Getting back to the continued narrative of last year after a long hiatus of pimping my other writing mainly. Some of you may recall when last we left off I found myself sleeping on a patch of asphalt on an old abandoned highway on June 13th 2014. Between that time and July 2nd I faced the hardest stretch of time that I ever had to in my whole damn life. I needed a plan, I needed an out, I needed to catch on quickly to the ways people in the same boat as me managed out in the open. For those just coming into the story, you might want to check the About Me page when you first come in to get the summary if you don’t wish to go back to the beginning, or you can just wait until “The Diary Of A Vagabond King” is released this Summer.
Look on the bright side. I use to honestly fucking loathe that “Care Bear” statement. It is not a “Care Bear” statement, as I learned, sometimes it is the only Goddamn thing you have in life that will keep you from eating a bullet.
Raiders of the Lost Art. You do see some strange and wonderful things when you are forced to stop and actually look at the world around you. Somethings are a curse others a blessing. But like the world itself, it is time to move on.
Not ignoring everyone just trying to find a magic trick, for my own funds, one that won’t have the cops all over me like flies on shit.
On the bright side, you see that number? Do you know how many years it has been since anything with that number fit my ass? Hell my face is pointy again. I’m oddly starting to look like the old me.
I am too stubborn. If only the world realized that every time someone like me leaves it, a BeetleGeuse is born. Yeah imagine just when you think I’m dead and gone you see me behind you in the bathroom mirror flipping you a double bird with my eyeballs on the tips when you spit your used toothpaste down the fucking drain. 😀
The 18th became payday as I would receive funds for work I had done the previous Summer when I had got arrested. In retrospect I was damn glad that it came almost a year late because it came right when I needed it the most. Twice a day I would go and sit outside the library in town to siphon off of the free Wi Fi, it was the only way I had to keep in touch with anyone. Because I was trying to line everything up right and catch people online with enough time to get done what needed done to get the paid I spent most of that day walking the length of town,I would meet up with my brothers girlfriend at her work to send half to him to hold onto for safe keeping and to help me stretch it out. Damaged, tired,nasty, and broken on many fronts I would go that very night to get a cheap room at Knight’s Inn for two days to collect myself and begin my search for information to get an idea of what my next move would be.
So I know there must be some out there who be like OMG how can he make light of the situation he’s in like that? Does he not take anything serious? Yes, yes I do actually, but I grew up in the 80’s. A far less anal time period for starters and those carefree days taught me one valuable thing: No matter how bad shit is or will get….LAUGH BITCH! For starters what else can you do? And like I’ve said look for the humor and you will find the enjoyment in the worst of times.
The following post would be the first in what I was calling Diary Of A Vagabond King. In truth I figured I had told everyone, everything I was going through so far anyway, Why Stop? I was curious myself actually, since phones are everywhere and even a homeless bum is capable of having an online presence in this day and age I figured why not make use of the fact in order to show everyone how the other side lived. It not only helped me keep things in perspective, it also gave me something to focus on in the down time I would have plenty of that did not involve falling into the trap of giving up and staying shit faced drunk to deal with life as it had been dealt.
Diary of a vagabond king:
When your consistent source of support opens your eyes to the fact, that you’re not trying, just sort of going through the motions, it makes you have to stop and think. I said months ago, I was too damn tired to keep going, but shit only got worse. You reach a point where an end is more appealing than an outcome good or bad.
Expectations will get you killed. Desperation has a way of rendering you unintelligent. Even when you know better, you can’t help but cling to ANY bit of hope and that makes getting the rug pulled out from under you twice as bad. I have enough between the present and the last 16 years, I don’t need a reason to be reminded of the damages from the 19 years before that. Fuck the concept of a promised land, if there is a way out of this, it has to be made not found.
The preceding was the result of self meditation on the night of June 13, spent under a full moon on a lost and forgotten highway.
Diary of a vagabond king:
From the cover of my old composition book, that’s pages have long since been used for kindling, I make my first sign. I had a hideous twisting of my insides the whole time, that would be pride I believe.Can’t help but wonder how it all came to this.
As I head out, I happen along four guys sitting on the side of the forgotten highway, which I later found out was dubbed Hobo Alley. They tell me to have a seat and a drink. Under the normal run of things I would have passed, but it is always wise to gauge the people around you and I could tell a couple probably knew things that could help me round out a skill set that is still yet sorely incomplete.
