Friday, February 18, 2011

An adorable little street urchin

Ok, so this happened a couple weeks ago but it’s still hilarious.

The kid you see in the pictures is named Lucas – he’s cute, mostly because he’s got lots of gall and he’s only 10 years old. Skinny and brash, he’s probably one of my favorite kids in my town. He’ll see me walking by, stop wrestling with some other kid and run up, grab my arm and ask me to teach him how to hit on girls in English. Then he’ll shout garbled versions of what I tell him and make the teenage girls giggle as they walk by.

So the other day he was walking around with this sign and of course I had to take pictures. Apparently he’d been working the local bus routes:

Here’s a closer look at what the writing says:

Translation: “Help me – I can’t speak”. The part he scribbled out on the side says “I’m blind”, which lets us know he was a little indecisive about which fake handicap to embody.

For those of you that aren’t familiar with this hustle, it’s really simple. You go on the bus with a sign, pretend to be mute, hold out your hand and people give you money. It’s reaallllly easy because all you have to do is look pathetic and not say anything (and a lot better than faking blindness because then you’d have to run into stuff.)

I’ve seen children and adults purport muteness on buses for years and I’ve always been a little suspicious – all they have to do is remain quiet! It always seemed really easy. Anyway, regardless of whether all those people I refused cash deserved it or not, I finally had physical proof of the hustle (Lucas can definitely talk) and it made me roar with laughter.

I got him to show me the money he pulled in – it looks like he made about 9 quetzales, which is a little over $1 and not too bad I think ….

You have to admit that this picture is totally cute, regardless that Lucas is a total scam artist. Adolescent mischief is essentially the same everywhere, I guess ☺