Use Fire

Q. Do you know who I am?

A. Yes.  It took me a while, but I figured it out.

Q. So why have you summoned me?

A. Because I am miserable.

Q. Why are you miserable?

A. What a stupid question.  Isn’t it obvious?

Q. I don’t know.  Is it?

A. Of course it is!  I can’t seem to get back to where I was before March 4th of this year.  Try as I may, everything I do turns to dirt.

Q. What happened on March 4th?

A. I finished the script to my musical, Eden in Babylon.  

Q. Isn’t that a good thing?  

A. In and of itself, yes — a very good thing.  I had been blocked up for over three years, over something stupid.   Something a friend of mine did — or a former friend — or someone whom I thought was a friend.   It’s hard to explain, but once I got past the block, I finished the script with a vengeance.

Q. A vengeance?  Against whom?

A. Against the guy I just told you about — the guy whom I thought was my friend — who ripped it apart – ripped it to shreds, assassinating my character in the process.  I finished it, not despite his scathing condemnation — but because of it.  I wanted to show him what I was made of.  And then —

Q. And then?  

A. I dedicated the musical to him.

Q. (trying not to laugh) How masochistic can you possibly be?

A. It wasn’t masochism!  More like — manipulation.  I thought that, somehow, if I dedicated the script to him, it would soften his heart toward me.   He would relax about it all, and then sit down with a glass of wine on a Sunday evening, and read the script more closely, with caring, savoring every word.  He would be willing to believe that it just might be a good thing after all — since I had (after all) dedicated it to his very self.  Finally, with an approving smile on his face, he would at last come to appreciate what I was trying to do with it — before just assaulting my integrity and writing me off, along with my hard-earned labor of love, as though I were just — just — scum.  

Q. Scum?

scumbagA. You heard me — scum!   I keep thinking about all these rich people I went to high school with.  They think I’m scum because I wound up on the streets — or maybe I was scum beforehand, because my parents were poor.  I don’t know — if I hadn’t have been a piano player, they’d have never given me the time of day.  And now, even with the piano playing, it’s not powerful enough to negate that image — the image of the guy begging for change on the streets — even though I never really begged, but — 

Q. But wait – what does it matter what they think?

A. What do you mean, what does it matter?  Of course it matters!  I’m trying to produce a musical — not just trying to be some random guy who’s into not caring what anybody thinks of him, as though that’s what he needs to maintain his mental health, or some other boring, irrelevant proposition.  Of course I care what people think.  I need an audience — I want them to think well of me, or at least — of my work.  

Q. But what does it matter what he thinks?

A. Lifelong friend?  Theatre Arts professor – reputable?   Certainly, his opinion counts.

Q. But does it count enough for you to have let it condemn you?  Snag you for three years?  And then want to dedicate the show to him?   Have you even heard from him since you did so?

A. No — he won’t talk to me.   He hasn’t talked to me since shortly after he condemned me.

Q. Why would that be?

A. I guess because — well — I sort of accused him of not having carefully read the script.  I said something snide, like – maybe he gave me twenty-five minutes at the most on a busy day, feeling pressured.  I might have pressured him.  I was stuck at page 58 — eager to get feedback, to be encouraged . . .  to move forward . . .

Q. Wait wait — you think he didn’t read the script very carefully?

A. No – not at all.  He might not even have read any of it.  His comments were all the kinds of things he could have said had he only skimmed it briefly.  All except for the big one, where he insinuated that I was some kind of over-the-top political activist, or grandiose sociopath, or whatever it he perceived my main character to be.

Q. Now Andy — let’s get down to it.  Do you think that he even read your script?

A. No, I do not.  He did not read the script.

Q. Then wouldn’t that explain his silence toward you?

A. How so?

Q. Could it not be that he simply is shying away from you because he doesn’t want to fess up to the fact that he dissed you so flagrantly?

A. Cowardice.  It’s occurred to me.  But I am not one to complain about cowardice.  I myself am just about the wimpiest bloke on the block.  I struggle to promote myself; I faint at the slightest trace of adversity.  I can’t even get a gig playing the piano anymore, I’m so timid about letting them know my interest.   I’m just not courageous, like I used to be.  

Q. Like you used to be?  When?

A. When I first decided to live outdoors – to be homeless by choice — in Berkeley, in April of 2011, six years ago.  I was brave then.  I spoke my mind.  I was inspired.  I didn’t just cave in to the Mainstream.   

