This editorial ran in the August 31st edition of Spare Change News. It has since garnered various media attention, which will be detailed in a forthcoming post.
John, the "Spare Change Guy" on Fox 25 Morning News
Thanks to our favorite media column, the Weekly Dig’s Media Farm, we found out about a local homeless man who gained a degree of stardom a few weeks ago on Fox 25 News. (We’re sorry that we missed it, but no one who wants to learn anything, after all, watches news on any channel owned by Rupert Murdoch.)
The man in question is famous for shouting “Spare Change!” in a raspy voice at passersby as he sits or stands in a number of locations throughout Boston. Apparently, Fox 25’s morning news show thought it would be great to use him for some color commentary on staying cool in the summer heat (his advice, according to the Dig, included smoking cigarettes and drinking coffee).
We’d like to congratulate Fox 25 on bringing perspectives from homeless people into its morning newscast, and we encourage the station to continue championing the unique insight people like “Spare Change Guy” can provide to the commuting public. Certainly there is no better comedic relief than a man with severe mental health issues, no roof over his head and no family to claim him, and thus it is excellent news acumen to have “Spare Change Guy” offering his much-needed commentaries to the local viewing public.
In the future, if Fox 25’s morning show is looking for other characters to fill its remaining superficial air time, we have a couple of suggestions. The woman who stands by the Harvard Book Store with an oxygen tank asking for money to help her seven children (but sometimes five) who are all homeless would probably make for some good color. Or how about Allston’s own Kung Fu Man, who does karate chops and gives out sips of vodka in exchange for cigarettes and money?
Just give us a call, Fox. We’re here to serve. After all, there are plenty of downtrodden people here who can help your callous producers give your viewers hours of entertainment masquerading as news.