“8 Dollars a shoe plus a nice tip”
So now that I have calmed down a bit, here is the story. So Russ and I were walking to our hotel from an awesome dinner. Now we had about a 2 mile hike to this resteraunt so we were pretty tired upon our return. We get about two blocks from our hotel when a young black man probably 24 or 25 approaches me. He says, “excuse me sir excuse me.” Now having gone to school in Detroit and being no stranger to homeless people the best thing to do if you plan on not giving them anything is to just ignore them and keep walking. Apparently this young entrepreneur had seen this technique before. He continues to follow me. He keeps talking to me as I walk. He keeps telling me to hold up and hear him out. Suddenly as if being struck by an ion bean from a Tie fighter, I began to slow down. At which point the young man pulls a white water bottle and squirts white goop on my shoe. I look down in confusion. The man then kneels down and says sir I just want to show you something. I start to walk away and the man gets upset and starts to yell at me saying, “I’m not going to hurt you. I just want to show you something!” I again start to walk. He gets even angrier and begins to yell at me. “Sir I am not going to hurt you. I’m a entrepreneur and this is how I make my money!” So I freeze because I don’t know what to do. I want to run but I don’t know if this guy will shoot me or what. I look at Russ and he is being approached by another man. Now the young man kneeling at my feet begins to wipe off my shoe. He tells me that I need to take care of my shoes and this substance being polished away is just the thing I need like it or not. So he finishes with my right shoe and I again try to walk away. He again gets angry telling me he wants to do the other shoe and that he is not going to hurt me. So now I am standing there completely blown away about what is going on. After several attempts at walking away and the young man continuing to get more and more belligerent, he spits out “don’t worry sir it’s only 8 dollars a shoe plus a nice tip.” At this point I am like WHAT? WHAT DID YOU JUST SAY? He says again, “just 8 dollars a shoes plus a nice tip.” Now I had planned to give him a little something for his trouble but he said that he just wanted to show me something. Now he was demanding payment. Well I pulled out my wallet as he was buffing the left shoe and started digging for something small. Thinking if I just throw him a 5 and run he may not kill me. Well unfortunately all I had was a $20. By my confused face the young man knew I didn’t have anything small so he cheerfully said, “don’t worry sir I can make change.” At this point I just wanted to run away like a little girl. I handed the young man a $20 and he said, “thank you so much sir” and ran away. I was left there feeling like I had just been mugged…but I wasn’t mugged. I felt abused. I felt used. I felt like I wanted my mommy. I began my trek back the two remaining blocks to my hotel. Russell smiling ear to ear at my dismay and my head hung in shame. So let me ask you this. Judging by the picture above, how do my shoes looks? By the way my dinner was only $20 bucks that night. My mother told me to cheer up, I could’ve entertained an Angel. I told her I doubt an Angel would charge 20 bucks a shoe plus a nice tip!