Yesterday, within the space of an hour, I saw one man defecate at a rail stop & another shoot drugs into his upper arm. Later in the day, I watched a fellow bus passenger disembark & then vomit all over the pavement. Yet later still, while jogging around Lake Merced, I spied three big slabs of butchered meat by the side of the road. I couldn't recognize the cuts. -massive racks of ribs? A Red Tailed hawk was perched atop one of the slabs, tearing off pieces with its beak. A crow stood off in the distance presumably waiting for the hawk to fly off. All I needed was to then have seen someone lose their shit in the supermarket at a checker & I would have won San Francisco Bingo!.
The man who defecated at the rail stop, as if that weren't surreal enough, then pulled out a mobile phone from his coat pocket, dialed & began talking. He appeared to be having a rousing conversation with someone while his buttocks was exposed. It was a strange sight, indeed.
Given that the human waste was on a city rail platform, I sent a message to the SF municiple rail office letting them know about it. The person with whom I communicated stated that they'd have the waste cleaned up within a short period of time. I certainly hope so. Mostly, nothing gets down with much urgency around this city, but, hopefully, this matter--no pun intended--was taken care of quickly.
By the time I left the station, the man had begun urinating with phone still in hand. I made my way downtown. Walking from Market St. to SoMa, I took a short cut down an alley named for Civil War soldier and writer Ambrose Bierce. That was where I saw the man shooting up. He seemed most concerned with his hit & not at all with me. I could see blood being drawn into the needle as I walked past him. I hoped he wouldn't OD as he was all alone in the alley. Calling the police in this instance, doesn't do any good. They'll only respond, if someone is actually overdosing.
There is constant talk of how social services in SF aren't able to support the seemingly ever-swelling no. of marginalized people on our streets. I don't know what the solution is, but I do know that having public restrooms in all areas of town would be a help. As it now stands, areas of town where there are high rates of vagrancy, like in the Haight and areas along Mission St., are equipped with more permanent-looking porta-potties. These toilets are manned by clean-up staff. I can't help but think that having staffed toilets must help cut down on any funny business. Folk get in and get out without much fuss.
I volunteered at the Women's March today in downtown SF. Our procession moved from Civic Center to Justin Herman Plaza. -less of a Bingo! situation, thankfully.