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BUMS
By Robert Shaffron
BROADWAY VIC

(A chant.) Spare a little change, your luck might change. Spare a little change, your luck might change. (A beat.) You believe in luck? Never mind. Doesn*t matter. ‘Cause I*m about to tell you a little secret. This is a little secret I know. I know it right down to the bone. I*m gonna tell you this secret so you can know the truth. Then you can stop wonderin*. And when you stopped wonderin* and you know the truth, then maybe you*ll slip a little somethin* into my cup. You like this cup? Found it. Found it right there ‘bout where you standin* at. Seen a man come out that little cafe ‘crosst the street he had this little cup in his hand. Dropped it. Dropped it in the gutter right there ‘bout where you standin* at. Fat, short little man. Had this big coat on, had some kinda fur ‘round the collar. Had it turned up half up to his face so it just about touch his hat where it come down on his head, so*s you could only see a little bit o* face kinda, you know, peekin* out. Pink face. Short, fat little pink face man. I pick up this cup here, and I shook out the last few drops of coffee, an* I held it out to this man, say, “Spare a little change, your luck might change.” So this fella he look at me he say, “That don*t rhyme. Can*t rhyme ‘change* wif ‘change.* Can*t rhyme a word wif its own self.” I say, “I don*t claim to be rhymin*. I*m just astin* for a handout.” He walked. Didn*t gimme nothin* either. But I got this cup off ‘im, so I guess that*s somethin*. (A beat.) Spare a little change, your luck might change. (A beat.) I ain*t forgot. I*m gettin* to it. You wanna know that secret I promised you. Here it is. Whether you believe in luck or not, it still is. Damn, that*s all there is. It*s all luck. Good luck and bad luck and dumb luck. Everything there is and everything there ain*t it*s just luck. I know ‘cause I lived luck. How come I*m here on this corner in these pissy pants talkin* to you is luck. May not be good luck, but it*s luck. Very happy to make your acquaintance. My name is Broadway Vic. This here*s my corner. You got a dollar?

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