A while back I was editing a music video for a new director. He wanted me to edit at his studio, so I'd go there at night after my day job. On a nightly basis I'd meet some random new person I hadn't met before, all of them young fashionable kids who seemed fresh out of art school. 25 years old, maybe 27 tops, but nobody appeared to be anywhere close to my age.
Then one night I went in and saw one guy sitting at a computer who looked like he could have been 60 years old. More telling than his age, he seemed out of place with his level of cleanliness. He was disheveled in a way that looked like he might not have showered in a week, and his clothes probably hadn't seen a washer in a while either. Luckily he didn't stink.
Being the polite and friendly guy I am, I went over and introduced myself. Mainly to find out what his role at the studio was, because my noodle was having a hard time making sense of his presence in the studio. He turned around and shook my hand (which I kept away from everything until I could get to some sanitizing gel) and he told me his deal.
He launched into stories about how he used to be into computers and how he had a real estate business, and that's when I noticed at least 3 of his front teeth were missing. I couldn't get a word in edgewise as he told me about his furniture making companies and how his wife left him and finally we got to the place I knew we were heading: He was homeless.
Apparently the director had just met him on the street that night, and the director hired him to make silkscreens and tatoo logos all over Venice. I figured I had enough info to make sense of the situation and to get back on track with trying to get work done. But the guy never took a pause long enough to escape politely. It's then that I put two and two together and figured the guy was probably a lot younger than he looked because he was a meth burnout.
Finally I was rescued by the director, who had been giving instructions to one of the art school graduates. He turned around and said "Hey could you guys keep the conversation down? I can't even hear what I'm saying here." Yeah. You guys. Plural. I don't think I'd voiced a single word since "Hi, I'm Lee". It was all meth beast from that point on.
I said "Excuse me, I think I better get to work" and I went upstairs. While I was editing, all I could hear was the homeless guy rattling on about this and that, and when somebody played a new wave tune from the 80s he said "Right on man, is that Pink Floyd or somethin?" The director shouted downstairs to the guy that he was going to have to stop talking or he'd be kicked out of the studio. He was booted shortly thereafter. Surprise surprise.