Thursday, February 28, 2008
When You Hate Your Life
Whenever you can’t stand yourself, you can always walk outside. Parks are one of those places in the city of Portland where people can gather. The tennis players, kick ball players, frisbee throwers, dogs that roam, and the people who live in the park. I am alone among the many that have companionship. Now lonely feelings are diminished with the abundance of humans. You’re in shock about the condition of your life. You’re a mess, your can’t be in your house and you hate yourself. The one group of players that will give you their last smoke will be the people who live at the park. One of the coolest parks in the city of Portland, is called Colonel Summers where there is a huge parcel of land sitting between two busy streets. The park is quiet and the trees and grass provide comfort.
The crew of homeless people has names and a code of ethic they live by. The code of ethic is to stand by each other and tell each other that they are loved. I know what your saying, your saying, are you kidding me ! Yes, their is a smell of alcohol in the air is dissipated by the overwhelming smell of lavender.. The guys spend their mornings hustling up money for beers and cigarettes. Once they have this accomplished this difficult tasks, they hanging out and share their goods. They have to keep constantly moving so they go to bed quite early because they expect to get rousted at daylight. Most people do not realize that it is an endurance test of fitness. This crew is in better shape than most people who drive.
I wondered how the poor were treated in the depression, where they rousted? Of course, the crew has respect by the police who know what the crews habits.. The police can give them ticket after ticket and yet the police keep telling them to go somewhere, but there is no place to go. Everything has been privatized and voted on into city ordinances where you can’t camp or sit in one place very long.
I am outside running away from my horrible life which I cannot stand anymore. My life is like the movie Groundhog Day where I do the same day over and over until the main character realizes that his day is not going to change until he realizes that the only way out of his dilemma is to change himself.
I took a civil rights walk that has slammed into my face. My intelligence and legal mind has helped me file a discrimination charge against a nonprofit that is funded by the city. The repercussions have been high and I am not able to handle the oppression. I can’t breathe, eat, concentrate, or even put an email together.
I walk outside and see the crew. They say, your alright, you’re a good person, we have all shit in our pants. They make me laugh; I can breathe in their space of nonjudgmental and the simplicity of their lives. They can be content with a pack of cigs and a bottle of beer. How simple. It is easy to be with them. The main captain of the crew is Patrick who feels like he needs to take care of me. The whole crew appears accepting with only one question by a tribe member asking me whether I was a boy or a girl. The crew has lavish pot roast dinners and stories of people who once had very “normal” lives with professional careers. The thing that they have in common is a story of a women who hurt them so intensely, that changed their view on how they wanted to fit in society.
Colonel Summers crew has a dog. His name is trapper and his name does not accurately explain his demeanor. He is free and does what ever he wants. He does not trap anything and it would be terrible to ever see him in a cage. He enjoys his lifestyle. He mingles with the whole crew and has a special relationship with them all.
The crew likes to go the cemetery called the Lone Fir when they can sit for awhile and let the dog run freely. He recently found a red stuffed teddy bear at the graveyard. He grabbed it in his mouth and galloped with joy along the cemetery head stones. Whoever gave this gift to this particular head stone never imagined trapper having it in his mouth. He was so joyful and he made the entire crew laugh. The hope is that the owner found joy in it with the spirit of the gift now shared on many graves through trappers paws.
Patrick decides what he is going to do the next day and where the new rest should be with the crew and when he will go back into society. He appears tired with the lifestyle but acknowledges that he likes his beer and his freedom. He just wants to exist freely and helps others along his way to their respectful place in life. Patrick hangs out with all others, he does not judge any homeless person and allows new comers in the group with respect.
Our society could create a space outdoors, where people could go and sleep without paying a price. No sleeping outdoors event hough this was seen as normal behavior during Americans journey to the west. Now, everyone one must pay a price to sleep, no free sleeping in "rental" democracy.
Their were once people who lived rent free. Those people who were once freely roamed and shared their possessions were called Indians. Indians. These people often roamed and slept freely under the stars without being rousted. They are gone and confined to designated land and have lost much of their identity but left footprints of freedom.
There is no better place in the world to sleep than to sleep in a open sky. I am out here under the sky with God and the crew.
I still rise, I will not apologize for anything!
Not a Good Queer