My friends often describe me as a cynic and a pessimist. For the most part, they're right. Sentiment loses value when it permeates one's attitudes and behavior just as the value of a commodity decreases as it becomes ubiquitous, so as a rule I reserve expressing sentiment for rare occasions that I deem worthy. Fortunately, even the harshest cynics are surprised sometimes.
To begin, most people in my hometown know who Mike is. But I would bet that ninety-nine percent of those people don't know Mike's name. Mike is a homeless man who lives at the public library. He didn't really attract my attention until several months ago; since then, I have found him impossible to ignore.
At about eleven o'clock one Friday night, I left my house with the intention of buying a CD at Discount Den. I grabbed my coat to shield myself from the chill air, the result of a cold front and incessant rain, lowering temperatures into the 40s and threatening to drop them even more. Before I reached the Den, I passed the public library and noticed Mike sitting on a conc...
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