Q. And you have been “caving in to the Mainstream” lately?

A. Yes.  I’m becoming passive, like most people in the Mainstream.  I’m starting to just “go with the flow” — even if the flow is decidedly downstream.  I do nothing to attack or challenge my circumstances.  I don’t fight like I used to.  I just – shrug my shoulders, and let it all happen, even as I descend deeper and deeper into hell.

Q. And this descent all began on March 4th?

A. Yes.  I had reached the highest height.  I had finally finished Eden in Babylon – or, a first rough draft, at the very least — after all those years of blockage and despair, feeling mocked by friends and family, and by prospective producers everywhere — I had reached the pinnacle —

Q. And then you fell down?

A. I fell off.  I plummeted down to the dunes.  I sank in the quicksand.   I still sink, ever lower, even to the heart of the earth.

if_all_else_fails____by_picolo_kun-d9p190aQ. Do you know the story of Icarus?

A. I do.  I even wrote a song about him, years ago.

Q. Have you heard of the Icarus Project?

A. I have.  I believe I receive their newsletter.  I pay them no mind though.  They all seem crazy to me.

Q. But don’t they have something in common with you?

A. Well – looking into them a bit more closely, they do appear to be more-or-less like myself.  They’re activists.  They would like to see transformative change in society.  Many are Artists.   Many have Bipolar Disorder.  

Q. Do you have Bipolar Disorder?

A. Ha!  They say that I do.

Q. Do you believe them?

A. When I’m not too busy being offended by them, yes, I do find a shred of truth in their undying diagnoses and psychobabble.

Q. Then why not revisit the Icarus Project?  

A. You bore me.  I would have liked your suggestion to have more to do with my regaining the courage I lack.  The courage with which I once gave up everything I had — and chose to be homeless in Berkeley.

Q. Will you regain courage by returning to the streets of Berkeley?

A. Probably not.  Especially since I’d be escaping all the things I’m afraid of at Friendship Square.

Q. What are you really afraid of, Andy?

Short pause.

A. Myself.  I’m afraid of — my own self.  Afraid of where my mind might take me.  Indeed, where it has already taken me.  Whenever I am not consumed in a creation about which I am passionate, my mind takes me to deeper forms of darkness than I’d thought imaginable.   It’s the difference between day and night with me.   Day — and night.

Q. And now?

A. Deepest, darkest night.  It’s unfathomable — I can scarcely even see where I’m going.  It pains me.   For seven months, from when I first moved here at the end of July, till the beginning of March, I was shining as bright as the day.   Since then – my God, it’s been almost six months now — it has been nothing but the dreaded, dead of night.

Q. When will it end?

A. Will it ever?

Q, Won’t it?

A. I suppose a new day will dawn.

Q. Doesn’t it always?

A. Has so far.  But all my efforts at seeing the light of day have failed me.

Q. And when all else fails?

Long pause.

A. Use fire.  Flame the fan of the sun yet to rise.  Light the heart of the night with fire.

Use Fire!

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Anything Helps – God Bless!

I Want to Be Homeless

I have these two friends I’ll call Randy and Roger.  Both of them are what I would call “rich.”  Neither of them would call themselves “rich.”  Most people would call them “rich.”  But they live in these insular, wealthy worlds in which everybody with whom they contact would be at least considered “upper middle class.”  Occasionally, they fish out a poor person and help that person out, just to assuage their guilty consciences.  But neither of them will ever do the one thing that a poor person needs the most, which is to offer that person respect.

Neither Randy nor Roger ever listens to me.  They both constantly lecture me.  If either of them does, on rare occasion, appear to be listening, they show no confidence that the viewpoint I am espousing might be valid.  Instead, they sort of look blank for a moment or two, and then go on lecturing me.  I have known Randy for almost fifty years now, and Roger for twenty years.  But there was a time when the three of us were all in the same boat.  We were all what I would now call “rich,” and what in those days we might have referred to as “upper middle class” – or at least “middle class.”  For me to be making $50,000 a year and have $13,000 saved up in an IRA and a market rate savings account definitely does not spell “poor.”

Now I’m getting around to something.  A while back, when I was frustrated that I couldn’t find singers for my project who would work for free, I sent a joint email to Randy and Roger, asking them if they could help.  Roger replied by suggesting I was having an “episode.”  Randy did not reply, but the next time I spoke with him, he insisted I should be “taking my meds.”  I am searching for my email in my Sent Folder now, among myriad other emails addressed to one or the other of these guys, and I can’t find it.  I’ll be sure to show you it once I do, but I can assure you there was nothing in the email that a reasonable person would hold to be an indication of a mental health crisis.

