I knew I recognized him but didn't remember our previous encounter until we had gotten into the Cheesecake Factory. Marc is as boisterous, good humored and thankful as I remember from when we walked to the McDonald's together last month.
When I asked him if I could buy him dinner this evening he immediately suggested McDonald's again, he evidently likes that place so much I don't know why he doesn't stay closer to one! Since he was standing outside the Cheesecake Factory I suggested that we could just go there and he quickly affirmed that as a good suggestion. We went in and the wait staff was polite and respectful, if initially a little hesitant. Unfortunately Marc insisted that all he wanted was a slice of Reese's Peanut Butter Cheesecake and a coffee. All I accomplished by trying to convince him to get something for dinner was to end up getting him two slices of cake instead of just one. He was extremely excited and kept telling me just how much he loves cake, which kept a smile on my face.
Just like last time, he kept asking if I had any cash or change but all I had were a couple of old bus tickets which he happily accepted. I almost want to say that he seems greedy for anything anybody will give him, it's a strange and inappropriate association, and I can't quite explain how I mean it, but that's just the feeling I got talking with him.
It was fun to see Marc again, he remembered our trip to McDonald's and was grateful for the help, almost to excess. I will look forward to running into him again...though I'm not sure how much good it does him to get a couple slices of cake for dinner, but you can't argue with the happiness factor ;)
In other news, I spent last night at a fundraiser for Street Soccer Seattle. They use "Soccer for Social Change" and seem to have a lot of fun with it. Roger Levesque, Lamar Neagle and Brian Meredith were there signing autographs, they had indoor games going all evening, other small soccer related games, a raffle and a silent auction, in which I scored a signed pic of Mr. Steve Zakuani himself!
It was a great evening and I hope it was a success as they are trying to send their Seattle team to DC for the championships this year. Street Soccer Seattle has a team of homeless youth that plays soccer in a league with other homeless teams, as well as pickup games within their communities. It's a great way to build confidence, trust and teamwork in many young folks who've likely never experienced these most basic parts of the human existence. From what I can see, they love every minute of the soccer and the attention.
I've only made it out to one of the pickup games prior to this fundraiser but I'm really looking forward to many more. Check out their website: http://streetsoccerseattle.org/ and send 'em a donation if you have the means because its a great organization. Even though it, admittedly, isn't a stand alone solution to homelessness, it's certainly a clever treatment of some of the tragic effects homelessness can have on these young people.
I'll leave updates about Morning Watch until next time. If you're enjoying my blog, please feel free to follow it and share it with friends. Thanks for reading!