Sunday, January 30, 2011

Sod Busters on Craigslist

I saw a free ad for sod on craigslist. Supposedly it had great grass growing on it. From the photos provided, it looked like I could just sling it into the low areas that flood out in my yard. So I called the guy. And then I went over.

He came out from watching TV to point out the pile. They were not what I expected. The pieces were not even depths of sod and the grass was pathetic, flattened short full of moss and weeds. I glanced around the rest of his yard to see what I was getting and it wasn't good. He went back inside immediatley to flop in front of his TV. I threw about five square foot pieces into my car, then thought "This is nuts. This is trash." It was. I got in my car and left.

It was my old neighborhood besides, the place where I was wrongly evicted and suffered so, at the hands of a slumlord. Feelings arose within me, a yearning. I had loved Corvallis. But it didn't love me back.

For all the talk of diversity love, they don't stand up for anything I can think of, unless it's far away and easy because it's far away. Injustices in their own city, forget about it, a blind eye will be turned. You're just as on your own there as anywhere else.

I had anxiety just to be on that same road where I used to live. I tried to fit in, to make the little slumshack rental not as disgusting to the neighbors, some of whom hated it with a passion and wished it would burn and told me that.

Yet I loved the area, the short walk to Bald Hill park, the pedestrian path I could walk back to Corvallis or all the way to Philomath. Another I could walk all the way to Timberhill shopping center. Or half through I cut along a path that wandered through fields, then across a covered bridge and ended up near campus. They have such wonderful paths in Corvallis everywhere. I miss those.

After taking off, I ended up at Winco. I was going to maybe get some groceries. But I saw Richard there, drunk as a skunk, and holding a sign. I didn't read it. He was begging. Homeless Richard.

I drove up above him and yelled at him and he came over right away, saying he needed my number, that they were out of cat food again, and would have to connect somehow with the humane society to get it.

I knew that would not work out, since they're so far from it. I gave him a card. I just printed up some more on my computer.

I got back in my car and sat there. Then I drove to the Grocery Outlet and got their last five bags of Atta Cat. I know, it's shit food, but what the hell. It's food and it's cheap.

Then I drove over to the homeless camp. But, there, also holding signs, by the Safeway center, Stacy and Pete. I was already past them but I pulled in at the next entrance and circled back and parked and went to talk to them.

I told them I had five bags of cat food for them in my car. Just then a sheriff's car pulls in and parks not far from my car in the shopping mall parking lot.

I don't know why he showed up, if maybe some up and coming asshole called about the two harmless homeless sitting along the curb or what. I didn't ask. I just told them to head on back to the camp and I'd meet them there with the food. So they headed out and I went over and parked near the camp, unloaded the cat food and waited for them.

I couldn't hike it in with my bad foot and wearing only sandals. It's flooded back in there.

While waiting some guy in a pickup pulls by real slow staring at me. I didn't say anything but I figured he was up to no good. He then puts his truck in reverse and backs up almost even with me, but still doesn't say anything, just stares out his window at me. I wasn't going to say a word because I figured, since it was all dark around me, he was trying to decide if it was safe to rob me. Finally I say, "Can I help you?" I was actually gripping my bear pepper spray canister pretty hard in my pocket.

He finally said, "You seen a piece of plywood? I lost a piece out of my rig." I'm staring at his rig. The back is closed up. Be pretty hard to lose a piece of plywood with the back all closed up. I said, "No I haven't." I keep facing him and just at that time the homeless pair wander up and he takes off and I was happy about that.

They were grateful for all that cat food. I didn't know if my debit card would actually cover it when I bought it, but I hoped it would, and if it didn't, screw it. I am really really broke.

It was a risk I know, stupid probably, to buy them all that food when I have nothing. I don't care. When you have nothing you have nothing to lose really. The cats there, I can't let them starve. There aren't that many left. Nobody else is stepping up to offer help.

I'd put a plea out on craigslist asking for help with cat food, and got only one reply, asking what kind I feed. I responded, but then I never heard another thing from that person.

Those three campers, they're old drunks and not one of them probably has much time left. They drink. Their problems are out there, for all to see, and they do get the criticism, for not being productive members of society. But what are our values? Our greatest value is working ourselves to death, to produce what, the planet now sick from infliction of our values? Long ago, we all should have become less productive, more self-reliant, less prolific breeders, more gregarious.

Well, enough useless philosophy. I did what I did and I'm not sorry.

I hope those cats got a great big fat meal tonight. Atta Cat, well, my cats don't mind it now and then. I don't think it's ever been recalled, since it has no standards for ingredients and is probably mostly corn.

Julian Assange was on 60 Minutes when I got back. He was getting raked by the reporter whose been effectively neutered by the network and his own fears of retribution if he spoke the truth. We used to celebrate truth and openness in America. Now we like to spy on our own citizens and sneak around in the dark around the world. Julian Assange's website is a big threat to the new us.

He referred to the First Amendment, to providing a harbor for whistleblowers when no one else will. Whistle blowers often end up fired and ruined and they shouldn't. If it takes Julian Assange to give them their open mic, at least there's one place left.

The press changed back in the Bush Administration. They got bullied and corporations, who sell ads, now own the news. The news has to please the big companies who bought the ads and the corporate heads who own the news companies.

I don't believe a word I hear anymore on the news. It's soft garbage, nothing of depth. It's pathetic. I like to see cats neutered but not news men and women. They're supposed to be gutsy and the last vanguard of truth.

Julian Assange has balls.

I couldn't watch the segment. They're going to crucify him is why. Probably right here in America, which is exactly where he should be instead hailed as a hero.

I can't stand to look into the eyes of dead men walking.

He's playing with fire. He's got stuff on powerful people and corporations who buy elections here. He thinks that information, not yet released, like on some big American banks, will protect him, but it will just get him skewered.

Here's the catch in his story: if they prosecute him for printing the cables, they also have to prosecute anybody else who printed them, and there were many other places, like the New York Times, and there ends freedom of the press. He's got us. Smart guy. The reporter said, they are going after him to prevent more of the same down the line. "More of the same?" Assange asked, "You mean freedom of the press? More of that?"

I think his website is really to wake up America, to be what we say we are, what we want to be, to remind us what we don't want to be.

I already think it is insanity to be fighting at all overseas right now. I hate the Taliban, don't get me wrong. I like to see them all dead. But we can't afford wars right now. We can't even keep schools open or bridges in repair or pay for health care for old people and yet we're spending billions in foreign countries.

That's completely insane. And it's anti American.

Well, enough chitter chatter with myself on these difficult subjects.

As for the Crabtree cats, I can't force them to finish fixing them. That's the way it is. Tomorrow, I'll collect my equipment from them and not look back.

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