Not to mention, taking my “meds” isn’t going to help me find the singers I need for the project.

KJV_Luke_16-26One of the points I often stress (that neither Randy nor Roger will listen to) is that it is unfair to those of us in the poorer socio-economic classes to be told that our abject poverty is the result of, or indicative of, a “mental health condition.”  Granted, we all have our mental health issues.  But there have been so many times when I have had a problem that could simply have been solved by money, and that a rich friend of mine, unwilling to let go of their money on my behalf, attributed to my “mental health disorder.”

Another thing I’ve noticed about these guys is that neither of them has a “concept” of respect.  I once very respectfully asked Roger to stop introducing me to people as “bipolar.”  I told him that this is a personal matter, and that I had mentioned my alleged mental-health diagnosis to him, because was a trusted friend.  

So – what do you think Roger did?  Nothing at all, in terms of actually honoring my request.  He continued the same pattern, introducing me as “bipolar” to every person with whom we mutually came into contact.  One day he sent me a copy of an email he sent to a Choir director, trying to get me a job as an accompanist, which contained the words: “Andy does have bipolar disorder, but he still can be trusted.”  Did I get that job?  Of course not!  On to the next applicant.

Similarly, when I asked Randy to kindly leave all talk about psychiatric medications I should be taking to my doctor. my therapist, and I, nothing at all changed. Instead, he ramped into high gear, and indulged such talk even more so.  Why?  Well, this is my point:

People in the higher socio-economic classes who feel inwardly guilty over the plight of those less privileged than they will invariably attribute functions of abject poverty to those of anything other than abject poverty in order to avoid the guilt they would have to face if they saw these factors for what they are.

The past few days, I have been so angry at both of these old friends of mine, it has really weighed me down.  Because I’m a Christian, I know I have to forgive these guys.  But how do you “forgive” somebody whose behavior never changes?  They seem to act as though there is nothing about themselves that should ever change.  Their money entitles them to all kind of behavior that, if it were me, I would certainly want to take a look at, if somebody pointed it out to me.  

Something tells me that I’m supposed to just let go of the whole idea, but it irks me that they both claim to like my music so much, and yet when it comes down to my financial need to produce this demo, not only will neither of them budge an inch to help me, but they have to attribute my legitimate request for help to some kind of “mental health crisis” or “episode’ on my part.  It just seems that if they were really my friends, they wouldn’t need to belittle me like that.  So I’m bipolar.  So what?  They’re not my damned psychiatrists, for God’s sake.

Here’s the thing about my two old friends that gets me the most: Randy and Roger have never met each other.  Yet they live three blocks apart.    To me, that’s just insane.  How can they possibly be two of my closest friends, and live so close to each other, and over a twenty year period of time never once think it a good idea to meet?   It just makes me sick to think I ever lived the life I once lived.  Being poor isn’t a whole lot more fun than being homeless.  In fact, being homeless was a lot more fun!  If things don’t get better for me financially, if I can’t find another job around here, I think I’ll just pack up and go back to Berkeley and live outdoors.   Why not?

Homeless-ManHere at Friendship Square, I am forced to hang around every felon, ex-con, tweaker and sex offender that my landlord sees fit to rent to.  I’m not like that.  I’m an Artist.  I want to write.  I want my space.  But they won’t give me my space.  Not anymore.  In a little over a year’s time, I somehow, though all I wanted was space, wound up knowing everybody in all forty apartments.  

So much for all those prayers I thought had been answered.  In the eyes of this small, narrow-minded Northern Idaho community, I am no different than any of the other people hiding out on Friendship Square.  If this town that calls itself the “Heart of the Arts” truly had any heart for the Arts, they’d have embraced me long ago.  Instead they branded me.  I’m unemployed.  I’m low life.  Will I ever get a job again?  I should never have quit that church job!  At least it gave me an identity.  I could say I was working.  I wasn’t just a bum.

I’m tired of it.  I want to move forward with my project.  Since I left my job in mid-April, I’ve spent the latter half of each month starving.  Starving!!  Would I be starving on the streets of Berkeley?   Hell no!  In Berkeley, there are thirty-five free meals a week — many of them with unlimited free refills of Pete’s coffee.  And not only that – but in Berkeley, there is inspiration.