We sat there for hours just shooting the shit, a task admittedly made easier for me by the two 25oz cans of Natural Ice. 😀 Learned me some shits though, alternative places to camp, what days to hit what dumpsters to find the most useful shit, how to make a hobo shopping cart grill for cooking and that while I could try the sign holding bit, my youth would be to my disadvantage.
My youth WAS in fact to my disadvantage, because after departing ( after I was damn sure I could walk straight too I must add) I stood with my bags and my sign, eating a carrot from my affordable .89 cent bag. It took less than a minute before I was run off by the cops…..ooops. Back to my original ground by the river.
Later that evening after setting up camp and camo stashing my shit, I came top side to my wi fi spot to check on things and get a cheap pack of hot dogs to cook by campfire, I ran into Kenny, one of the guys from Hobo Alley. 😀 I was led on a tour of this little shit town the likes of which I never knew, a tour what ended with more Natural Ice and vodka in another unknown cubby hole in town where no one seems to go. It was a trip watching that motherfucker start with four dollars and make three stops the last of which was Wendy’s, with full party supply and three dollars and he never stole a damn thing. 😀 Mad fucking skill boy I’m telling you. It’s all still so damn awkward for me, I was never a people person anyway.
Took my time getting back to camp, it was well after dark but between being in the open at times and on rough ass terrain when I wasn’t I needed to be extra careful and still busted my damn shins, not by clumsiness but rather by slick ass mud. Couldn’t start my fire for a few hours until my first attempt had warmed things at the core enough to overcome the dampness.
Interesting day, one that was needed. Not that I needed to be that shit faced by any means, just the strange paradox of being far more welcomed and accepted by a group who knew not shit about me than I am by most people I actually know, isolation can suck ass…But then so does waking up at dawn cold, damp, half drunk, half hung over with a hip that felt like broken glass.
The preceding took place Saturday June 14.
Shayne: Necessary, to improvise, to use what you have, and learn from those who know more, that’s how surviving is done when you’re in a situation where you can’t just be either a mountain man or a street bum, but rather a hybrid of both. 😀 It gets CONSIDERABLY better in the next few days though.
Diary of a vagabond king:
Most of Sunday is spent in recovery and gearing up for the week ahead. You see most things that can any good for someone in my situation only seem to operate during weekdays.
The following morning I gather all my shit situate it to fit into two bags instead of three, pitch what is left of the third bag that took one Hell of a beating, fill up two water bottles, long journey ahead. Scavenging has turned up little, so fuck it, I’ll walk to my destination. To the shelter, from there I figure I can muster some cheaper way to hit the DHHR by Tuesday. Go straight to the source. If there’s a way back that’s as good a place as any to start. It’s a hot motherfucker I will not lie. I firmly believe at least 20% of my body no longer constitutes as Caucasian but rather boiled lobster. 4 and a half hours later I make my destination, only to find a shit ton of people like me sitting around outside. They are, both of them maxxed out. Neither seems to have information of any programs to help jump start a come back.
Well shit, take note, there is need, real need to aid these fucking places to be more than a band aid for a boo boo that requires stitches. No one seems to have knowledge. It occurs to me that I should have known that much already from my time at the theater, couldn’t tell you how many times, we got people thinking it was still a church looking for help, after coming from the YWCA who did the same and only thing we could do which was refer them to the other shelter. Funny how you never stop to think about shit like that until it finally happens to you.
I plan to wait it out, but first things first, to the town center to charge my phone and use the wi fi to send a response to my brothers message. I hang out until I find out overflow is a no go either. Charleston is not the fucking place to be caught like this, the places that are not out in the open are the same places people get knocked in the fucking head for everything they have on them.
Think you damn fool, stop making this harder. Why would I make it harder, that’s what Johnny Law Dog is for, here he comes now, to get my name, my story, and wish me luck. Okay that was cool of him, but my name is what he was after, great so now if some other cocksucker in a hoodie knocks someone in the head while I’m in town, I’m a suspect. Fuck this, tired or not I head back to familiar territory, I now KNOW Marmet and that counts for a lot.
After rolling into a familiar underpass I stop for a few hours to rest until dawn. Something in my right leg is flaring up, swelling, that would either be a bite or the beginning stage of an infection, either way it is making that leg harder to walk on. I stroll into town, back to my item drop location, you see not only is shit too damn heavy to just be lugging around, it paints a target on you.
