Dogs Who Walked Past Me Today

In Union Square. There’s one non-dog shot, of this guy who walked by on these scary stilts.

There was a homeless guy sitting across from me and he shows up in a few of the pictures. It felt weird to be spending my time in such a carefree way not a dozen feet from someone living such a miserable life. There’s something wrong with us. Or me. That I can sit so calmly in the face of such suffering. I guess for me there’s just so many people suffering I feel paralyzed and overwhelmed.

I was talking with someone about joining the Peace Corps. Except I won’t leave the cats so I have to think of something else.

Stacy Horn

I've written six non-fiction books, the most recent is Damnation Island: Poor, Sick, Mad, and Criminal in 19th-Century New York.

View all posts by Stacy Horn →

5 thoughts on “Dogs Who Walked Past Me Today

  1. Hi Stacy.

    I just wanted to say that i really enjoyed this series of photos. dog number three looks so happy – and that made me smile.


  2. Hi Heidi! Thank you! I had so much fun just relaxing in the park, taking pictures of dog. It was ridiculous how much fun it was.

  3. Stacy, I don’t know if it will be any comfort to you or not, but the fact is that you do help out a great deal.

    Every time you buy groceries or go to a restaurant, you help provide salaries and benefits to busboys, stock clerks, people at the checkout counter, and the entire staff and ownership of the establishments.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if you have a savings account. Because you keep money at your bank, the money supply is larger and therefore desperately needed banking funds are more available for families getting loans for cars, houses, businesses needing loans to expand and offer more opportunities for employment and upward mobility.

    And furthermore, you pay taxes many times on every item you buy, down to a pencil and a razor blade. The ore for the graphite has to be mined, trucks have to be involved in transport, factories have to be involved in the process, and on and on until we have a pencil. And you have been taxed on every minute stage of that production.

    And a whole lot of those taxes go to help subsidize soup kitchens, pre-natal care, government assisted housing, programs that help try to stem drugs, etc., etc.

    So as a matter of fact you help out the rest of humanity a very great deal just in your daily and ordinary living. This is why Adam Smith taught us that by pursuing enlightened self-interest (like you authoring your wonderful books) society automatically benefits as if by an unseen hand.

    And then, of course, your books help illuminate their subjects for many people. As you may suspect, I am quite deeply involved in some of the subjects that you write about in Unbelievable. And as you can probably tell, I actually know more about research from the 1900s than from more contemporary parapsychology. Your book helped bring me up to date.

    And of course because you have written it, everybody in your publishing house receives a benefit all the way down to the clerks in the mail room.

  4. I have a big park near by and see a lot of homeless people there, too. Last Sunday, I was not aware that they were having a soup kitchen there and was simply astonished by the number of people gathered in the park. Oh, but homeless people have pets, too. Dogs and cats. They look happy when they are together, better than these without companions. A very little we can do but at least we can “see” that they are there and talk to them as some kind of pal.

  5. If I was homeless I would feel better if I still had a pet (although bad for my pet!).

    Greg, that was such a beautiful post and it really made me feel better. Thank you. And if you care to talk about what you referred to, I’d love to hear it.

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