Warren (#895) 06-16-15

What a character! While sipping my cup of java, I was outdoors at a railing delineating the coffee shop territory. On the other side was the property of a noodle restaurant. Warren (on the noodle side) walked up to a table next to me and said, “Mind if I sit here?”

“Of course not, why wold I mind?” (It was a different establishment, after all).

“People need a certain amount of space”

“I'm fine.”

Then Warren talked. And talked. He has lived in Baltimore, Charlotte, Chicago, and Asheville for one year. He moves to follow the spirits (this must be a North Carolina thing). He is Hebrew born, but of Cherokee descent. Warren said that the word Cherokee means chosen people. With a quick Google search I was unable to confirm this.

He spent several years in the army as a non-commissioned officer. Warren was stationed in Washington, in communications, when Lyndon Johnson was President. One morning he delivered a notice to LBJ in the White House. An hour later, Johnson appeared at Warren's door, in his bathrobe, and chewed Warren out, complete with profanity, and Warren had no idea why. He was petrified. Later in the morning, Johnson returned and apologized. And he insisted that Warren, and a coworker, attend a highfalutin state barbeque that afternoon. Warren said that he later learned that the message that he had delivered announced that Bobby Kennedy was running for president. According to Warren, LBJ and Lady Bird were incensed at the insult. As a sitting president, Kennedy should have told Johnson personally that he was running.

About this time, I mentioned to Warren that I liked to photograph strangers, etc. As I suspected, he was suspicious and wary. “You can't be too careful. That's why I sit at the back of the table, looking out, I can see danger approaching and take action. I learned that in the military.”

Well, Warren and his cohort didn't know what to make of the barbeque invitation, but they figured that they had better show up. A guard immediately escorted them to a door when Lyndon Johnson rescued them, told the guard that they were his guests. The 'guests' could not believe the spread of food available. Befitting of their low rank, the proceeded to fill their pockets with roast beef.

Then Warren waved his hand toward a public park and said that there had been a musical show recently. But when he came, police escorted him out and said that they didn't need any crazy people there.

I made up a story and excused myself. As I was leaving, I mentioned the portrait again. He said “Yeah, I trust you. You are not one of them.”

I earned this one.