Kissy Chris comes by while I am wiping the snow offa my Isuzu. It snowed last night, and it was cold out. So..she comes up to me, she’d slept in abandoned house last night. She starts brushing the snow off of the car with me, and says: “my toothpaste got frozen last night.” I say “let’s go up stairs and have some brisket.”
Upstairs. She takes off her gloves and says “you can stary warm if you put like 10 covers over you, keep your clothes on, and have the covers over your head.” She stayed there last night with Christine, age 64, and Black Pam. There are many “Pams”. There is Drunk Pam, there is Mexican Pam. Once, Drunk Pam socked me right in the eye while she was trying to rob me.
They put board and cardboard over the windows, so no one can get in, ‘cos they are afraid that the men will find them. The “men” homeless are often very- predatory. These women get raped, sometimes. These are not like the “Jessica Hahn”: rapes. These are most likely violent, forcible rapes. Chris says she has been raped before in such a way, and I believe her. She says they are not doing any drugs, they can’t afford them.
Drugs or no, to me it is not right that people should get- crapped on. They are American citizens. So WHAT did WE fight for in the military? To defend the Koch Brothers?
I get out the brisket that I made last night, it was on sale at the Mexican grocer. It wasn’t bad. I used this recipe to make it, it had simple ingredients. She eats some of it with her fingers, then she brushes her teeth. She has that black eye, and the weather is taking toll on her skin.
I tell her that I want to go there and photograph the abandoned house, she says.. “what, do you wanna get stabbed or hit with a baseball bat?” There are people watching these houses.. it is their turf. Chrissy had never been homeless before, well at least not this bad. She’d always found someone to let her a room.
Yep.. she really IS..kind of scandalous. But. it ain’t right.. it ain’t right she should go hungry and cold. She’s an American. An American citizen. Plenty of ex soldiers out there too. There is plenty of sin in this world, and plenty of hypocrisy. It really is kind of hard to sort out.
Later.. I take her down to the Hardware store get some fuel for the heater they are using. Dunno what type it is.. must be one of those infrared heaters, ‘cos it takes propane. Old Allen used to have one of those. He’d sleep in the cabs of rusted old trucks in the junkyard down in the east bottoms. Chrissy looks much worse for wear. With that black eye and wrinkled skin, she looks like an old ‘bo. She didnt used to look that way. Man.. there is nothing you can do for people. I wish I were- somewhere else, part of some other reality. Preferably- one where the people are well heeled.
In the checkout line, she always wants me to get her one of those magazines, like a little kid. It seems so incongruent. She needs some warm socks and underwear, not the latest gossip about Jennifer Aniston’s hair, or the heartbreak of Angelina Jolie. *groann*. Them things cost like three bucks.
Chrissy takes some old socks and plastic bags from the house to put on her feet. She is wearing these old tennis shoes. On the way back from the hardware store, we pick up Margaret, the wife of the guy downstairs. I couldn’t figure out what she was doing way the heck down at that end of the Avenue! She was waiting for the bus to change, so I pick her up.
I wanted to get Chrissy some boots at this going outta business place down there, but couldn’t get the guy to sell me a pair for $10. I don’t even know why I am messing around with Chris. I guess it’s like monkeys. One monkey will not let another monkey get hurt. I give her an orange up at the house, and that is my exact feeling. Like a monkey, sharing some food with another monkey.
There isn’t anything to discuss at all. We are eating, preening, and digesting. It’s called survival.