CityBeat’s Living Out Loud – Cincinnati Blog

{October 24, 2006}   “Little Man”

little-man-pic.jpgAs I said in a post a few weeks ago, I’m back where I started, working some hours at Elgin Office Equipment downtown doing a little bit of everything, just like over 30 years ago.

While smoking a cigarette outside this morning in front of the store, I had a conversation with a guy who was going to help Shawn, one of our warehouse employees, move some furniture around on the seven floors we have at Elgin.

“Man, I’m tired this morning,” he said looking at me as he took a puff on his cigarette.

He was maybe wearing three coats. His hair was long and black with some gray in it. He didn’t have any teeth and he needed a shave. He was maybe five feet tall.

“How long you been up?” I asked.

“Since four,” he replied.

“Makes for a long morning doesn’t it?” I said.

“I’ve been like this for the past 20 years, just get up at four.”

“You live here downtown?”

“No, I live over in Northside,” he said.

“You took the bus in?” I asked, stomping out my cigarette on the sidewalk.

“Nope, I walked.”

“What? You walked here today – to downtown – from Northside?”

“Well, hell, as I said, I get up at four.”

I laughed and looked at him like he was kidding. Clearly he wasn’t.

“What’s your name?” I asked extending my right hand to him.

“Everyone calls me Little Man; guess you can call me that too.”

“I’m Larry,” I said shaking his hand.

“Nice to meet ya, “he replied. “I’ve been working here on and off for 17 years, helping them move all that stuff they got around. Guess I’ve been doing something right. They always want me to come back.”

I didn’t see little man for the rest of the day. He was busy moving furniture, was going to stay until early evening.

When I left Elgin today, I couldn’t help but think of Little Man again and that long, cold walk he’ll have to get home to Northside tonight. I should have given him some money for the bus, but something tells me he wouldn’t have taken it.

Larry Gross


Eric says:

Little man lives in Northside? I think I know the guy.

shely says:

walking from northside to downtown? not only is the man little, he is nuts!

Karen says:

You have such a good heart. You talk to these offbeat people and turn it into a little interesting, strange story. I love how you write 🙂

Jean says:

What a strange, unlikeable story.

Elly says:

Like always, you’re all wet. I liked the story.

Matt says:

I know this man from Northside, pretty good guy and works like a horse! He may be a little man but he’s mighty. He’ll probably remember me. Tell him Matt says hello.

Bill says:

Always a cast of characters downtown.

Marilyn says:

Haunting. Don’t any of you meet people that leave you wondering? Wanting to know more, or why, or just – something?

But maybe not, I once had a girlfriend (the only person I ever had to platonically “break up” with) and she just couldn’t understand the questions I had…

William says:

Jean and Shely need to go do something…together! Its people like you that make Cincinnati so stale. I feel for the men in your life. I guess they drink and pop X around the clock for fun because you two are so boring.

Larry, thank you for the Little Man piece. I like meeting people like him. They do leave you wondering, think about your own life and what you can do that moment to make it better or make someone else’s better. People like him make me tolerate this city. I like offbeat people.

Multiple choice on Friday?

Many says:

Jean doesn’t like anything. I don’t know why she keeps coming here, to run it down? Sort of like numb.

Spike says:

Hola Geninne!! a mi me ha pasado lo mismo que a Isabela!! al principio no me di cuenta de que uno era una foto y el otro un dibujo!! me encanta!!!! como todo lo que haces.Por cierto, soy Jessica, te escribí un mail hace algunos días y ya he creado mi blog!!! Te invito a que lo visites.Te mando un su!erbesop!!

Many says:

Jean doesn’t like anything. I have no idea why she keeps coming here, maybe to run it down – sort of like numb the asshole.

paul says:

little man is strange and lives in northside. no shock there at all.

hard as nails says:

i think i know the guy too. he’s always looking for work, don’t know why the guy can’t find steady work. he works his ass off.

Matt says:

Hey, Paul, I live in Northside too and can walk and chew gum at the same time. Can you?

Laura says:

I think I know him. Does he wash windows too?

paul says:

sorry, matt, no offense

Larry Gross says:

“Multiple choice on Friday?”

Hi William,

No multiple choice this Friday, think we’ll do it every couple weeks. On Friday will be another LOL Girl post. LOL indeed!

Jeff- or-ly says:

Hey Paul, watch your mouth. Northside rules!!!!!!!!!

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