I keep trying to pretend that moving indoors was a good thing for me — but it’s not in my blood.   I’m tired of not being able to move forward with my project.  I’m tired of rich people dismissing my need for financial help as some kind of “mental health issue.”  I’m tired of waiting.  I’m tired of having to kiss up to rich guys to make money I need — either for the project — or just to go on living.  I’m sixty-four years old.  I brought up a daughter and a stepdaughter – halfway anyway, or at least I tried.  I’m tired.  I’m old.  I’m tired.  I’m old.  Rich people have everything.  I’m sick of it.

Three more days till I get my pay.  I want to just hit the road.  I want to be me.  I’m tired of living in a box.  I want to be homeless.  I want to be free.   

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Anything Helps – God Bless!

Jim the Janitor

Now Jim the Janitor is not the brightest fellow I’ve ever met.  He seems to have some boundary issues, as well as an extreme insecurity with regards to his personal and social relationships. This causes most people to write him off as, quite frankly, a “creep.”   I could elaborate, but it is not important.

What is important is this.  I used to be very bothered by Jim the Janitor.   When I first moved to Friendship Square, it seemed he would not stop knocking on my door, often at odd hours.   But eventually, I began to notice that the Janitor had some very good qualities about him — qualities that I have lacked.

For one thing, I have never once seen him lose his temper, or break out of his even keel.  So I asked him one day how he manages this, especially knowing that he faces the same difficulties faced by myself and all other poor people in this society.

GodHe replied: “I always let it go.  I always give it to God.”

I marveled at this.  For I had noticed that whenever he tries to quote a Scripture, he often gets it wrong, sometimes attributes something to Paul that was actually written by James, or even quotes something from a book other than the Bible, seeming to think it is in the Bible.  But I ceased to correct him after a while, because I became more interested in what he was trying to get across, than in the authenticity of his sources.

So the other night, I was sitting in Greg’s apartment two doors down from me, having a casual conversation with Greg, and a not-so-casual conversation with Jim. (I have noticed that Jim never engages in casual conversation.  Everything he says has to be in some way spiritual, which annoys many people.)

Suddenly, Jim pointed his finger at me, and in a burst of enthusiasm, he initiated the following dialogue:

Jim: (excitedly) Andy!  I know what your entire problem is!!

Andy: (amused) You don’t say?  Do tell.

Jim: You’re a rich man!

Andy: (incredulously) Uh . . . rich man?   How so?

Jim: You know how God says that the camel can’t go through the eye of the needle that the rich man is trying to get through, or something like that?

Andy: (thumping his Bible) “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than it is for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of Heaven.”

Jim: Yeah, that’s the one.   This is why you’re having so much trouble getting into the Kingdom of Heaven.  You’re a rich man.

Andy: (trying not to laugh) But Jim, I am not a rich man in the least.  I am rather a very poor man, just like you, or Greg, or anybody else in the building.

Jim: No Andy, I’m telling you — you are a rich man.  You are rich,  because you are rich in knowledge, and talent, and experience, and credentials.  Your knowledge and your talents are what keeps you from seeing the kingdom of God.

Andy: Wow — this is reminding me of a Scripture, where Paul says: “Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up.”  Knowledge feeds the ego.  Love feeds the flock.  Is that what you mean?  That kind of thing?

(Jim pauses for a moment, as though he had to think it over.)

Jim: Yeah.  That kind of thing.

Andy: Well – um – thank you!   Nobody’s ever told me that before . . .

“For consider your calling, brothers: not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth.  But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong;  God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God.”
–1 Corinthians 1:26-29

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Anything Helps – God Bless!

Heart of the Arts

No doubt you’re aware by now that I’ve resumed my search for singers for the Eden in Babylon demo wholeheartedly, after being discouraged at an earlier stage, and sinking into an unweildy period of deep depression that I am determined to demolish.  Well, I’ve got some encouraging news to share with you!

I think I’ve found a singer for the main female part on my song  The Very Same World.  She’s the new Choir director at my church, a young woman involved with the Lionel Hampton School of Music.   She sings very well — and the song is in her range, too.

In the clip below, she would come in solo at 1:44, where you may notice a key change.  Prior to that, she would have entered at 1:06 (the first hook) with myself and a second female vocalist of unknown identity.  I can sing the main male part from the start – for now – but I’ll need three more voices for the second hook, coming in at 2:32.  I faded this version at 3:02, but you probably get the point.  In the one minute and forty-two seconds that follow, it only gets bigger.  And it’s all scored on Finale: piano, six voices, and all other instruments.

