For a long time, I have balked at seeking transitional housing, mainly for two reasons: (1) There must be a thousand buildings in Baltimore City serving that function, each with its own application process, eligibility criteria and rules — not to mention desirability. There’s no way to find “the right place” without going to each one in person. (2) I have heard too many credible horror stories of negligent house managers and conflicts with residents who abuse substances, abuse the property, and abuse each other.
Fortunately, the case manager at the clinic appears to have equipped me with the very short list of highest-rated outfits.
Last week’s City Paper cover story sets forth a microcosm of what is, in fact, the big picture:
Continue reading Housing the homeless ain’t that easy →
The dentist prescribed ibuprofen 800s and, for me to take at night if the toothache became severe, Hydrocodon-Acetaminoph 7.5-325. This is a narcotic. “Pain pills.”
I have a large zipper bag with four compartments. There is a main compartment, which I can lock; a front compartment; a left side compartment; and a right side compartment.
Every afternoon when I sit on my bunk, I empty my pockets and put my phone, debit card, and cash in the main compartment. I take my afternoon meds, which are already in there, and lock it all back up.
Related: Giving it all away
Continue reading The pain pills saga →
The shelter boots us out at 5:45 a.m. daily. You must take all your belongings with you and cannot come back until 2:30.
Until February 2013, my custom on non-work days was to go to Dunkin’ Donuts to pray, drink coffee and use the bathroom, until the library would open at 10:00 and I could go online. Then the temp agency closed down, and I could no longer afford Dunkin’ Donuts coffee, and so began going to McDonald’s instead.
Some days I would arrive at Dunkin’ Donuts before opening. One such morning, I arrived to find a large, neat pile of human feces on the doorstep. It was clearly no accident. Who had left it there, and why, had no bearing on the fact that it was there now.
When staff arrived we opened the door and stepped inside very carefully to avoid any contact between the door and the stool, or our feet and the stool. However, I knew that if nothing were done about it, eventually, inevitably, customers who could not take the time to be as observant and careful would step in it and begin tracking it through the store.
Continue reading The poop on the stoop →
This thinking goes back to 1973.
I was a senior in high school, running an errand in the family car. I must have been listening to WKSU. This 5- or 15-minute segment came on. A female spokesperson for the ACLU said that, under the compulsory school attendance law, a minor can only be in one of two places: a school, or a penal facility. In her view there was no real difference.
I was an honors student and deeply convicted that education is the answer to poverty. Thus her remarks left me incensed. More than that, whereas I’ve never been a conservative, it seemed to me that the ACLU and other, like-minded movements were bent on destroying all order in society. The family unit was under attack. Marriage was under attack. The schools were under attack. Change for its own sake, which seemed to be what these people were after, isn’t good. Nothing can be built on a foundation of chaos. A child needs to root oneself in earth that will be in the same place today as tomorrow. A tree can’t grow in quicksand.
Continue reading Where trees thrive, people thrive →
Yesterday, as usual, after church Vladimir and I went to the McDonald’s at Baltimore and Light Streets, to drink coffee and study. Time came when both of us needed to use the bathroom. The floor outside was flooded, and a sign on the door said, “Out of order. Sorry. 😦 ”
It remains out of service today.
Continue reading All stressed up and nowhere to “go” →
You can live in a nice house
in a safe neighborhood
if you make it that way.
It’s not about physical relocation, but spiritual.
Continue reading Move into a better neighborhood →
(Reblogged from the above original date. This post is three years old. Except for my personal situation, the issues haven’t changed.)
Job search update
Crisis for D.C. homeless families
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Job search update
Things are moving full steam ahead on my application for a Secretary II position with the City, as I’ve probably described in previous posts. The hours are 8:30-4:30, which under normal circumstances will let me get to the shelter in time to (1) actually get in and (2) take a shower each day. I will need to phone the office Monday morning 02/03/14 to confirm that all’s in line, and possibly find out a start date.
Continue reading Job search update, 02/03/14; and other news →