Where to begin. Left The Hood on Ridgeline Drive the day before Thanksgiving, 2013. Moved back in with my fiancee for life, My Valerie, her roommate Ally and Ally’s freaking dog, off Tuckerman LN, The Gables. Rents reflected the name, $1,900/month + utilities. Burned thru most of my inheritance from my Mom’s estate, covering the Rent and Utilities. Me and My Valerie moved to Fireside Park Apartments in November, $1,250/month with Gas Heat and well insulated Brick and Block construction. $150/month combined Pepco and Washington Gas bills in January. Much better than the $450/month total (bullshit) electric Heat Pump “Das Vinter Haus” on Tuckerman.
Got out of the Hood just in time. The Daughter came home from her facility for wayward youth a few months earlier. The Son who got thrown out of his “wife”‘s place moved back in. The place on Ridgeline became “the place to be” in The Hood, 24/7/365. Blasting Rap music, dysfunctional Reality TV shows, drugs, and lots of pellet gun firing practice out in back of the apartment, and 10s of “guests” on the floor, out back, wall-to-wall. The Son’s 4-year-old son dumped off every weekend by Son’s would be ebony supermodel “wife” so she could party party party til she drops. Little Travon on his own, no food, no water, daddy passed out on the couch.
So, my Golden Years. Early Social Security retirement, $1,400/month after Medicare deduction. Medicare B and D cost almost twice what my Gov’t subsidized Obama Care cost me. It don’t go too far. At least now, with the more reasonable rent, me and Val aren’t rationing food or deferring minimal material needs.
My well-off Little Brother [big bucks IT manager with Symantecs, the Norton software guys] out in California and my sons have helped me out with cash when times got critical during the past several years. It’s good to have successful and financially secure grown children. My youngest gave me his 2006 Toyota Corolla in early November. (My 2000 Saturn L1 and former “Mobile Home” during my homeless guy days) died in Feb, last year. My very rich (well, not Trump rich, maybe a 5-percenter, not a 1-percenter) Little Sister and her hard working general contractor husband have a beautiful farm out near Poolesville. My Number One Sister, guaranteed job for life/lucrative retirement (retired) teacher and her even more lucrative guaranteed job for life/retirement (retired) Federal Civil Servant hushand are retired and living good. The hubby is working part-time. hoping to Double Dip by qualifying for Social Security, on top of his lucrative Federal retirement. Hey, it’s free money and you can’t be too rich. Get on that teet and suck it! My Middle Sister and her husband, retired teachers, are doing all right.
So, for a first-born Son in a big Italian-American family, held up as the one to be like, it’s been a humbling fall from grace. My assessment: (1) poverty really does suck, (2) being homeless makes it suck more, (3) rich siblings who loved you when you were helping them out financially/emotionally/and otherwise may not love you as much when you need help from them. In fact, that $500 that would let you keep your health care for another month (MHIP), buy your meds for diabetes, high Blood Pressure, and Cholesterol, for a month, or even just let you buy some groceries, that $500 may just be too much to ask of said siblings. ‘Big Bro, you gotta pull yourself up by your own boot scraps, like we did…’
Maybe the thing that sucks the most about poverty, the harshest lesson I’ve learned from my little unplanned, unwanted, and unanticipated Poverty Experiment, is enduring the harsh judgement of those who loved you and really know better, fellow liberal Democrats they all are. The shame and humiliation of begging for money to live another month, from people you loved, helped raise, lent and gave money to, for the decades you were rich, it is a bitter pill to swallow.
And now we have a filthy rich, vulgar, likely mentally disturbed, idiot in the White House. God help us all. OK, there is no god. It’s just an expression that means: We in some serious shit now!