I only told her that there “might” be money in it, since after all, I’m not sure.  If she didn’t mind doing this one for free, that would certainly be very kind of her.  However, as far as requesting she sing the other two songs on the demo, it doesn’t seem right not to be able to pay her something.  It would be good if I could just get a team of three men and three women together, including myself.  If would be great if I could rehearse three songs in three rehearsals adequately before we record — and then proceed to pay them what they’re worth.   If I really want to find talented singers who can help me create a demo of decent quality, I need to pay each of them at least $125 for the three songs I’d like to put on the demo.  Then I can at least begin to submit the show to theater companies — with or without a complete piano-vocal score — because they’ll at least have some idea what the music sounds like when they read the script.  

The words below are those of the second hook.  The complete lyrics may be found here.  I put a picture of the entrance way to my new and favorite city, just so you can get a grasp of how golden it is, for me.  If I can pull this thing off anywhere, I can pull it off in Moscow, Idaho – in the city I knew absolutely nothing about before I found my home here on July 27, 2016 — in the Very Same City where I was born.  

The Very Same World
That has seen tragedy
Will now see majesty
Stand at her door.
The Very Same World
That had been torn apart
Will show her golden heart –
Let her heart pour
All over the world,
And put an end to shame.
That world will bear the name:
World Beyond War.

The Very Same World

from the new musical Eden in Babylon,
exploring the effects of homelessness on the young people of 21st Century America.
Copyright © 2017 by Andrew Michael Pope

All Rights Reserved.

Please donate to Eden in Babylon.
Anything Helps – God Bless!

My Pitch

I have been flagrantly panhandling online for far too long for the sake of the advancement of my project.  I suck at marketing, sales, and advertising.  In fact, all those departments annoy the living daylights out of me.  I rock at playwriting, singing, playing the piano, writing music, musical direction, and homeless rights activism.  Blogging probably falls somewhere in the middle.

online-business-to-start-nowIt has occurred to me that if people perhaps knew why I’ve been asking for money, and where the money would be going, it might help me to get some donations from sympathetic people who can afford to do so.  So here goes.

I’m a person who has written a musical, and I would very much like to see this musical produced.  The musical paints a picture of the effects of homelessness on the youth of today’s America.  It is a very positive, upbeat show with an extremely encouraging, happy ending.  I have written the entire script, all of the music, and all of the lyrics.

But there I stop.  It will not be possible to move further toward the production of this musical without getting the kind of green stuff that doesn’t grow on trees.  This stuff is not known to come wafting through the window.  So I need to make a pitch.

There are numerous hurdles I need to surmount before anyone is going to take a look at this show — that is, anyone having the power to produce it.  First and foremost, I need to make an adequate demo recording of three or four of the songs, with real singers singing with their real voices, rendering the melodies and harmonies I have so meticulously created in the musical score that I have painstakingly composed, over a number of years, as I have been passionately absorbed in this project.

Talking around campus, and especially at the local School of Music, I get the feeling there are competent singers who will get behind me.  But like all singers, they will need to be paid.  My songs are catchy, urban, progressive show tunes, Broadway-influenced, and according to many, Broadway-bound.   However, it’s not the kind of stuff that even the quickest of studies are going to be able to pull off with minimal rehearsal.   No singer worth their salt is going to want to lend their voice to this endeavor without at least two or three rehearsals, prior to recording.  The very least I feel I should pay such a singer would be $125 for the whole shot.   I also need five singers to pull this off.  Even some of those five voices will be doubled or tripled, in order to replicate the chorus sections of the musical numbers that I have scored.

I am a serious composer who emphasized in Music Theory and Composition at a major Conservatory, and I hung out with my composition mentor, Dr. Stan Beckler, till shortly before the day he died.  My music draws from folk, classic rock, hip-hop and rap as well as from traditional comic light opera, but by no means does it entail your typical, tired old  1-4-5 progressions.  I have taken great pains to honor the genre of my youth, and bring fresh life and vigor to my favorite Performing Arts Form.  So basically, I need $625 to get started with this leg of the project, and create a decent demo of at least three songs.

I am technically situated so that I can record the singing over the instrumental tracks you hear on this page, eliminating doubled melody lines when necessary, to emphasize the live vocals.  This will sound a lot more authentic than one might think, and any irksome complaints regarding the “canned” use of the “electronic” sounds wll be instantly jettisoned, once my project is heard.   If I had the money to hire musicians and schedule studio time, I would probably go that route instead.  But I don’t have the money, and it would take quite a bit more rehearsal time — so this is the starting point that I propose.

