Just the other day, I was thinking of what I wanted to eat.
And, to my unfortunate luck, both the Gordita Lady and the Tostada Lady were not available for some reason.
They were both literally my go to options that I was feeling for.
But they seemed to be gone for whatever reason.
So I ultimately decide “fuck it, why not a pizza?”
I grab some money and keys and head for the door late at night at around 9 PM.
Given the time, I knew the Little Ceasers in the neighborhood just above me was going close in less than an hour.
Once inside the metro, I buy a ticket and walk down the stairs of Metro CU.
To my luck, the train was already parked so no need to time too long to get going.
And, to my luck even greater, I saw a dude get off his seat and walk down his part of the train for another seat.
He thankfully did that because he was occupying the seat in the back that I like to sit at because it’s not next to anyone else and more relaxing to not be shoulder to shoulder with another stranger.
So, as I hurry down the stairs to make sure I catch the train just fine, I steal the seat that he gave up.
Give it another minute or two and the train gets going.
Now I’m in Metro Copilco.
Outside, I walk over to the Little Ceasers.
I offer the lady a 500 peso (25 dollar note).
She looks at me with a shit eating grin and goes “uhhh, you don’t have anything smaller?”
Bitch, it’s only 25 bucks and your business is a multimillion dollar pizza chain. You can afford to break a 25
I shake my head and go “no creo.”
She looks at her cash register and goes “sorry, I don’t think I have change.”
Then she looks up behind her at the screen above and goes “well, I do if you buy the pepperoni and cheese mix pizza.”
Which is some option that Little Ceasers has where half of the pizza is extra pepperoni and the other half is like cheese pizza or whatever.
Its cost? Only like 99 pesos.
When the pepperoni pizza (complete pepperoni without a cheese only side) was 89 pesos.
A difference of 50 cents.
“So wait – you’re telling me that you got change for my 25 bucks only if I spend 50 cents more? Fuck off!”
At any rate, I see the game for what it is.
She’s playing games with me and, if I’m being honest, I’m playing games with her.
I do a “hmmm, wait, let me check if I got something else.”
Then I pull out a 200 peso bill (10 bucks).
“Ah, ok!” she says.
We make the transaction.
She gives me the pizza.
Life goes on.
As I wrote here, Little Ceasers is no stranger to fuckery like this.
It’s been my experience, like I wrote in that article just cited, where they often tell you “sorry! No pepperoni pizza available! You must wait 30 minutes to make a new one!”
Then you say “that’s fine” and they grudgingly take your money and immediately pull out a pepperoni pizza in 5 seconds from behind even though they just told you they got none available.
I’m pretty confident that they use the cheap 4.5 USD pepperoni pizza as a way to entice people to come in but, given their very low profit margins on something so cheap, they must be incentivized by the business to sell something better.
Anyway, I’m no stranger to the fuckery of Little Ceasers.
I got a PhD in understanding their tactics.
With pizza in hand anyhow, I walk out and head back to the metro to get home.
Along the way, I notice a young man looking seemingly cold and homeless.
He’s laying down against a wall all by himself with a dog on the ground.
At first, I ignore him sitting there and keep on walking.
But then, for a split second, I think “fuck it. I don’t feel too hungry and can afford him a slice.”
Whenever I buy a Little Ceasers, I try to divide it into two meals (4 slices per meal) but I honestly wasn’t that hungry and could be fine with just 3 slices that night.
At any rate, the dude obviously has no family to care for him or else he wouldn’t be there.
Looking very homeless and seemingly trying to sleep in the cold.
But, from the small distance, it looked like he was awake petting his dog (at least by what my poorer eyesight could tell).
So I walked on over.
“Hola, buenas noches. Quieres una pizza?” I asked him.
He looks up and says excitingly “si!”
I open up the box and kneel down and say “take a piece.”
He grabs a slice.
“Como se llama el perro?” i asked him.
“Coco” he said.
Without really knowing what else to say or what other small talk to make, I tell the dude “buenas noches” again and leave him be with his dog.
And that was it.
Back home, had my pizza and watched this movie here.
The Sight of Poverty in Latin America
Over enough time in Latin America, the sight of poverty is no longer as worthy of discussion to be fair.
We all get normalized to it to a degree.
But, being honest, I think the sight of this dude’s dog probably hit the feels even more than just seeing him.
Granted, there was a thought in my head in which it hit me: “that could be me.”
And while I’m at no risk of being homeless right now and have no understanding for why he is homeless, we are still both young men.
Initially over a few years ago, I felt less sympathy for young men who are homeless in Mexico City.
You see so many homeless people here and some do get more sympathy points than others.
Be it the old grandpa who should be retired standing in the train with a crane to hold himself up as he sings along to a song asking for change.
The sight of a young girl – who couldn’t have been older than 9 – laying face down onto the cement on a hot, sunny day all by herself by Metro Insurgentes.
Or perhaps seeing a young child seemingly crying late at night all by herself at 2 AM in the walk that is between Garibaldi Plaza and Garibaldi Metro where they have some nice tacos outside that spot.
Maybe one of those women carrying children that hits the feels also?
Obviously, to some degree, you feel less sympathy perhaps for a young man because we tend to see young men as being able to carry themselves.
He’s young, full of testosterone and should be able to take on the world.
Still, to be fair to him, we don’t know how he got there with his dog.
And, as of recently over the last year, I’ve felt more sympathy for the sight of the young man out alone in this world with seemingly nobody and living on the streets.
It really does hit me as a realization that “it could be me someday.”
Seeing someone who is like you.
A young male.
And, of course as I said before, having a dog with you living on the streets pulls the heart strings even more.
So it’s a contrast to some degree.
On almost every day of the year, the sight of a homeless person doesn’t impact me whatsoever.
You get normalized to it.
But, once in a blue moon (perhaps when you’ve had enough rum especially), the sight of a homeless person hits the feels stronger than normal.
Over the last year, I’ve had more than my fair share of rum and vodka and the feels have been hit harder than Rocky Balboa’s face.
Especially when a poor dog is involved!
So I’ve been, on several occasions now, offering the occasional slice of pizza to these folks from time to time.
Especially if it’s a young man.
At any rate, life goes on.
You can’t let it occupy your head for too long or it really can get depressing.
Compared to any other city I’ve been to, Mexico City really is one of the worst for when it comes to the amount of homeless folks I’ve seen.
Of course, in my time here over the years, I’ve seen cops kicking these folks in the head to tell them to move and seen government officials wasting money on retard projects like this here instead of helping them.
Mexico City Metro Penis Seat
At any rate, while I find it equally cringe whenever you see someone try to be “a savior” for these folks (be it Mexicans or foreigners), I can get why foreigners especially can find this aspect to life down here troubling.
Which isn’t to say that poverty doesn’t exist in the US but, compared to where I’m from, it’s MUCH more in your face.
Like I said, you get normalized and it doesn’t bother you most days of the year but you do have that one special day out of the year where a particular image – that of a young man with his dog sleeping in the cold or a 9 year old girl laying face down on the hot cement under the sun – that hits harder than normal.
But, like I said, life goes on.
Normalized but with the occasional bullet.
Thanks for reading.
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