Tuesday, April 24, 2018

April 24, 2018

As if my life can't get any worse...

I got a rejection e-mail earlier today from the last outstanding job offer I had left in NYC. And to add insult to injury, I got a call this afternoon from the New York City ID program- an ID I applied for in March got sent to the shelter I'm staying at. The shelter refused the mail with the new ID in it (in blatant violation of their own policy), and it got sent back to the city. I was told to pick it up in person no earlier than May 4, but at this point, I have no intention in staying in NYC that long.

Right now the only thing keeping me here is a psychiatric appointment for tomorrow morning (which I probably need to attend now more than ever, even if it is more of a diagnostic appointment for wherever I do move to). I am exploring bus options (supposedly the city provides one way bus tickets out of town), but it looks like any move will probably not change my homeless status.

So much for getting a job that pays $13 and hour or getting the chance to vote Andrew "No Homo" Cuomo out of office this November...

Sunday, April 22, 2018

April 22, 2018

Supposedly today is Earth Day. I understand the recycling and trying to protect the environment thing, but I don't understand the extremists who worship the earth as a god and are willing to save the planet at the expense of their own species.

I've been stuck for the last 3 months in the NYC homeless system. My first 3 weeks were at a "Drop-in" center in Brownsville, Brooklyn. Unlike city shelters, drop-in centers refuse to provide beds for their clients. They use chairs. 3 weeks of attempting to sleep in chairs and the back problems as a result of sleeping in chairs led to me entering the city's shelter system. I've spent over 10 weeks in that nightmare, with dozens of rejected job applications, the forced sale of my car, and the HRA/Public Assistance nightmare driving me to the brink of insanity.

I'm supposed to hear from my last outstanding job application tomorrow. The pay is minimum wage (although NYC's new minimum wage of $13 an hour is higher than anything I've ever earned before). But I see no point of staying in NYC and wasting away in the shelter system if I can't find work. I'd argue that unemployment has gone up here precisely because of the new minimum wage. And even that's not enough to keep up with the rents, with SROs now renting for far more than my last apartment in Maine.

I don't know if those fancy resumes, those sessions at the writer's workshop where I managed to start on a decent short story, or all that free medical care that proved that I still have asthma (and managed to prove and disprove that I had serious liver problems), I don't know if any of it was worth it.

Monday, January 08, 2018

January 8, 2018

Amazing how one event can send your whole life crashing down. In my case, it was a major car repair. What started off as an oil change appointment led to a burst steering hose and a check-busting $400 repair that due to the scarcity of replacement parts is still not completed yet, 3 days after I took the car in. Without a running car, I have no way of getting to work. Because of my lack of transportation, I no longer have a job. I have at most 10 days to find a job walking distance from my apartment before rent is due again. If I don't have the rent money, then I lose my apartment (and the $610 deposit), and will probably end up homeless again. So far this period since March 2015 has been my longest period of not being in a homeless shelter in the last 10 years. But I guess I can't escape the inevitable again.

Thursday, January 04, 2018

January 4, 2018

It has been a busy few months since I last posted here. Since October, I've had my first apartment since May of 2011. About 2 months after I got the apartment, a new landlord bought out the building and changed the rent payment dates. I got to spend about a month alone before a nosy neighbor moved in.
That nosy neighbor, known as Misty the Cat, has proven difficult to evict, even after she misbehaved and disfigured my face with her claws.
For the first few weeks, she was a indoor/outdoor cat, due to the fact that she had been living outdoors for several days to several weeks before she barged into my apartment. She now spends her days indoors, using my tv stand as a lookout post and using the crawl space underneath the kitchen sink as a hideout whenever she hears a plastic bag crackle or hears boots stomping on the floor.
I've been wearing my boots a lot due to the weather- snowstorm after snowstorm since early December, and 2 weeks plus of sub-zero mornings. The snowstorm today qualifies as a blizzard (probably more so than last week's Christmas storm that dumped a foot plus of snow on my neighborhood).
If I didn't have an apartment, a needy cat, and a high paying job 23 miles from home, I'd consider moving to the warmer climates of New Jersey or Pennsylvania. But all this may come crashing down if my 16 year old Taurus (with 220000 miles that has never experienced these kind of weather conditions before) stops running.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

August 15, 2017

Today is the feast of the Assumption, a Catholic religious holiday that honors Mary and her life (and after-life). I managed to attend the Assumption Mass at the Basilica on my first weekday off work in a while, while also signing up for uninsured health care at the local Catholic hospital, St. Mary's. I also removed my last vestige of Texas residency by finally switching the Taurus's license plates over to Maine for about $150.

Most Catholic holy days that honor Mary are supposed to be days of peace, but peace is in short supply in this world right now. The white nationalists and nazis are at it again, protesting and causing havoc, most recently with a white nationalist rally turned terrorist attack in Charlottesville, Virginia, on August 12. Their main protests right now are over the removal of monuments that honor a 150+ year old defeated secessionist movement. Normal countries that survive civil wars would never allow widespread worship and remembrance of the defeated enemy, but this country allowed it. For 152 years. Now that the overwhelming majority of Americans (including most Republicans, despite what the leftists say) want these monuments to the proprietors of enslavement and the end of American unity gone.

