Being homeless is more than just a feeling of frustration; more than feeling like every break is a bad one; and more than the fear that one more bad break will have you sleeping in your car, next to a dog badly in need of a grooming. There is a whole group, a subset of things you’ve taken for granted which are gone, kaput, adios. I call them “the little things”. For instance, razor blades. My own personal preference is to use one for about a month, then change it out. Blade cartridges are expensive. You don’t realize how expensive until you see a 5-pack and it’s over $20. That $20 is two days of food for me, so I pass until “things get better”. Currently I’ve been using the same blade for three months. Each shave leaves me bleeding like a horny teen from Friday The 13th. The difference is, I didn’t get to squeeze soft 18 year-old titties before my jugular was sliced. I did get to pet a wet dog.
Perhaps the most impactful “little thing” is with my contact lenses. Besides needing them to see anything over 3′ away, the bastards serve little purpose. I have the weekly disposables and they’re about $60 for a box of 6 lenses, with 2 boxes needed, as each eye is a different level of blindness. Now I know the instructions say to toss ’em out each week, but being a bit frugal I’ve always stretched it out to 3-4 weeks. So that box will typically last me about 5 months. The efficacy of the lenses deteriorates over time, with a little blurred vision being the consequence. But hey, if the old bitch doesn’t bother to look both ways before taking her walker into the intersection, it’s not my problem. What IS my problem is wearing the same pair of lenses for months at a time, which is what I currently do. The lenses dry out quickly when worn, and suddenly I can’t read street signs, or an address on the curb. Now it’s fucking with my money so is my problem. The lenses are on month 3, well past the time when they’re a benefit. So my solution until “things get better”, is to wear the contacts during the day, when I can also wear the necessary sunglasses, and then pop them out at dusk, switching to prescription glasses. The objection to glasses used to be a vanity thing with me. No longer. It’s strictly about vision. The SoCal sun can be quite harsh at sunrise and sunset and without glasses which adjust, it’s pretty damn difficult to see anything. Remember that nice old lady with the walker? She just got out of the hospital and I ran her over again because of the fucking glare. “Sorry ’bout that. Can I offer you a warm pizza?”
Clothing is another “little thing” on the list. Anklet-style socks are the victims of my destitute situation. Again, it’s a judgement call. Socks are about $10 for a 5-pack and that’s too rich for my blood. Iron poor blood? HA! I can’t afford iron. I’m so broke I just have poor blood. So my socks have holes; many, many holes. I put them on and it looks like my toes are trying to tunnel under a border wall to freedom. And underwear? Forget about it. Filed under “Too much information” I’ll state I prefer the colored boxer-briefs. Most have a hole big enough to make a nice poncho if Teddy Ruskin ever does a remake of The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly.
There are more examples of the “little things” but I gotta hit the road. It’s a very stressful week ahead. Tomorrow everything I own goes to storage auction. This is a giant leap towards just giving the fuck up. I always had some solace knowing I had quite a few things of value, including 50+ years of memories, photos, etc., which could be retrieved once I had a place. It is one small thing which separated me from the guy with the shopping cart piled high with possessions; everything he owned. Tomorrow I join his horrible fraternity. Even though the UberX (meaning people) delivery job paid better, I got started too late. I was able to put a few dollars aside in a relatively short time frame. There just wasn’t enough time to earn what was needed to save the stuff from auction. In sports terms the clock hit 00:00. This makes me unbelievably sad, even as I type this. It’s a defeat, and a major one. After 10 AM tomorrow all I will own is what is in that miserable fucking motel room, and it isn’t much. And Wednesday is another moving day. The 28 days flew by, and I’ll need to find another place for at least two days. Outwardly I can project friendliness and still get smiles from almost everyone I encounter (the old lady in the intersection being the exception), but inwardly I’m a goddamn wreck. There is a breaking point I’m heading towards, not voluntarily. I’m being pushed from behind and I’m fighting it.
Time to drive 15 unsuspecting passengers who haven’t a clue as to what I’m experiencing.