After awhile, I head out to my regular wi fi spot. Still so damn determined, to DIY this shit huh? No learned me a fine lesson there, I finally do what I should have done from the damn start, ask for a fucking ride. I get another message this one with better news, a payday that was almost a year in the making for work done, right when I got arrested, So much shit went down back then that I lost track of it, stopped thinking of it myself.
That night the network, my network was set in motion again. A real pick me up, I refrain from heading back to Hobo Alley, nice people they may be, but with my current mind set, it’s also a trap, isolation is better a new plan has been formed and requires my undivided attention. So yes I am heading to the DHHR the next morning and yes because of that I took my one dollar shampoo and shit into the bathroom at Wendy’s and pulled a quick clean up job before darting out the damn door, fuck it, what would you do?
That night as I wait for morning I sit by some rocks, wearing gray and black with my hood up grin emoticon I hadn’t really thought about it but at night I must have blended in rather well with my surroundings. A boy and a girl came up on me, I’m pretty sure that it was the movement of my head as I looked up that they caught before anything else because they were only about a foot and a half away from tripping over me when I hear a cry in unison of OH SHIT!!!! I apologized for spooking them, they were cool as they apologized for invading my space, everyone had a good laugh and as they went their way I could not help but smile. Yep I still got it, fucking ninja. Lol
The preceding covered events from Sunday June 15 through Tuesday June 17
Diary of a vagabond king:
Some might say that 7:30 comes awful early, but that doesn’t seem to be the case once you find yourself getting used to waking up around 5 even without an alarm. I meet my brother at Exxon and it is off to the DHHR. I am the first one in the damn door, I expect to go to a window, but instead I find a bookish little man sitting at a table as soon as I walk in. He hands me an EBT application and directs me to a side table to fill it out. I finish and take it back to him where he asks for my ID to copy it. This is new, I thought I was supposed to sit and wait to be called in the back. Realizing that isn’t going to happen I start asking the man about other programs and such, especially centered towards employment. Without skipping a beat, the man hands me my stamped copy of the EBT application, a sheet of paper with a shit ton of phone numbers and KRT pass to the transit mall. Fuck it, I’ll take it, it’s stil a victory in my book. Speaking of victories, I waited for that bus longer than the time I spent inside….Holy Shit!! next to the DMV, the DHHR has always had one Hell of a waiting limit.
I limp to the bus stop where I go over the paper with the phone numbers, I notice Workforce is on the list. I think for a minute, aside from my stint on unemployment after CAMC, I only ever used them for job search, I’d go pick a few things that applied or looked good, get my referral slips that for all the good they have ever done me, I might as well have used them as toilet paper…..But I never asked if they had any placement or training programs for those with jack shit. My next move just got plotted.
I got to Workforce 3 minutes too late to slip into that mornings WIA training process for eligibility checking. I got scheduled for June 27.
I roll back into base ( Which is what I call the park in Marmet, it has a bathroom, a place to charge my phone, and is my access to my camping spot on the river bank.) sometime just after 1:00. I have to give this fucking leg a break, so I go take breakfast down on the fishing pier, where I doze off for about an hour, luckily the shade holds where I am, or I would have woke up charred black instead of boiled lobster.
Sometime before 4:00 I get the message that could not have read better to me if it had been written by the scribe of God. The payday is wired. I take half and send the other half to my brother for safe keeping. I carry my ass to Knights Inn. I need somewhere clean to do the good old world salt treatment to my wound….and trust me, nothing boosts morale quite like a shower and a bed, real food helps as well. But first business before pleasure. I go get a phone card to reactivate this damn phone, no more wasting time hunting wi fi, this bitch once more works wherever 3g network gets a signal.
The next day is spent in bed, mending the fucked up leg, doing research and making calls. I found a hidden gem, that I was never told about Covenant House, I was always told first about the food pantry, and clothing vouchers, but it would seem they also have a housing program, alas that is now Mondays agenda, I used to like weekends. Fuck it, I’m patient….well more than I often sound anyway. But lets do the list of improvements now shall we? EBT means no longer having to spend most of my damn time scavenging for the most basic of needs, it also means being able to stretch and save cash funds. I have a phone again, so my communication ability is no longer limited. I walk with a slight gait once more rather than a full on limp. Morale is restored and I still have that WIA appointment Friday. My next move is set and there’s forward momentum. It turned out to be a good week despite the loss of three days between my fucking stupidity and WV day. It’s all good. 😀
The preceding took place between Wednesday June 18 and Friday June 20.
