Wednesday, November 26, 2014

More Holiday Joy

Another holiday looms ahead like a lousy Super Bowl halftime show: Thanksgiving. I think this and Christmas are he toughest holidays for homeless people, because most of us have no place to go to enjoy fellowship, comfort, and the traditional meals except at the usual bumfeeds. Well, there is fellowship to be found among our peers, but even those among us who are social sometimes get tired of hearing the same tirades, snivelings, dunderheaded discussions, and lame jokes all told over godawful malt liquor. I guess it's just hard to feel thankful while out here basting ourselves in false cheer, and the love of God and the fellowship of man both seem pretty far away when the yule log serves only as an impromptu seat and the mistletoe serves only to keep the rain or snow imperfectly at bay. Even as nice as it is to be gifted hand warmers and knit hats, such utilitarian charity doesn't really feel like presents, at least not like the cool stuff some of us used to get when we were kids.

Don't think that I'm maudlin; I'm actually pretty used to being a loner and eating instant mashed potatoes. I'm just saying that it's not much fun to realize that you're going to be pushing a shopping cart full of bottles and cans most of the day while there's people snug indoors, basking in the luxury of petty grievances about certain relatives and seasons-greeting repeats on TV. But, at the very least, I can say that I may spend the holiday season at least unmolested by my sketchy tweaker troglodyte neighbors in the area, which is indeed something to be thankful for. Until yesterday there was two encampments within a block of me and two vehicles parked on the street my loading dock lies on; as of last night only one encampment remains, which I will leave be until I start feeling like I'm being stalked by kleptomaniacal ghouls or am just getting woken up a lot by midnight noise and traffic.

In fact, yesterday afternoon I fired off a first salvo in a war I may or may not end up waging against the unsavory elements that have recently inundated the neighborhood. I printed out a dozen fliers and distributed them to the businesses near where I “live”, effectively encouraging their workers to call the police non-emergency number to complain whenever a meth-fueled compound gets erected nearby. Community policing. Half of the recipients commiserated with me as we traded stories of vandalism and theft; the other half gave me surreal glassy-eyed passive stares masking half-assed laissez-faire indignation and consternation as if I were espousing some kind of Endlösung for the homeless. We'll see how it pans out. I really don't plan on doing much more than expanding the distribution of fliers and calling the police whenever I feel too encroached upon; I can only effect my environment so much.

1 comment:

  1. You know... for some people, Thanksgiving is about stuffing one's face- more so than the turkey! How else are people supposed to energize themselves for the battle of Black Friday? Consumerism is king; especially this time of the year.

    Even so, my heart goes out to you, and I'll be holding a beer to my lips in solidarity- to you staying warm and being safe.

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