a little sorry for myself today.

And then I headed down to our bar, which is in what can be arguably be called “a rough neighborhood” by even the most charitable standards. And I ran into Jones.

Jones. My man, Jones

This guy. He’s been a fixture on Telegraph Ave. for so long that many refer to him as the Mayor of Telegraph. He’s earned the title, that’s for sure. He’s the eyes and ears of our stretch of the block. Nothing happens without Jones knowing about it. He keeps his nose clean, but that’s not to say he’s not tapped in to the seedy underbelly of the area. If someplace gets hit, you can be sure he knows whose fingers are in the mix.

Jones lost the use of his legs in Vietnam. He also lost a brother there. I can’t imagine his country has treated him particularly well in the decades since, but there isn’t a shred of bitterness hanging on him. The guy always has a smile on his face, and every time I see him—every goddamn time—I say “Yo Jones, how you doing?!” And his answer is always an unfailing “Hey! I woke up today! It’s better than the alternative!”

I can’t imagine anything in this guy’s life has been a cakewalk, but here he is, always rolling up on the scene with a big grin on his face and a big ol’ hug for me, making me feel like I’m the queen of his world.

Jesus, Jones. You really know how to make a girl put her day into some perspective. For that I thank you.