I only knew him as Batman. He was an overweight hairy homeless man with a thick beard who wore a pair of blue jeans, with a rope for a belt, and an old gray shirt with the Batman logo across the chest, the yellow shinning bright despite the holes in the shirt.
He had a blue tarp that he used as a blanket at night and as a cape during the day. He had a break from reality long before I met him but that never stopped him from having an uplifting attitude.
Batman was a proud man. He never accepted money or food without trying to do something to earn it. He would walk up and down Main Street in downtown, saying hello to everyone he passed.
“Hello citizen, I’m Batman,” he would always say.
I would always give him my hand to shake but he never took it. He was afraid to touch another person for some reason.
I would see him every Saturday morning and I always looked forward to seeing him. I thought he would always be there until one day he wasn’t. After three weeks of not seeing him I started to ask around if anyone knew what happened to him. It took another week before I got my answer.
During the week as people were getting off work Batman was patrolling Main Street, as he always did. He saw someone was getting mugged at knife point. Without thinking he sprang into action, yelling at the man to stop as he ran toward him. The mugger stabbed Batman before running away. He died the hero he always claimed to be.
While Batman may be some actor in a costume in a movie, to me, the real Batman was a large fat homeless man with a thick beard and a huge heart.
I miss Batman.