Monday, March 29, 2010

Fountain, 2010

This picture's other subject is taking a break from panhandling to check his email. This is the second time I've been surprised by technology's reach down the economic ladder in America's larger cities. In January, in Los Angeles, I stopped at a Starbucks on the way back from making Sleeper and, not really paying attention to where I was going, almost stepped on a guy cozied up to a lamppost and ringed by a sandbag fortress of junk-filled boxes and bags. His big broken hands were making complex pecking gestures that puzzled me, until I realized that he was using the coffeehouse's free Wi-Fi to surf the net on his iPhone. Scenes like these are a valuable corrective to the prevailing notion that people below one's own rung on the economic ladder just can't "get with the times."

(For the record, I don't own a cell phone, iPhone, or personal communications device of any kind, and can barely work the camera app on L.'s old pink Blackberry)

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