On Hugo Alfredo Tale-Yax

Two weeks ago, Hubby and I went to try the Dumpling Man in the East Village. It was a really neat place, and fun to watch the chefs prepare those delish dumplings before our eyes.

Anyway, when we walked in, there was a guy kind of standing up on the sidewalk outside, looking like he was about to fall one way or the other. His eyes weren't focused on anything or particular. He was on drugs or very drunk or maybe very sick, but it wasn't normal. He was maybe in his forties or fifties, with ripped, dirty jeans, so he was probably homeless.

Most people see things like this and ignore it. But the guy could have fallen backwards and cracked his head open.

The cashier was debating whether to call, and then he did. I am glad he did that. He may have saved a life. And even if you think it was the guy's fault for being drunk/stoned/unemployed, whatever, think of the relatives who may have lost contact with him and wondered for years on end where he is. Or maybe the relatives right in the city who have been trying to push him to get help and be productive like he was when he was a kid.

Yes, this is conjecture, but why take the chance?

When the ambulance showed up, the cashier couldn't leave his post, so I showed the men in the ambulance where the guy was standing. One of the men said to me, "Did you ask him if he needs help?" I said, "No, but he's a danger to himself." The man kinda looked defeated, because that's one of the standards where you can force someone to get treatment. (He was also, as the cashier had said on the phone, a danger to others, because he was blocking the sidewalk.)

Anyway, I was glad the cashier called, because most people think "Ah, it's just a homeless guy" and ignore someone like that. But you know...everyone comes from two parents. Everyone has or had someone who loved them.

What spurred me to write about this was this story that's in today's New York Post:

(April 24) -- A homeless man who was stabbed while saving a woman from a knife-wielding attacker lay dying in a pool of his own blood for more than an hour while several New Yorkers walked past without calling for help.

Surveillance video obtained by the New York Post shows that some passers-by paused to gawk at Hugo Alfredo Tale-Yax early Sunday morning and
yet kept on walking.

Some guy even took a photo with his camera phone! Alfredo was only 31 years old.

Now, some of those who kept walking may have assumed help was on the way already. Still, if you're not sure, just call. It's free, you know. If you're afraid of getting involved, call 911, give the info on the location and occurrence, and walk away. You're not doing anything wrong.

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