Gary's one bedroom apartment matched the outside of his drab and poorly looked after building. Located on the second floor, I followed him up the stairs as he got out his keys. He opened the door and stood back, motioning me to enter with a big smile on his face.
"After you," he said. I was shocked speechless at the total disaster; newspapers and magazines strewn all over the floor, an empty pizza box in the corner, dirty dishes and crusty old cans of dog food on the kitchen counter, several pairs tennis shoes in the living room. A dirty, fowl, musty smell lingered in the air that made me recoil.
Quickly, he pushed aside papers from his couch making room for us to sit. I imagined him spread out on that couch, watching tv or taking a nap using the garbage as his blanket. I thought it was so weird. I immediately plastered a counterfeit smile on my face, something I had learned to depend on to escaped the reality of certain situations. I thought about this cat burglar and how he had to be so well organized in order to burglarize million dollar homes in
Beverly Hills and get
away with the loot. Here he was living in complete filth. Why would he risk
his life like that to live like this?