Dear Inner Circle,
The front of our building in Kings Cross catches some warming sun in the morning. For those who are wet and cold, this is a significant gift. It’s one of the few places where tired and shabby people will not be asked to ‘move on’. Sometimes I sit with the crowd early in the day just to remind myself of the difference between ‘big’ and ‘little’. It’s rather easy to let the machinery of serving people loom larger than the people the machinery is designed to serve. As we chatted this morning, a couple of cops walked past us and into our building. One cop was wearing a tazer-gun. I said to the fellow next to me, “Those tazer-guns give me the creeps.” “No!” he snapped back at me. “To be shot by one of those things is the best way in the world to clear your sinuses.”
In a single day, I often move from the gutter to the penthouse and back again. At 11am one day this week, I sat literally in the gutter with a fellow who is not long out of prison who had already broken every promise he’d made to himself while incarcerated. At noon, I was in the board room of DibbsBarker, addressing a most august gathering of executives and being served lunch to a standard that would do any three-hat restaurant proud. Just before I spoke, a senior lawyer sitting next to me asked, “Do you spend your time running welfare programs or trying to save souls?” There are times when my cackle becomes a laugh that is really too big for a board room. I said, “If ‘saving souls’ is to be concerned with ‘belief’ then I never worry about saving souls.” Arranging cognitive propositions to align to some orthodoxy seems like a ludicrous activity to me. Salvation comes through the feet not through the head. It matters where you go and it matters how you love others and make the world a better place. I observed that the greatest gifts to the world are often made by those who believe the wrong things, while often those who destroy the world are orthodox in every way. This conversation was just a minute at the most as I was then introduced and invited to speak to the group about Wayside. Two hours later I was sitting in McDonalds eating food I didn’t need and drinking coffee I didn’t want, while a man poured out his heart in slow agonising sentences. It was an honour to be in the gutter. It was an honour to be in the board room and it was an honour to be in Maccas. It was a special thrill to see our coffee table book Wayside on display in the beautiful DibbsBarker offices.
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