I’d met Khalid many years ago at the St. John the Compassionate Mission on Queen and Broadview where I serve every Sunday. He was a short man with a slight forward tilt. He looked well into his fifties or possibly early sixties. The man rolled a small cart behind him filled to the top with bags stuffed with all kinds of miscellaneous items. He wore a small cap too small for his head, black Denver Hayes old man pants and a knitted grey sweater with stitched red diamonds that would make Bill Cosby proud. The man smiled at me and told me his name. I gave him mine.Read More
One of the most memorable characters I’d encountered on Toronto's streets was a portly brown man I’d met on the corner of Queen and Sherbourne, right outside the Maxwell-Meighen men’s shelter in downtown Toronto, in late November of 2016. A thick black moustache hugged the man’s upper lip and down the sides of his round face, spotted in stubble. A slight hopeless smile graced his lips and heavy eyes.Read More
The man closest to the counter had black wild bushy hair and a pencil thin moustache. On his face sat a pair of black glasses with tiny oval lenses that framed his small, wide open eyes, much like how I figured a serial killer would look. His clothes were dirty and ragged, like the man who sat a table across from him.
The other man had a hard stubbled face and soft stare, a close-mouthed gaze of a heart lost in space and time as victim to an unforgiving world that never knew his name or gave him reason not to close his eyes and slip into the cold dark shadow of eternity. I looked down from the man’s face to his hands. He had a thumb and a pinky on each. Nothing in between.Read More