I had just moved to the Netherlands after I found that I had crashed dramatically in the Caribbean. Broke, unemployed, depressed and shit. Down. Looking for back up.
I was at De Dam in Amsterdam with my son. No matter what, I had a little boy to entertain, so we were doing the broke tourist thing. He didn’t know better anyway.
Then he saw one of those ugly living statues things and he wanted to take a picture with it. I think I had one euro and some change left on me.
I gestured at the dude and placed all my money on his little table. I don’t know why I didn’t talk to him; maybe I figured statues don’t talk.
Anyway; I could see his eyes through the little holes in the mask, they were glaring at me with disgust and calling me a broke n.gg.h bitch and saying “no go away with your cheap ass. I don’t stand here for that small change!” He shook his head to go along with it.
My eyes begged back at him “please givvadadabreak”, but he couldn’t “givvashit”.
He stepped off his little pedestal, walked to the table, picked up the coins I could pay him and gave them back to me. Then he waved me off like a horse would shoo a little annoying shit-fly away with his tail.
I never felt more depressed in my life. I had traveled all over the world, but in my few months of downtime I was wordlessly bitch slapped by this obviously unambitious dude who makes his living just standing around.
When you’re down, the only way to go is up. And when you’re up, help somebody else up. There’ll be a lot of opportunities for that in the coming days. Don’t be a dick.
I’m sure he’s still standing there, up on that pedestal, probably still looking down on people, being an immobile dick behind a mask.
As for me … Lil Wayne dropped my theme song a few years later. I had never been a wordless dick to anyone, so unlike him, I had the ambition and places to go, plus people willing to help me back up. And I’m paying it forward.