As part of the Authorship of Photography Workshop we were asked to produce a biography of someone you've seen but never met:
I pass this guy on my walk to work every morning with little more than a nod of greeting. Today I stopped and asked if I could take his photograph and ask a few questions:
He looks around appearing somewhat distracted, but answers;
Sure, but make it quick breakfast is waiting and they say breakfast is the most important meal of the day and right now it is the most important meal of the day. After that, lunch is the most important.
Lets start with your name. Your name is Schultz ? any surname ?
No, I have lots of names but no real surname, at least none that I can remember. You see, I was an orphan, never knew my birth parents or if I did I was too young to have any recollections of what they looked like.
I grew up in a home, a care home they say, but I didn’t much care for it. There were lots of others around and the place got rowdy at times. Of course there were the occasional fights, and sure I’ve had my share of knocks from the bigger guys but I was tough and could stand my own ground. The wardens would always be quick to step in and break it up, lucky for the other guy because I was just about to get the upper hand and he’d be sorry.
But I knew when to be tough and when to behave. I had my own room, got regular meals and the food was good. Food is always good. But it wasn’t much of a life and like I said I didn’t much care for the place. But I was smart enough to know that I was more likely to escape if I looked my best in front of prospective adopters. And so it was that I was taken in by a family and moved from one small room to another larger room with lots of doors.
And were you much happier at your new home ?
Of course, this was the life - freedom. Well, to a degree. I was kept on a tight leash at first, I guess they just didn’t want me straying and getting in with the wrong crowd. But I wasn’t going to give up a good thing and made sure I stayed on the right side of the fence and so they relaxed and gave me more freedom.
Given your stature, would you say your childhood was made more difficult ?
Not at all, childhood was much like any other, lots of play time, sunshine (I love to lie in the sun and get my dose of vitamin D) and fresh air. I had plenty of toys, still have most of them hidden away or buried somewhere but I expect they are a little worse for the wear now. I loved playing soccer with the kids on the block. I was great at it although they didn’t seem to think so. I think they were just jealous because I was the fastest runner on the field.
I’ve still got lots of friends, some have moved on but the core pack is still around and it’s easy enough to make new fiends with a simple smile.
Any 'special' friends ?
You mean like girls ? I’ve had my share, it’s a hormonal thing but I have a preference for blondes. There’s something about walking out with a blonde that smells good.
What about Education ?
Education – yes I was educated, home tutored, learned how to count, very important in my line of work.
Which is ?
I’ve done lots of jobs jack of all trades and master of all. But mostly in the security business. Got to count the number of people coming and going make sure they add up. Missing someone could lead to trouble but with my street background I could sniff out the ones that were up to no good. Keen eyes too. Be alert that gets you places in my line of work. It doesn’t pay well but it’s a career that I like and I’d rather be doing something I like than taking orders all the time, sometimes you’ve got to give a deaf ear and do what you want to do, not what you’re told. I’m smart but sometimes it pays to act dumb and look confused. Can’t think why some people get irritated at that.
But don’t get me wrong, I’ll obey orders but there’s got to be a reward at the end of it. And don’t paint me out to be all tough and no compassion. I’ve been a nurse, and I’m first to care for my family when they are sick. I’m also quick to forgive and forget.
Do you have any religious beliefs ?
Do I believe in God ? Yes, although I think his name is spelt wrong.
What about political bias ?
Political bias, what do you mean by that ?
What path do you follow ?
Ah, well now why didn’t you just ask that ? It varies depending on the day. Sometimes I lean to the left but I can just as easily take a sudden shift to the right, or just stay middle of the road, it all depends on which side smells better at the time.
And talking of time my breakfast is waiting, I really must be going.
And he's off padding along the trail with his head high and an air of authority.