Bored as all Hell, since my phone is back this means that I can access my digital library from the Flixter app….thought I might change up from last weekends agonizing activities. Okay so honestly I just want to see if I can make myself scream like a little bitch by watching the new Evil Dead while camping. Challenge accepted.
So, How the Hell does one shave in the woods without a mirror? In this day and age that’s what a cell phone is for. Score one for finding a new practical use for the vanity of selfies.
Son of a Bitch, it’s ONLY 2:30. Screw you Sunday, you’re gonna have to end at some point, no matter how much you want to take your sweet ass time about doing so.
Well Hell lets pass the time a little shall we? I’ve already given you the lowdown on everything that has taken place since my return to the wild. So now lets flesh things out a bit, by giving helpful tips just in case by crazy random happenstance you find yourself in a similar ordeal. The picture below is of one of three item drop locations. It is where my shit gets stashed when I don’t need it for where I’m traveling. There are a few keys to using these.
First it can never be openly visible or your shit may not be there when you return. Two: try to make sure there isn’t JUST one way to and from the location. You won’t always have the luxury of there not being anyone around to see you go into a spot with shit and come right back out without it. Three: pick a landmark, always remember THAT landmark, so you don’t fuck up and camo your shit so well that you outsmart yourself. Oh yeah and if you stash food, make it canned goods, something that won’t just draw a raccoon to tear into your shit. I don’t even bother getting bread, not only for this reason but because, a lot of it will get wasted with no way to keep it from drawing the dampness around you.
Shayne: One last point to make, if you are going to sit around and write about you item drop, do it somewhere else. In other words never linger too long with your shit, or you end up like my dumb ass that is hiding behind a tree at this very moment trying to will this fucker that is 20 feet away to leave.
This is not a picture of the actual fish, it was gutted and it’s head separated when I got woke up to it this morning, but one of these fucking things was pulled out of the river last night near my camping spot. It was smaller than the one pictured here, maybe four feet total. The guys ( one of them I’ve gotten to know on this end of town) carried it in a big Styrofoam cooler. What the Hell is this thing? I’ve never seen anything like it pulled out of here before.
Turns out the fish was a Gar.
Briars +darkness = me looking like one of those people who cut themselves when they’re sad. Rock+ darkness = me saying why oh why did it have to be the same goddamn leg.
Getting real damn tired of kicking my own ass out here.
Diary of a vagabond king:
I figured maybe I should try a phone call first. The call did not help, I have to go in person, maybe tomorrow I can use this leg without it staying on fucking fire. It was a downer….and proof that I am still a virgin in this new life. Last night I got my ass handed to me, because I broke the first rule, be aware in the moment, to NOT let your mind wander into territory that will do me no good. Should have watched my fucking step.
Got a visitor on my side of town from Hobo Alley. Kenny grin emoticon we jawed a couple hours about where we came from, to be here. We laughed because he became the fourth person this week that I scared the fuck out of when he happened across me in the dark. You’re good people man, I got your back, you watch. I’m gonna go get me a beer. And with those words he went off doing his thing. grin emoticon My leg, and what feels like a pinched nerve in my rib cage still hurt like a bitch, but I had to admit it helped seeing that I’m not out here on my own, there are those who know the story, because it’s not unlike their own.
I think of him, the guy in the house at the end of the road around the corner from the park, who offered water as I came back into town the other day, the GAR catcher grin emoticon who said to me if you need anything man come on over, these are hard days for everyone. The lady who just passed by who said the same thing, after telling me it’s hard living outside, I know, I’m lucky at the moment. She lives in the house on the corner here, with no electric. It dawns on me in that moment, it should have always been them.
Say whatever the fuck you will about those with nothing, or next to it. But from what I’ve seen, from where I sit I can honestly say aside from those who have always stood by me, that I have truly found a better class of losers than I have ever known or been a part of. And it should have always been them that I put my effort into, they deserve it, the difference any help these people get is REAL, not smoke and mirrors, not I give a shit about you but the very mention of you is a conflict of interest……Yeah, you damn right my eyes are open now. I might be pissed at this lot in life, if I didn’t have every reason in the world to be so damn grateful for it. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a bit of forgotten history to burn.
Dated Monday June 23rd
TCH: When you finally get out of this mess I think, “Diary of a Vagabond King” is the perfect title for your book/memoir!< Yes I do take peoples advice regardless of it looking like I don’t usually. 😀
RN: Shayne Workman they/you aren’t losers!?!! You ALL ARE THE WINNERS; you have found what life is really worth and ppl that are as enlightened as you have become. Most couldn’t survive the way you/they have. BUT-
TIME IS COMING QUICKLY FOR ALL(99%) TO EXPERIENCE THE TRUTH ABOUT THEMSELVES ALSO! And it won’t be pretty or funny- it’ll be pathetic !!!
