Apparently Drunken Man Walks to My Front Door at Compton...

...wife and kid in the living room, which is just behind the entrance of the house...
...gate left open...

We live in a time where on any given newscast, we are inundated with news items that double as cautionary tales.  News of random robberies,'s a scary, negative world, and it seems so random.  Basically, if you watch the local news, you'll be inclined to never, ever trust anyone.

On top of that, my neighborhood has a history, one that from any Google search of my street, would deem it a mostly BAD history.  Without giving away too much detail, there is actually a Hispanic gang named after my street.

But I don't know what it is about me. 

Maybe Catholic guilt.  Maybe Anthropologist, 'let's-see-where-this-goes' mentality.

I crack open the door, but not our steel screen door so that there remains a barrier between me and this unknown individual.  I can kind of see him, but he can't see me.  He's shortish, mid-50s black man.

I ask him what's going on.

He says that he used to live in the very house that I live in today.  Says his name is 'Bobby.' He says that the neighbors know him. 

I think to myself, "well how come they don't help him out?"

He says that he was just in the neighborhood and got into some kind of fight.

He tells me that I have to help him.

There's a desperation in his voice that I would avoid on Metro trains.  But him being here, in my house, on my family's property, means that I can't just ignore him.

He asks if I could drive him to his place in South Los Angeles.

By this point, I'm blown away.  I'm glad he doesn't solicit money.  I don't really want to turn him away, but I still don't know who the fuck he is or what he's doing here.  However, if all he wants is a ride, I instantly get an idea.

"Hey man, what if I call you an Uber?"

The idea is my way of helping with something without spending money or necessarily directly dealing with him.

He keeps going on about how he just wants to go to his home in South LA and how he is known in this neighborhood. 

He never really answers the question, but tacitly he seems to approve as I explain that it's like a Taxi.  I pull up my phone and order it up from my app.  I order it, but I also want to warn the Uber driver by calling her; the driver never picks up the phone.  11 Minutes.

I tell him it is ordered, and that they're coming in 10 minutes. 

I take a closer look and see that he's bleeding just above the mouth.  I just try to continue conversation about what the neighborhood was like, trying in earnest to verify his claim to the neighborhood. 

He said that he grew up in my house during the 1980s.  He said it was where he grew up.  Kept saying that he knew people around, but conveniently were nowhere to be found on this chance school night.

When I see the Uber is getting close, I finally open the screen door so I could go outside and meet the man.

I tell him that the Uber is there, and he's still talking about going to South LA.  He's talking the whole time.

A middle-agish "alternative" looking white lady in a black sedan pulls up in front of my neighbor's house, and I spot her.  She has another passenger seated in the front seat, also another woman.

I immediately claim responsibility and say I ordered the Uber and ask if its OK.

She nods, and says, "It's fine."

Bobby hops into the backseat and I thank her with the profusion of a million suns.

But now, I just hope I don't see a local news story about an Uber driver something something by her passenger...

A Few Wednesdays Later

A white station wagon is parked right in front of my drive way where I normally would park after a day of work.

It is about 2 in the afternoon. 

I usually get that parking space, and it is sometimes a big deal when someone takes it.

Today, it is taken.

By Bobby.

He is talking to a neighbor that I don't talk to and greets me as soon as he sees me.

Says that he was here to repay me for calling that Uber.

He gives me $20, and says that we should barbecue some time.

Dodgers Radio Team on AM 710 Is Kinda Biased

...and that would be expected.  Heck, maybe it's what the station managers told them to do to keep their main listeners listening and interested.

But, from my perspective, it is cringe-worthy listening to their in-game commentary while rooting for the other team.

Yes, I am a Cubs fan, and have been since Triple Play 2000 for the Playstation (1) and a pixelized Sammy Sosa was featured on the CD cover.  Though I will admit that I've only dropped in and out of following them depending on their fortunes --- this year I am glad I get to tune out of UCLA football, phew less sports to follow.
I had only listened to these Dodgers announcers once, on Tuesday, for Game 3 and I already decided then that I was done with them unless the Cubs were winning thoroughly.

The only reason I bothered listening is because I was on the way home from work, captive to the radio, and the Cubs were already up 8-2, or so last I'd checked on my The only reason I bothered listening is because I was on the way home from work, captive to the radio, and the Cubs were already up 8-2 last I'd checked about 5 minutes before I got to the car.

My Evidence

When I tuned in yesterday at the top of the 9th inning, they spent a Cubs at-bat talking about how some Cleveland Indians' player had a wedding registry.  I'd already figured them as homers and were bellyaching so bad, so it was kinda satisfying to hear them blabbering on about something else.

But what annoyed me was this.

They use A LOT of hopeful, suggestive intimation towards Dodgers good fortunes, whether it's suggesting how the Dodgers could do this, or the Cubs (or the team the Dodgers are facing) could fuck it up.

For example, when I was listening to the game on Tuesday, which the Dodgers won 6-0 with Rich Hill's pitching beating out Jake Arrieta's.  The Dodgers were able to get lots of people on base.  Throughout the commentary they kept mentioning how Arrieta and the Catcher Miguel Montero were not good at preventing runners from stealing bases.  They then juxtaposed that talk with describing how fast the Dodgers runners were. 

What made it annoying was not that they mentioned this at all, but that they flooded their commentary spelling this out, almost acting as a primers for Dodgers' coaching strategy.  It was like they were egging on, rather than just remarking on it.   

Another example, Cubs closer Aroldis Chapman was pitching yesterday.  The Cubs were already up by 6 runs.  The Dodgers were able to put some runners on base. One of them kept mentioning that he had not thrown a ball over 99...meaning...obviously...COMEBACK!  He did let us know that a pitch had reached 100, but he glossed over that.  They just kept talking about how a closer could come in rusty or how perhaps the Dodgers could tire him out for Game 6 by upping his pitch count.

Anyhoo, full disclosure obligatory mention of Billy the GOAT.  I still remember 2003, and genuinely feel sorry for Steve Bartman.