Normal History Vol. 242: The Art Of David Lester

Every Saturday, we’ll be posting a new illustration by David Lester. The Mecca Normal guitarist is visually documenting people, places and events from his band’s 29-year run, with text by vocalist Jean Smith.

Continued from November 2

There were several big green garbage cans right there with fresh garbage bags sticking out. My plan was to eat the chicken, toss the plate and continue with my 40-minute walk after my 6.5 hour day of earning $78 of the $1,416 I will earn in a month with basic expenses around $1,200 a month. Technically, I probably shouldn’t be taking the chicken, but there wasn’t exactly a mob there and it was approaching 6:30 and how long would they stay out there and how much food did they have? Maybe I was doing them a favor.

I was standing there eating hungrily with my hands when an energetic man with a floppy hat and glasses arrived asking me if I lived around there. I’m not sure what look passed across his face when I gave my cross-streets in a better neighborhood. I was wearing a sort of upscale rain jacket (used, ripped, repaired) with a wool cap (found at the side of the road years ago) with my decidedly trendy First Pair Free glasses (everything else—boots, jeans, sweater—thrift-store sourced) and my hair (down to my waist again) was fanning out from under the cap in un-combable wildness all over the pack sack in what my mother used to call rat tails, which I think of as very tight ringlets. (Telling a child she has rat tails coming out of her head is maybe not too good.)

To be continued

“One Way Out,” from Janis Zeppelin (Smarten UP! 2003) (download):