It has not been easy to write these words tonight, much less paste them in three different spots on this web site, and blast them all across the Internet, to the expected ridicule of those who don’t believe me.   But because I know what I am doing — musically, artistically, and theatrically — in the realm of Musical Theatre where most of my lifelong experience lies, I can confidently tell you that I will back up my claims with action — as soon as I have the bucks to make it happen.

hippies singingWe can take it from there.  I am not above self-producing the show locally, and directing it myself.  But all these moves will require money, which a mere church musician in between jobs on a fixed monthly income cannot possibly conjure.  Rather, if I could conjure up that kind of capital, I’d neither have the time nor the energy to pursue my passion, and the dream of my lifetime will land in my grave.   Daylight’s burning.  I’m in my sixties already.  Let’s get a move on.  Let’s get this show on the road.

If you’ve been reading this blog, and listening to my music, and reading my posts about the Homeless Phenomenon in America, then get the word out to those who have the power — assuming you don’t have the power yourself.

And power to the people.  Power to all the people!  Power to the Homeless People of the United States of America.

Please donate to Eden in Babylon.
Not Just Anything Helps.

Hunted

The streets at midnight magnify the Hunted.
They are among the weirdest of the wanted,
By cops and hookers constantly confronted.
You do not want to be among the Hunted.

Hunted

from the new musical Eden in Babylon,
exploring the effects of homelessness on the young people of 21st Century America.
Copyright © 2017 by Andrew Michael Pope

All Rights Reserved.

Please donate to Eden in Babylon.
Anything Helps – God Bless!

 

Your Moment is Now

The “s-words” and “h-words” alluded to in the first sentence of the post below are not cuss words.  They stand for “shelter,” “services,” “homeless,” and “housing,”   At the time when I wrote this post, I had begun to practice the elimination of these buzz words from my vocabulary.  It was becoming increasingly important for me to live indoors again, and the use of any one of those “buzz words” would work against me when seeking an affordable rental.   A person who has not been homeless doesn’t tell his prospective landlord he is in need of “shelter.”  He merely says he’s looking for “a place to live.”   

“Your Moment is Now” was written two weeks before I moved into my present-day apartment in Northern Idaho, a little over one year ago.  It describes how I was kicked out of a homeless shelter for having caught a flu, and thereafter found that there was no hospital that would keep me overnight, and no friend or family member who would take me in — as illustrated in an earlier post.  Please be advised that I was running a 103 degree temperature at the time when I scribbled down these words.  I say that in the hope you will forgive me if my writing style wasn’t quite up to par. 

I’ll be brief without using either of the s-words or h-words.

About five days ago, I was kicked out of the “dormitory” for having contracted a contagious disease there. It’s not a big deal – it’s viral bronchitis. It is only contagious during the first 2-3 days.

Unfortunately, this has left me to deal with the situation in an outdoor environment. I’ve been twice to the doctor who says that I need to rest in bed for ten days and drink a lot of fluids.  Obviously, I do not have a bed in which to rest.

fluI petitioned for an overnight stay at the hospital but was denied it on the obvious basis that overnight stays in hospitals are not generally granted to people for conditions that can be taken care of at home. Obviously, I do not have a home at this time.

I believe that if I can stay inside in a bed for 72 hours, leaving only to hydrate and use the bathroom, I will probably recover. I am not recovering, unfortunately, in the outdoor realm of living. Frankly, I have only had a flu like this twice in the past fifteen years. The first time a friend of mine fronted me $700 so I could get two weeks in a hotel room. I paid her back according to terms, but she is not in that position right now. I also am declining to ask for money, which I feel would be crass.  To request actual short-term lodgings, on the other hand, seems to me to be only logical, and appropriate to the cause at hand.

My petition goes out to those who live in the Greater San Francisco Bay Area, and to the hearts of the Greater Humanity at Large. If somebody can provide so much as a floor with a rug for me to crash on for three days only, I will provide the Greater Humanity at Large with a lot more than said Humanity has evidently expected of me.

If not, I’ll subsist as usual, and perchance even survive. But know that when I say that I have watched numerous people in my position die needless deaths overnight, my statement is not hyperbolic.

People of compassion: now is your chance. Let me in. Let one of us in.  There are thousands upon thousands of Americans forced to sleep outdoors tonight.  Some will die tonight if no one lets them in.  Please, people of compassion — Let Us In.

Andy Pope
July 13, 2016
San Francisco, CA

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