Saturday, June 06, 2009

Homeless - How Do You Recover?

The other night Dena and I were standing in line for the Ira Glass NPR event and a scruffy looking guy with a long beard walked up to the people in front of us. He asked what the line was for. They turned their back and ignored him. He asked us the same question. He looked homeless but not crazy although he had crossed Wilshire in the middle of the street and just about got hit by several cars seconds before this. After a momentary pause, I decided to answer him. He then asked several other questions about NPR ending with where on the dial was NPR. You have to be old school to ask "where on the dial".

As I write this blog I'm staring at a drawing I purchased last week from a homeless woman (well I assume she's homeless) that often sets up shop on the corner of Crescent Heights and Wilshire. She sells her drawings which are either charcoal or crayon and are quite bad truth be told. I bought one from her the other night, $ 10. She's scruffy but appears to be as well kept as I imagine she's able, her clothes are very old but seem well cared for.

These moments in time add up to a terrible National crisis. Sure, some homeless people are a little crazy, the Federal and State governments haven't cared for these middle of the road crazy people since Reagan put them all on the streets. But what about the others? What about the person that has lost their job which led to losing the apartment which lead to burning bridges with friends? What about the person who has no where left to turn to? How do they recover? How do they interview? How do they even get an interview? If they got a job, how would they afford to get started in the job with clothes and getting to work? It seems impossible.

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