People behind cardboard signs begging for cash

Jun 28, 2011, 2:26 AM | Updated: 2:27 am

He walks with a limp along North 105th Street in Seattle at the intersection with Aurora Avenue. He asks motorists stopped at the traffic light, “Could you help me please?” His sign says he’s “severely disabled.” I’ve seen him talk on a cell phone. He often wears Seahawks clothing. That’s all I know about the man who carries a cardboard sign at the same spot every day.

Everybody has a story. What’s his?

CardboardsignA Seattle filmmaker wants to discover the stories of many of the area’s homeless who hold cardbord signs and beg for money. Matt Longmire is trying to fund a local documentary and photography project to tell the stories of the men and women behind the cardboard signs.

“We rarely give more than a passing glance to the signs of the homeless,” says Longmire. “Our film and photography project will allow us to interview and document their stories with dignity.”

Ironically, Longmire is asking for money to fund the documentary project. Instead of a cardboard sign, he has this website to collect pledges of support before the middle of July.

Do you believe the people by the side of the road are in the situation they describe? Do you give money to them? While many signs are touching, such as the “anything helps” line. I’ve also seen some funny ones like, “My wife ran off with best friend. Need $$$ for a thank you card.”

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People behind cardboard signs begging for cash