The irony is that America is waking up to these mistakes at the same time it is splitting apart again. The battle lines this time aren't over enslavement of Africans (thankfully the Confederate defeat in 1865 ended that), but over the role of government, the value of life of the unborn, and cultural insanity (i.e. the left's political correctness) versus cultural common sense. While the US is at war with itself, one of its most annoying adversaries is threatening nuclear war against it. North Korea has made similar threats before, but President Trump has figured out the status quo isn't working and is threatening to nuke North Korea if they attack the US. Kim the Insane already has the capability to wipe out South Korea, Guam, Hawaii, Southern Alaska, and California. Kim the Insane has already pissed off his Communist Chinese allies (who seem to be more afraid of Trump's actions than Kim the Insane is). I'd guess there probably will be war between Kim the Insane and the US in the near future. Millions of Koreans and Americans could die in such a war, which could easily dwarf the American casualties of the Civil War and World War 2. North Korea would lose, but what happens after Kim the Insane is nuked to Hell is what would could turn this war into global Armageddon. China could attack the US if what's left of Korea unifies into a pro-American government. Russia could get involved. Al Qaeda and Daesh could end up with black market North Korean nukes and start using them on the West. It's a scary new world.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

July 26, 2017

Life is supposedly a long journey. If so, my journey in the last 6 months has been longer, bumpier, and more painful than most journeys have been. Since I last blogged, I spent a disastrous 3 months in Austin, Texas, working for my old warehouse, getting my old job back- and getting paid less and getting run out of the job after 3 months. I was planning on moving from Texas to either Pennsylvania or New Jersey when the warehouse job ended. Instead, I ended up in Maine with 2 job offers. I ended up working in a warehouse for a well-known Maine company, commuting from my current residence in Lewiston to Freeport.

I also got to visit family I haven't seen in years. I got to see my sister and nephew in Western Tennessee (the first time I've been in that state in over 20 years). I got to see my father's eccentric cousin in Franklin. The only relative in Tennessee I didn't get to see was my niece, who was finishing up her final month teaching in Cheatham County and who will be joining other family in Franklin next month while teaching at a better school. As far as I know, my niece has not experienced the horrors in her profession that most of my teacher friends in New York have (i.e. death threats, abusive students, flying metal trash cans, etc).

I next went to Chambersburg. After my uncle Rodger Barnhart's passing in March and my Godmother/Aunt Sally Bowling's recovery from a life threatening infection in April, I had to visit my surviving relatives. Most of them still remembered who I was. But as I've gotten older, they've gotten much older. It's scary thinking of Aunts and Uncles under the age of 80 needing to be in a retirement community. It's disturbing knowing that several of my relatives are battling dementia. I probably could have gotten a warehouse job in Chambersburg, but I had to at least go to the interviews I had waiting for me in Maine on June 12.

The first interview was a bit of a disaster. The second interview went well. And after spending $200 for 3 nights lodging, I was exploring my only affordable non-shelter option in Lewiston on June 13 when both called me and told me I was hired. One wanted me to start that week, the other started on the 26th. I ended up working for both until the 26th and staying with the warehouse job that was closer to Lewiston. Both paid $12 an hour, a record as far as hourly salary for me.

Now I'm getting used to long rural drives, cheaper car insurance, and wondering how much longer a 2001 Ford Taurus approaching 214000 miles can continue to hold on. It managed to get me from San Antonio to Austin to Tennessee to Chambersburg to New York to Maine over the last 7 months. Now I need the car to get to everywhere except Mass (my current residence is a block from Maine's only Catholic Basilica) and the library.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

November 13, 2016

What a difference a week makes. Last Sunday, I was updating my laptop computer at the McCreless Library for what I thought would be the last time as an American. Now, I'm debating on what to do with all that money I saved for an international move that thanks to Trump's victory won't happen this year.

I spent most of the last few hours updating my laptop at the library again. I updated and remastered 4 tracks from previous years on Soundcloud. It helps my still minuscule music career if I have professionally mastered tracks on my Soundcloud page. It would be great if there were a terrestrial radio station in San Antonio that actually played EDM or Dubstep or Trance. And I still don't know how to contribute to Channel 5's "Breakfast Tracks", bumper music they play during their morning newscast.

San Antonio seems to be politically divided, although not as violently divided as many other major US cities. Yesterday, the city's downtown was full of life, with the normal tourist hordes, a Veteran's Parade, the city's official car show, a Notre Dame/Army college football game at the Alamodome, and an anti-Trump rally that compared to most of the others disgracing this land was rather peaceful. Most of these other rallies are at the very least destructive, hateful and at worse, bystanders have been shot and police have gotten attacked. The DNC and liberal media have been unable to tell these protestors that the election is over, they lost, and they need to go home (or better yet, to Canada). Most of the protestors are leftist millennials. If these unruly youths are truly the future of this country and they want the same leftist anti-Catholic, anti-life, anti-economic-common-sense crap that the Democrats thrust upon the populace before this months election, then I may have to leave if they ever do take power again.

Between this broken country, my still messed up personal life, and my seriously ill uncle, maybe I need to pray more.

I did go to the evening Mass at the Cathedral last night. San Fernando Cathedral is one of the most welcoming Catholic churches I've ever been to. If a 300 year old church with a predominately Hispanic congregation can be so welcome to international and English speaking tourists, then maybe there is hope for this society.