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Spare Change Guy

By adamg - 1/21/22 - 10:42 pm
Bubier in 1971 and 2020

Bubier in his 1971 high-school yearbook and in a 2020 photo for the Sex Offender Registry Board.

John Bubier, long familiar to people downtown and elsewhere in the Boston area for his outstretched arms and "Do you have any spaaaare change?" requests, died Jan. 11 at 68. Read more.

By adamg - 5/21/21 - 12:17 pm

Cambridge Police report that John Bubier, whose croaky "spare change" pleas are familiar to anybody who's spent time in Downtown Crossing over the years, was arrested in Central Square last night on a warrant charging he failed to register with local authorities as a convicted sex offender. Read more.

By adamg - 1/5/15 - 7:53 am

Spare Change Guy, the croaky-voiced sex offender who normally whirls around at Tremont and Winter in Downtown Crossing. Read more.

By adamg - 8/26/14 - 6:31 pm

For the second time in a week, Transit Police report stopping John Bubier at Andrew station for trying to ride the Red Line for free - and then placing him in custody because he has an outstanding warrant, this time for assault and battery, out of Boston Municipal Court.

Last week, Transit Police arrested Bubier for allegedly failing to register as a Level 3 sex offender. He has since registered.

Innocent, etc.

By CopleyScott17 - 8/22/14 - 1:42 pm

Spotted shortly after noon at Tremont and Winter, Spare Change Guy, back on duty.

By adamg - 8/19/14 - 1:11 pm
John Bubier

Transit Police report arresting John Bubier, 60, around 9 a.m. today at Andrew Square after officers say they watched him piggyback through a fare gate behind a paying T rider and then discovered he had failed to register as a Level 3 sex offender.

Bubier, originally from Framingham, but best known for his croaking pleas for change in Downtown Crossing, was convicted of indecent assault and battery in 2011.

By adamg - 2/28/11 - 1:57 pm

Christina Prignano reports Spare Change Guy is now wandering around Government Center asking for $1.

By adamg - 8/19/10 - 9:46 am

Maybe Spare Change Guy is just tired of Downtown Crossing and the Common? Around 8:30 this morning, Tracey Newman tweets, MBTA police escorted him out of the Savin Hill T stop on the Red Line. Not long after, Dan Tobin spotted him nearby on Dorchester Avenue, asking for, yes, spaaaare chaaaange.

By adamg - 7/13/09 - 7:36 pm

I was meeting somebody on the Common today (it's amazing what you can do when the weather's nice). As I walked down Winter, there was Spare Change Guy doing his usual thing (and still clean-shaven) right at Tremont.

Meeting done, I walked through the Common back toward Downtown Crossing. Spare Change Guy was sitting on a bench. His hand was out, and he was asking for spare change, but he was really subdued, almost like his battery was worn down.

At his usual spot at Winter and Tremont, there was a Spare Change guy, somebody hawking Spare Change News. So is there some rotation going on here?

By adamg - 5/3/09 - 9:44 am

Spare Change Guy probably should have chosen a better place to ask for money than a march by people asking for money. Eeka, who forwarded this photo, reports SCG wasn't having much luck this morning.

Spare Change Guy not having luck
By adamg - 4/24/09 - 10:35 am

Streetsim took the definitive Spare Change Guy photo at the Tea Party demonstration outside the State House earlier this month. Who knew he had an entire rooting section now?

Spare Change Guy

Posted under this Creative Commons license.

By adamg - 4/16/09 - 9:32 am

Garrett videoed Spare Change Guy working the crowds at yesterday's rally.

By adamg - 2/26/09 - 7:37 pm

A correspondent spotted him down in Ashmont this evening, asking passers-by for, well, you know.

By adamg - 11/15/08 - 10:13 am

Whalehead King ponders Spare Change Guy:

He's an ugly guy with an ugly face. We don't follow him everywhere he goes but we suspect he brings up the rear in the human race. Despite that, he is a man and he seems to be an honorable one, even if he is often misunderstood. ...

By adamg - 9/18/08 - 6:05 pm

The Mick is walking across the Common wearing a t-shirt with a large "P" on it, when Spare Change Guy approaches her, asks if she goes to Princeton and smokes weed.

By adamg - 10/23/07 - 10:56 am

He's not just some innocent, if annoying, crank, he's a scary and potentially violent sexual harasser, duffless2323 warns:

... I have personally been harrased by him on 2 different occasions, a few years apart. I also saw him say some very violent and sexually explicit things to another young woman who was by herself until I turned the corner, I then walked with her and he went back to the spare change routine. She was very relieved someone came along. ...

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