No one has to lift a hand- GRANDMOTHER IS starting to fight back to HEAL. Mankind must pay the price for what most have wasted.
And that was it. Little did I know when I hit the post button this would be the one that would spawn a war with the assholes from my former life. I would spend the next week taking little pot shots, everything from little offhand snide ass remarks that people just miraculously start putting up when something has offended their sorry asses to receiving likes for posts where fucked up shit was happening to me. I was pissed to no end, but I was also far too preoccupied with really real important shit to bother. I would endure this for a week without retaliation before finally making a statement in an effort to smooth things over while making sure they know they have no place to say shit all things considering.
Diary of a vagabond king:
Holy shit son, it’s been one Hell of a week of where the wild things are. 😀
Before I get into the minor events of a week that was mainly spent recovering from damage at the hands of my own damn stupidity YAY!!! I want to clarify something: Blanket statements made in comparison between the world I live in now and the one I come from DO NOT constitute a direct assault. Read the history, it doesn’t even fit the fucking MO, I come a Hell of a lot more vicious and a damn site more specific when that is my intent. In fairness, in some cases I have made somethings easy to assume, for THAT and that alone do I apologize. My statement was a reflection of MANY experiences on both sides of this personal downfall involving MANY people and I stand by my statement. Unless you’ve been me and been where I’m at now, you can’t rightfully question the validity of it. So final note Get over it…or don’t, that’s your choice now, not mine. I have too damn much riding on the next couple weeks to worry anymore about the hurt feelings of others than they do of mine.
Pending, the SNAP card as of Thursday which was 8 days after my visit to the DHHR. Pending: eligibility for housing assistance from Covenant House. In short everything is in a limbo of unspecified time span.
My leg bled for four fucking days, 😀 I guess it was just it’s time of the month. My biggest problem in terms of mobility was actually the pinched nerve in my rib cage that shot spider webs of pure fucking fire across my chest and back if I moved my arm the wrong way. With a couple exceptions mainly going to my po box and take care of laundry, I forced myself to stay down most of this week a daunting task when you are bored as shit with nothing to do and are used to staying on the move. I’m happy to say I’m all better now.
Now we’ve had monster fucking fish pulled from the river. A visitor black cat that scared the shit out of me when it came up and sat beside me three feet away before I realized it was even there. 😀 I guess there’s a better ninja out here than even me, battle tested even. Ever see a bitch fight between a cat and a ground hog? I have, funny shit especially when each decide the other just freaks them out so damn bad that they both break and run for it. And late last night I witnessed a girl with a fishing pole and tackle box get benched by a charging opossum. It darted down the hill after putting her in her place and making her scream.
The weekend is here again, it’s time to start working a plan B since I have no idea when or if any of my other shit will go through. Oh yeah and my new indispensable tool, best damn 3 dollars ever spent. Wish I had better or at least more prominent news to share but in my defense I’m lucky I had this much in a week that was spent patching up a screw up. And Morpheus quit hanging up every time I answer the damn phone, I keep getting calls from the movie number, you know any number that starts with 555. It’s pissing me off at least 7 times a day now.
The preceding took place between Tuesday June 24 and Saturday June 28.
TCH: Glad you’re feeling better and baby stepping toward services to get you on your feet. Wow! Just… Wow!
Shayne: I don’t have to say “never say die” Something in my damn DNA just won’t let me quit, even when I want to. In some ways it’s kinda annoying, I keep saying I was put here to piss people off, I suppose that includes even me. 😀
TCH: Lol! Whatever it is that keeps you going, be glad for it. Maybe some day you can look back and say, “I can’t believe that was me. I can’t believe I was there. I can’t believe I survived.” That is my wish for you anyway.
Well I tried to sleep but the damn rain just wouldn’t let it be.
So please allow me to share my annoyance with the world, through statement. Lol
The bible thumpers missed one you know, clearly naivety is the 8th deadly sin.
JD: Rain calms me down
Shayne: Normally I would agree, but that seems to be the catch to having the biggest damn master bedroom you ever did see, it comes with the largest leaky ass roof….EVER.
JD: I’m sorry.
No sleep, scavenger night. Damn system takes too long to be of any real help.