John Bass

Age: 52

Where ya from? Bambrey Street near Cecil B. Moore Avenue, in North Philadelphia.

Have you been there long? I live in my grandfather's house, across the street from the house I grew up in. My mom sold her house when she retired and moved back down south.

What do you do? Years ago, I used to work in air-conditioning maintenance, fixing AC units in a hotel. After that, I worked to rehab houses with my grandfather. I also used to work in security at 18th and Market. I also worked in counseling at a drug rehab agency.

Did you retire? I went on Social Security disability after I fell down on my job. I've had juvenile arthritis since I was 12 years old.

What do you like about Philly? I like that I know where everything is I need to get to, to doctor's offices or wherever I need to go.

What do you do for fun? I like to shoot pool with my friends, and in the summer, I go deep-sea fishing down in Deal Island, Md.

Have you ever lived in any other city? For a few months, I went down to stay with my mother after she retired and moved to an area near Florence, S.C. But I didn't like it. We never saw people unless we went to church or to the Wal-Mart. It was too quiet. I had to come back here.

- Valerie Russ