Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Lasagna for one

Someone told me once that if you chew gum while cutting onions you won't cry. Whoever told me this must not have ever tried it because it doesn't work, as found out today while making supper. They also say if you cut the onion underwater you won't cry. I guess whatever it is that gets in your eyes stays in the water. While this make more sense than the gum chewing method, cutting an onion underwater to avoid tears seems a lot harder than it's worth.

I'll take the tears.

Dan, Nudie and I decided that we're gonna be homeless for a few weeks next summer. We're gonna get bikes and ride 'em from Boston to DC. We won't bring any money; instead, we'll sit on street corners with cardboard signs and beg. We'll spend a few weeks without shaving and maybe the same amount of time without showering. We'll sleep every night on the ground in a crusty sleeping bag. I'm not sure what intrigues me so much about throwing myself at the mercy of society, other than it just sounds like fun. Come to think of it, it seems much easier to survive being homeless than trying to survive otherwise. What do homeless people worry about? Getting something to eat. Finding a warm place to sleep. I'd venture to say that's about it (I wouldn't really know, I've never been homeless). I just think of all the things I worry about (money, school, relationships, etc.); I don't think they'd exist were I homeless. Granted, finding something to eat is a pretty big deal, but if that's all you're worrying about it doesn't seem so bad. I guess I don't worry about it because I've always been charitable to folks down on their luck, giving them a dollar when I'm able. I just assume there are other people out there like me.

If that's the case, then why is living in a stable home, earning money, having "things" so important? Because that's what everyone else has and society says that's what's acceptable? Sure I think there are plenty out there who feel the social pressure to have these things. But no, I think having a steady job and place of residence is important because it allows you to contribute to society and to the well-being of others. Which, to me, is important (why that is important could be an entire other topic). If you think about it, homeless people are somewhat selfish beings: they rely on others for survival without giving much in return. Which isn't fair to say, since I don't think anyone "chooses" to be homeless; there are plenty of reasons why it happens, most of which I don't and won't ever understand. And as far as taking from and not giving back to society, I'm as guilty as anyone else. I was simply making an observation.

But that's not to say I don't wanna give being homeless a try. It'd be interesting to understand these people, if only just a little bit. I mean, it wouldn't be the same. If push came to shove and for whatever reason I was unable to provide for myself, I have family and friends who could help till I get my feet on the ground, so I would always have that in the back of my mind. This would keep me from experiencing what it's like to be truly homeless. Kind of like the Pulp song "Common People" (although I'm more familiar with the William Shatner version).